Monday, March 14, 2011

Re-Entry: Reflection and Integration

I'm home! After a week of varied activities and sleeping in three different beds, I am home. I have unpacked my bags, done the laundry, read the mail and newspapers, grocery shopped, and answered emails. This morning I resumed my normal morning schedule--went to Curves, walked the neighborhood, and spent time in meditation and devotions--and now it is time to return to my writing life. I love the rhythm of re-entry with its restoration and reinstatement of routine, but the context for the routine has shifted slightly, for there are now additional memories and experiences to integrate into who I am and what I do.

During this time away I wore many hats: friend, daughter, sister, mother, GrandNan, student, and writer. A lot was packed into one week, and even though I am grateful to once again have quiet time here at my desk, I miss the vitality of those days with their interactions and conversations and especially, the hugs and sweet kisses from the grandkids, Maren and Peter.

The world is not the same as it was when I loaded my car and drove to St Paul a little over a week ago. The infamous budget bill here in Wisconsin has been passed, but the protests have not ended, and Japan has been rocked by earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear power plant destruction. Suffering and death. Transformative shifts. Endings and beginnings, although not immediately apparent. High emotions and less than obvious next steps. Feelings of helplessness and also awe at the resilience of humanity. Opportunities to express compassion and to realize our best selves. How do we do that? I am not sure, but I offer the metaphor of the kaleidoscope, thanks to an anonymous writer at the "Awakening the Soul of the Writer" conference I attended this weekend.

"The kaleidoscope is a wonderful metaphor for the creative process because this instrument allows us to twist reality into new patterns. In the kaleidoscope a set of fragments form a pattern, but it isn't locked into place. Reality, the kaleidoscope tells us, is only a temporary arrangement. Creativity consists of rearranging the pieces to create a new reality."

The pieces have been rearranged. Pieces are rearranged every day. Yesterday, today, and tomorrow, too. In that awareness there is hope, along with mystery. In that knowledge there is opportunity for renewal, repair, and even rebirth. Each change, each rearrangement is a kind of re-entry, a chance for reconciliation and resurrection. How we each choose to do that is an expression of essential creativity.

1 comment:

  1. Your words again feed my soul and give me one reason to feel blessed you are my sister. I LOVE the metaphor of the kaleidiscope and the creative process. I have often said that I have no new ideas, I just like to springboard off beautiful things around me. So today I will seek to arrange things with a focus on joy and peace.