notes on the patriarchy, awareness, death &, finally, life

One time when I was little my family went to Florida for a couple weeks. We rented a house there right by the ocean and her white sands. I remember feeling so excited! Oozing with the glee that makes you shiver.

Erin and I made it out early one morning and found purple sea cucumbers splattered all over the beach, as if it’d been raining squishy tubes. Long and responsive, we poked them with sticks. Purple goo came out. They were still alive and I didn’t understand them. I felt intrigued and a little creeped out and made sure not to step on them.

I found sharks teeth in the eroding cliffs and I remember the house we rented had a shower room, not just a stall. With two shower heads and tiled walls. I loved the shower. It forever changed my ideas of what showers could be.

Our ancestors can pass on many things to us. Mine passed onto me white skin, which, as I grow older, holds a lot more implications than I realized as a child. One also passed on a few shares of stock in McDonalds. Isn’t that ironic?

We get many patterns from our family, some of which we may wish to no longer keep. We’re all dying. And with us, hopefully, generation by generation, our unheard & unhealed patterns and wounds. Our nasty repetitions embedded before birth, hammered home in childhood and cemented in adolescence to be lived out into maturity and passed on once again.

We can be the ones to shift the cycle, though some patterns feel as deep as the Grand Canyon. Time, presence, awareness, loving support, envisioning and witnessing new possibilities- all of these can help to start shift age old patterns. Some may seem as natural as breathing, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for change.

I was reflecting on the patriarchal control or possession often called love or care. How these things don’t always make sense and they’re not easy to put into words because they’re so pervasive and therefore hard to see. But these hold memories too, capable of being fresh, recalled, and looked at.

For example, this morning the smell of lumber, black coffee and a sound like the droning of Rush Limbaugh (who I used to complain “gave me a headache” even in my youth), brought back memories of feeling trapped and detained as a child. Not all childhood memories are sweet and not all parents’ actions are perfect, not all of the ancestral hand-me-downs are things we consider keeping. Some should be burned in an incinerator. The patriarchy is dying and, as I wrote earlier, so are we all.

Let these cycles stop with me. Let my form be a fresh breath of awareness. Learn me love full of freedom, care without control, & loving intention without possession.

Let there be true love in the world and let it start with me.

May these old forsaken patterns die with us. May we awaken to a fresh dawn, a new spring, a lively, enchanted and bright morn.

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