The earth has a way of cleansing itself with fire. It’s devastating, but all that eventually grows after is always more beautiful.
Beauty from ashes…
When I shared this image on Facebook –
– my beautiful mother-in-law commented: Just remember, out of all the burned ground there will be new growth and a new life…the earth will heal.
When you’re an introspective navel-gazing observer of self and the world like me, you find much of life is tied to one thing or another. (I realize the duh factor in that statement, but I do mean it on another level.) While Colorado burned for a very long short while, my soul has been on fire for much longer. (And I was recently nominated Drama Queen of the Decade.)
Let me explain: Sometimes you don’t realize how much you’ve pushed yourself into a mush ball of self-defeat until you allow the fire in your heart to take over. You don’t see how much you’ve missed until it’s a burning ember, threatening to flicker out once and for all. And understanding how deeply trauma has motivated your every move is heartbreaking, because all those regrets you never thought you had, they’ve been smoldering, silently, hoping to be stirred, hoping to catch again and become something more. Not because regret is good, but because sometimes regret serves that all-important reality check of what could have been and what you missed because you were so busy pretending like nothing mattered, but it did…oh, how it did.
It’s like driving past Waldo Canyon every time you come home from Colorado Springs and barely glancing over, maybe sometimes remembering that it was the first hike you took when you moved to Colorado, but mostly it’s just there, on the side of the road, a busy spot for tourists but not for you, not anymore. And then you see it’s on fire, it’s scorched, it’s different. And though you know something beautiful will grow again, you can only see the ugliness of the pain inflicted upon the trees and the earth that you once walked upon.
That was me. I saw me daily, and I bypassed me…daily. What do I need? What does it matter that this or that or the other happened to me? Who cares? I am marching forward. I’m all good. And you are…until you’re not. That’s what happened. The slight crackling embers of my soul caught fire and at first it was all emergency and drama and panic. This mother was burning down, I tell you! But I walked my inferno self right into a counselor’s office and sat my blackened heart on her couch, and I let the fire burn.
It burned and it burned, and finally, it began to simply smoke. And then it smoldered slightly, just enough to keep some of the anger alive, but then, beautifully and God-fully and wonderfully it burned itself out completely. Ash remained, my mind, my memories, my heart, my soul, all burned out and blackened.
From the ashes came a tender pink heart, a shaky soul on baby legs, quivering with excitement rather than fear, in anticipation rather than dread, with songs of joy rather than curses of pain. I rise and stand, brushing off the layers that have consumed me for way too long, and I breathe in this fresh air of forgiveness – of them, of her, of him, of me.
I am new; beauty rises from the ash and radiates from my heart. I am alive. I am well. I am ready.
I think I’m gonna make it after all.
*For anyone not in the know, I write my blog posts like Morning Pages (only not always in the morning, and not every day, obviously), and they are what they are – raw, weird, ramble-y, whatever comes to mind about what is on my heart.