Saturday, October 9, 2010

I reconnected with this beautiful poem below this morning as I was looking for something to open a presentation related to how we grow and change as human beings...a vague topic, a VAST topic, but one that always fascinates me because we are always unfurling before each other's very eyes, if we pay attention and allow ourselves to. We should never write anyone off, beginning with our very own selves. It fascinates me how different situations or relationships or places illicit or summon different selves to come rushing and leaping forth, or slithering back, or cowering in the corner, or feeling safe enough for the first time to step from behind, an often self-imposed, curtain. Life often isn't as much about peeling back layers but being brave enough to design and create new ones altogether.

This is an especially meaningful topic to me at this time as I heal and recover from a significant loss and transition in my own life. I've never been the type of therapist to pretend that everything is alright when its really not, and truth be told, the past year was likely the most painful of my life. Therefore, this topic is particularly raw and important to me. How do we change? and grow into the people we long to be, especially when life throws its knockout punches from time to time? How long do we allow ourselves to lick our wounds? to grieve when we hurt so much and are in such searing pain? For me, by allowing it, by not pretending I'm anywhere other than I am, and then letting the pain take new shape into something more manageable and useful. What we resist, of course, usually persists.

I plan to use this poem and the quotes below in my presentation and thought others might find them meaningful too.

by Portia Nelson


I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in.
I am lost ... I am helpless.
It isn't my fault.
It takes me forever to find a way out.


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don't see it.
I fall in again.
I can't believe I am in the same place
but, it isn't my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in ... it's a habit.
my eyes are open
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.


I walk down another street.

And this is from Herbert Otto:

“Change and growth take place when a person has risked himself and dares to become involved with experimenting with his own life.”

“We are all functioning at a small fraction of our capacity to live life fully in its total meaning of loving, caring, creating, and adventuring. Consequently, the actualizing of our potential can become the most exciting adventure of our lifetime.”

If you wish to consider this, what fraction of your capacity would you estimate you are using lately in your ability to love and care and create and adventure???
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