Much of the last year has been spent getting that little piece of paper in the top right of this picture, a license as an officiant in the Province of Ontario. It is something I have wanted for a long time and someone I love who wanted me to marry her in June was my incentive.
Oh, how things turn. The day after I get the license I find out her plans have changed, and she no longer needs me to do her wedding. Books in hand for making plans for her day I have a choice. The old me would throw up my hands in defeat and wonder why I bothered but this new me looks to the other opportunities which may open for me.
It used to not take much to throw me into a tail spin of depression and self depreciation but now it’s not so easy to go down that road. A change like this I would have taken personally, and I would have been upset for weeks but I can’t do that any more. I’ve learned a great deal about what is my” stuff” and what is someone else’s. While the lesson keeps repeating I’m beginning to really get it.
This journey toward emotional and spiritual health has been multifaceted but there are two big pieces. The first has been learning about living in the moment and the other is about forgiveness. Add a few drops of essential oils and I feel like a new person.
The living in the moment part began when I was handed a copy of a book by Eckhart Tolle. I tried to read the first chapter and literally tossed the book across the room. I couldn’t get my head around the concept. It made me angry and he and Oprah were dismissed as fools. A few years later when I began the Spiritual Direction course I found a book by Thích Nhất Hạnh a modern Buddhist teacher who was teaching the same concept but managed to put it in a way that was understandable to me. I began to get it and from then on it has been part of my quest to understand how to let things go in the moment, to examine them in the moment and to respond appropriately in the moment. I’m not there yet and it takes work, but it is becoming easier.
The act of forgiveness is very much tied to this idea of living in the moment. Reacting is being unforgiving. Holding grudges and feelings of resentment is certainly not living in the moment. In fact, those feelings tie us to the past with deadly chords and hold us from the good the future might hold. My recent journey through A Course in Miracles has led me to a deeper understanding of forgiveness and the love it allows me to extend is a gift I now cherish. It is the best thing I can offer to anyone. It is the best things I can offer myself. While it is not always easy it is always necessary.
This living in the moment and learning to let things go with love has helped me to better understand the words of my favourite modern mystic, Etty Hillesum. This Polish Jew who helped so many of her fellow Jews through the horror of the holocaust wrote her last words on a postcard thrown from the train which took her to her death. She said, “We left the camp singing.”
It is my goal to “leave the camp singing” not matter what curve life and circumstance throws at me.
Looking forward to where these books and this certificate take me even it is just to know the journey has lead me to this new state of mind.
If you know someone who needs an offiant give them my number. 🙂 (519-718-4512)