|The view out my window.|
The holiday season of 2013 will be remembered as the one when the lights went out. A massive ice storm hit Toronto, snapping limbs off huge trees and dropping power lines on roadways. My household was among them, plunging us into total darkness as we sat down to a meal. Candles were found, but the temperature dropped rapidly. Humans and dogs put on their sweaters and we ran taps to stave off freezing pipes. The Rogers network went down, and cell phone batteries died one by one. No internet, no light by which to read, no hot tea to warm aching bones. We gathered around a hand crank radio to hear that hydro workers were being brought in from other provinces and the US. Thankfully shops on Queen East still had power, and hot soup. Over two days the house became colder and colder until, when our power came back on the next night, my son was combing the ‘hood searching for firewood as I huddled by the dying fire wrapped in layered coats, scarves and gloves. As of today, almost one hundred thousand people are still without heat and light across Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick. Half a million lost power over all.
|Our icy street blocked off below a fallen hydro wire.|
I have friends in Uganda who deal with loss of power frequently, but not in freezing temperatures. I recall loving the depth of the night in Uganda, where street lighting is rarely found off the main roadways, but my Ugandan friends spoke of how much they feared and disliked the night. How total was its nature.
Our taste of the cold and dark was brief and yet potent. It was apparent how quickly we can lose the comforts we take for granted, and to what extent electricity (and electronics) rule our lives. There was an initial sense of liberation and play, like going to a cottage. It was great to put the phones away for awhile as real conversation replaced texting. Candles and firelight lent such a beauty to the dark. A dear friend dropped by some blankets. On the streets and at home we met camaraderie in the face of crisis, as we all helped one another to stay warm.
But as physical discomfort and communication challenges increased, so did the low voice of survival fear. It felt surreal to walk through the large, shadowy, empty shell of the house, with many rooms too cold to inhabit. It was strange to navigate the treacherous icy walks without a means of contacting loved ones, to know if they were safe. At the time of the storm, we were already living without a real kitchen due to renovations, and our car was in the garage. Loved ones were frustrated, and anger and grief came up to be seen and heard. I knew my daughter was also without power a few blocks away, but with no phones, couldn’t reach her. Now it began to feel like an enforced camping trip – nowhere to go and nothing to do once the sun went down except curl into a ball and sleep. Laundry went unwashed. Facebook retreated like the distant land of Oz.
This Christmas season heralded yet another wave of intense astrological energies, with Venus going retrograde, traveling to an Underworld of sorts. Fears have been made vivid, with lack expressing for each person in their own way. Holidays often bring up buried grief and magnify relationship issues rather than soothe them, so this, combined with having heat and light snatched away, stirred up a grand Christmas pudding of emotions for many. It’s tempting to grit our teeth and just try to make it through, or put on a forced smile. But in fact, all this turmoil beneath the surface provides us with a great opportunity to excavate past traumas and release them, a process I call “clearing”. This was a great Christmas for clearing, all around.
And then came the moment when the lights came back on. Without warning, our house jolted back to life, her Christmas lights sparkled again, and heat surged through her heart. Surrounded by light again, dark shadows fell away into gratitude and relief.
As we prepare for the New Year, most of us are moved to make changes in our lives, to reach for accomplishments and fulfillment of dreams. There are simple tips that can help us achieve this more successfully in the coming year, such as these guidelines for goal setting by leadership coach, Michael Hyatt.
But all the good intentions in the world will achieve little if we are still stuck in resistance to our own power, beauty, and divine nature, if we buy into the voices of our guilt and blame. When we face the dark and cold of our lives and instead turn our doubt over to be transformed by Spirit, trusting that we are worthy of love, we liberate ourselves from the tyranny of inner fear. The Wicked Witch melts in the rain of our tears, and the truth of Love comes home.
I would like to extend a seasonal gift of thanks to all of my dear friends, readers, followers and neighbours, to support your own transformation in the coming year. For a limited time I am offering a free download of a meditation called Peace, a sound healing chant that brought so much powerful healing into my life when it was first received more than a decade ago. This is a new version that I hope will serve you. Put on headphones, settle yourself into a voluntary blackout or light a candle, and lie or sit in a comfortable position. As the meditation begins, allow your breathing to slow down with the chant. The simple lyrics invite you to listen consciously for divine guidance and connection. What do you hear? Who is here? Love is here. Notice how the vibration moves through your body. Allow your heart to open and receive.
Please click here to access your free download.
I am deeply grateful for all of you, for your presence in my life, and your company upon our shared journey. I feel a non-physical electric current running through this transition to 2014, buzzing with possibility, actualization, creativity and truth. May this be the year that you find joy in unexpected places, and trust in every aspect of your experience in this incarnation. May Peace be yours, in 2014. Happy Holidays and a Blessed New Year to all.