Copyright 2014 by Roberta Gallagher
A period of time ago I was experiencing what could be called a dark night of the soul. I was not happy yet I had all the trappings of happiness. I owned a beautiful home in a tropical and quiet neighborhood. I had a loving family and a terrific mate. I felt empty and doubted that I was worthwhile.
I wallowed in this for a number of months, perhaps even a few years. When I am feeling like that I isolate and lose track of time.
One morning from somewhere the idea came. “You have got to go away.” I was busy at work and thought I could hold on until the Xmas-New Year break.
When talking with the director of the center I decided to go to, he said something about anticipating many new people around that time and that it was quiet now. I had me a “hell with it” moment. I decided to go the next day, emailed and texted my clients and I was ready.
My dear, sweet partner who is very deliberate about his decision making was supportive but confused. I hide my distress well. The decision was made on a Saturday and I left for the center on Sunday.
Have you ever been in that space? You know you are not alright but you do not really think of taking an action until something inspires you. Is it inspiration or is it spirit directing you? Which do you believe? Which belief gives you comfort?
I drove up to this old fashioned motel on the ocean. Its cabins and landscaping put me in mind of long ago Miami Beach. The people there were much younger than I and I wondered if I would fit in and feel comfortable.
The first morning I woke up, as is my custom, before daybreak. On the handle of my door was a copy of a page from I know not where which said the following:
I often turn in a crowded city to stare at a face on which
experience has written a pattern of celebration.
~ Mary Francis Shura Craig
A beautiful soul can’t be dimmed. A soul lit by joy brightens all our features and makes us beautiful beyond measure. Even though our bodies often show wear, an internal zest grows stronger and shines brighter. Living our lives with vigor and involvement fuels the spirit and keeps us getting up each morning expecting good to come of the day.
This doesn’t mean we expect all joy and no sadness. It doesn’t mean we don’t anticipate challenge. Time is teaching us that our surface beauty may be temporary, but the beauty of a joyful spirit is forever.
It has been said that we couldn’t see the beauty of the canyon carvings without the windstorms of life. By surviving and growing through life’s windstorms, we find ourselves more weathered and more real.
I thought that the staff must put this on every new person’s door. When I inquired I was told no on had ever put anything on any of their room doors.
There you have it. It is a mystery. I needed to see this. I then experienced a magnificent opening in my heart and mind. I had no factual way to prove how this arrived at my door. I was touched by something I did not understand.
This was a great gift and the beginning of a new perspective. I share this with you on today, May 15, 2014, my 74th birthday. Life is always presenting new paths if you are open. I am now a happy person and each morning I decide anew to be happy. My fears have gone away. Enthusiasm for living is refreshed. I awake with a Zen Mind.