The beginning of love is the will to let those we love be perfectly themselves, the resolution not to twist them to fit our own image. If in loving them we do not love what they are, but only their potential likeness to ourselves, then we do not love them: we only love the reflection of ourselves we find in them
― Thomas Merton
My heart beats fast. When I first sat down the world was quiet and dark. The morning light now starts to creep in through my eyelids and I know that the new day is here. I was able to focus well enough in my meditation, but at times felt intense sensation that felt like weight bearing down on my chest. At other times it felt like flash floods moving through my veins. I know where it’s coming from, and when I open my eyes the thoughts come rushing into my mind like they’ve broken through the dam I so carefully set up when I first sat down. They were probably there the whole time. Now, I catch hold of them and begin the process of perseverating on the passing thoughts. They move slow, even stagnate at points in my body. My shoulders are in my ears and my biceps feel tense. The strange thing is that I have a feeling that everything will be okay. I have no other choice.
I seek trust in the moments that I want to hide in the darkness. I could sit in the comfort of what I know endlessly, even when I taste the stale bitterness of what’s done left in my mouth. How do we know when it’s time to move on? My biggest challenge here is being able to trust completely that all will be well. In the blinding light of the sunrise, I struggle to get a clear glimpse of the horizon and its landscape. How will it look? What bounty and badlands await me in the clear light of a new day? All I know, is the light is coming.
Trust, to me, is like falling in love over and over. Believing that this is the right one. I’ve been starving myself for that next lover. Now, bone dry and ready to quench my thirst. Like a bone lady, I drink from the lips of lovers who share with me the taste of life, and remind me that trust is my own choice. Years ago when I was struggling in a relationship a friend said to me “love is a choice”. I’ve squandered those opportunities again and again, choosing to lay face down in the mud of my mind. “Fuck love, and fuck trust. Fuck them, fuck me, fuck it all.” I forgot about trust as a choice I could make. That muscle started to atrophy.
My lesson today is trust. To make it through the waves of anxiety that rage, then softly ebb and flow. I listen to my heart beat and hear murmurs of insecurity and fear. At time my heart feels heavy as though these sensations have solidified within me and blocked the flow of trust. There’s a part of me that resists, and I can feel its wild desire to self-destruct waxing and waning, toward and away from me. There’s a part that says “SUCCUMB. FAIL. FALL.”. But, even at a whisper, there is a voice that says “trust”. Fall in love. Open heart, open mind.
Today, like every day, my mind is drawn to the breath. To the inhale and the exhale, and the spaces in between. This, I believe, is the essence of trust.
Today, I trust. I choose not to remain complacent in my own self-destruction. I trust myself and my capacities.