It's early morning and as I sit in the beautiful garden at my friends house, slowing the pace of my thinking and movement down, I willingly invite whatever wants to meet me. There is what I would label as discomfort in my body, a terrible ache in my solar plexus and throat and images flow through me of the trail of loss in my life and a tremendous longing for home. I remain curious and willing to enter into the felt sense of all of it. Resistance is exhausting. It is through this portal, named and unnamed, that the buzzing bee in the linaria comes into my awareness; I see the minuscule spider on my book (hello!) and the butterfly that lands on the grass and opens her wings (do they do that for a reason, was she drinking in the sunlight like me?). I feel the grief flow as I write, and it's not sadness, it's by way of relief and celebration that something in me softens daily so that this witnessing of life in the present moment becomes possible, a state of innocence, not only innocence of a childlike state but I'm wondering could it even be the innocence of what it is to be human when we are in the flow of life energy?
And so I come to what I want to share about the phrase 'BOTH / AND'. These magic words were shared with me when I first met Marshall Rosenberg's work Nonviolent Communication, a process that offers a lens of compassion through our thinking and our language. Today I remembered it, both/and, I remembered that the grief and the celebration of life can dwell together and that I don't need to 'get rid' of one to access the other. As grief puts her cloak around me and invites me into her presence she is laden with gifts that she will share with me when I create the room for her. This morning the gift was this life filled garden which, without her visitation, I would have struggled to absorb, and also the hope of sharing this life onwards to the 'village', whoever that is. Perhaps you are part of my village, and I share this by way of an offering what may arrive to you as nourishment at this time of global change.