F-E-A-R has two meanings: ‘Forget Everything And Run.’ or ‘Face Everything And Rise.’ The choice is yours.–Zig Ziglar
My dear friend sent me this quote the day before Thanksgiving, as I was struggling to wrap my words and thoughts around the concept of forgiveness and searching for comfort in the road of uncertainty that lies ahead of me. The play on the word FEAR was an affirmation that although I am incredibly afraid of the unknown, I am indeed going to rise like a phoenix from the ashes because this winter I am going to face everything and rise!
I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave (wo)man is not the one who does not feel afraid, but the one who conquers that fear.–Nelson Mandela
It feels like I’m stepping back into that studio apartment from the early days of my divorce, which I lovingly refer to as the Antler Den and write about in my post Follow the Sun. But this time it’s different. This time, I’m choosing to bravely enter into that space of emptiness. And this time, the place where I’m going to be alone is in my own home (and by alone, I mean, I do have Jasper Mraz and my kids for 50% of the time). December is one of the most hectic, coldest, darkest times of the year, and it’s in that space where I’m hoping to gain some insight into myself again. I have spent the greater part of 2021 trying to rebuild my broken wings, and now that I have, it’s time to figure out what they can do. I know now that without the dark, we cannot see the light, and without the silence, we cannot listen, and without the rest, we cannot move into action. So here I go, back into the void.
Enter Adele, 30
Have you had the chance to hear any of Adele’s latest album, 30? (Spoiler alert: she went through a divorce). Leading up to my visit with my son, several close friends sent me a few of her new songs to listen to, and I swear it was like Adele had a spy cam in my house. So I took advantage of the 9-hour trek home to listen to her album in its entirety and I must say, Adele has an incredible way of putting hard emotions into words. If I were to choose one song that best speaks to my soul and the fear that comes when trying to rebuild a life after the loss of a love, it would be “To Be Loved” (this is the part where I have to give honorable mention to other insightful songs from the album such as Hold On, My Little Love, I Drink Wine and Woman Like Me)
I’m so afraid but I’m open wide
I’ll be the one to catch myself this time
Trying to learn to lean in to it all
Ain’t it funny how the mighty fall?
Looking back I don’t regret a thing
Yeah, I took some bad turns that I am owning
I’ll stand still and let the storm pass by
Keep my heart safe ’til the time feels right
But oh my, oh my
I’ll never learn if I never leap
I’ll always yearn if I never speak
To be loved and love at the highest count
Means to lose all the things I can’t live without
Let it be known that I will choose to lose
It’s a sacrifice but I can’t live a lie
Let it be known-Adele, Tobias Jesso Jr.
Brutiful, right? I lied when I said that I’m choosing to be alone, because I will always have music; it’s what gets me through the hard times when I have to bravely step into the void alone. I hope that if you’re in a tough space this winter, that you can find comfort in the words of others who have been where you are right now. Their story may not be exactly the same as yours, but there are so many people who have blossomed on the other side of divorce and loss–let their wisdom shine a little light into your darkest fear (I see you and thank you Bob!). That’s all I have to say on the subject of FEAR for now. I know there will be more to come as I move deeper and deeper into the void. I’m excited for what I’ll discover there, and I’ll be sure to let you know what I find! Goodnight from Day 2 of the Void.
We are made up of two contrasting ideals. Love and Fear. Pick one and live.–Axl Rose (Thank you to my son Ozzie for sharing this quote with me and showing me what fearless living looks like at age 17)