Tidal Basin

Germination Detail Part III, by Leslie Shellow

contemplations about what stays in the net

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Following Joy

Last night, I decided to take this joy project to the juicer and chemically shift my internal hormone bath (which worked! Yay, endorphins!) Perhaps in no small part because I had chemically altered what I thought possible, I got an unexpected call from a dear friend of mine who was up on business. In the past, he has given me body work in exchange for writing mentorship. Out of our exchange has come a lovely relationship that continues to expand in new directions.

Today, we met for lunch and a walk. Note to self:  joy
                                                                                       from hope.

Why did I have hope, sitting with this man at our small table in a suburban shopping center? It was because we spoke of the things nearest to our hearts: relationships, the nature of intimacy, our individual writing, and our attempts to clarify the work we do in the world.

It was also because there was no judgement, one of the other. And the topics we discussed were ones that keep me so silent in the suburbs for fear of judgement, for fear I will not find an acknowledging nod.

My voice grew deeper and more assured . My skin softened because I stopped seeking to feel understood. A dolphin out of water is how I've felt here and that feeling has kept me in sadness and kept me from expressing the all of me and thereby healing. It isn't that I don't have people who care, I do. But this is the suburbs, and people live far from each other and exist in their family units, which fit better into other family units, puzzles with no pieces missing.

To feel ''normal," to feel accepted, to talk of the grandiosity of love and its complications and not feel that my less than conventional desires and visions are odd in any way, brings me joy.

My friend helped me brainstorm website ideas for my writing business. I helped him figure out a title for an article he is writing about sexual surrogacy. In weaving together strands of our experiences, we created new pathways. Doing so took heart and curiosity and a willingness to skirt the edges of the unknown and dive in when the temperature felt right.There was no map.

We hike voraciously through the woods, my arm in  a sling coming merrily for the ride without complaint. All the while, brainstorming, brainstorming.

This is where we are, my heart/body/mind/spirit. When we get angry, it is because something is not right for us. It's our way of getting my attention. I've been angry, I admit, perhaps for having listened to other people's stories and for not having shared my own truth. I take responsibility for not expressing myself, but each attempt felt like lifting a boulder and I see now that I've torn both my shoulders -- my lifting structure -- for having tried too hard. There are places I can be the self I enjoy being ~ Brooklyn, Cuba, Ocracoke Island.

There was a time after the first surgery and then after the second, that I worked to be okay with what was, in which I made the best of my circumstances and displayed a courageous and helpful face.

Sometimes, a repeat performance is not necessary, especially realizing gradually, like poison on a slow-drip, that having three surgeries was not necessary.

Sometimes, it's our anger that gets us out and back into love again.

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