Thursday, May 6, 2010

Hope, Hope, Hope

I hesitate to write in this blog many times, waiting until I feel I have something significant to share, fearing that my words and message will have little or no import and desiring—hoping, really—that my words do have import for those who read them and those who need them. One of the few blogs I follow is Ivy League Insecurities, written by a fellow Ivy League graduate, who freely admits to her insecurities. "No league," she says, "prepares you for life." I think sometimes that those of us who attend Ivy League institutions do so because we are so driven by the depth of our insecurities. But that is for another blog, and another day.

I want to address again the issue of abandonment and the pain that accompanies it. I have come to believe that abandonment causes some of our deepest wounding. Perhaps, no, certainly, abandonment is at the heart of our most profound, cut to the very bone and into our marrow wounding. It seems to be accompanied by an immeasurable hopelessness, as if they are Siamese twins, inseparable companions, bosom friends. In a conversation with a good, good friend just the other night, we uncovered the wounding of abandonment, and in the midst of the realization, she said, "I feel so hopeless." For me, at times, it has felt as though the pain of the abandonment and the extent of the hopeless were so deep that neither could be sounded.

So, what does that leave me (us?) with: incredible emotional pain and the feeling or belief that there is no hope, no way out. But I refuse to believe that. I refuse to lose my grip on hope, no matter how tenuous it has been at times over the last several months. And, there have been times when I have relied on others who love me to help me strengthen my grip. If you are struggling with this issue as I am, I suggest you make sure you have at least one or two people who love and care for you who know the struggle you are facing and can believe in healing for you when you can't believe it for yourself. Let them know this is their job for the next few months until you have reached a place where you can consistently hold onto hope yourself. This experience has taught me, as has nothing else in life, how fundamental hope is to our very existence. Hope is a precious thing, and of itself needs to be cherished and cultivated.

I read something today that has given me some breathing room in the midst of the sadness and has strengthened my will to continue to work through this pain and reach a place of true healing. In response to a woman who was speaking to Deepak Chopra about what to do with the pain of losing a child, he said, "This pain is not your pain." I can imagine that must have been a shock to her. How could something so devastatingly painful, the very physically palpable pain I am sure she was feeling not be her pain? He went on to explain that the pain she felt was not just her pain, but pain shared by countless others around the world. And the truth is, the pain of my abandonment is not my pain. It also is shared by countless others around the world. Some who may feel it even more profoundly and for far longer than I have felt it. As I work through it, as I fight my way toward healing, can I allow myself to uncouple myself from it? Can I allow the pain to be bigger than me, so that my fight to heal it is not just my fight, but a fight for others as well? Can I allow it to be a fight that even heals the pain of this carried in the very dust of the earth itself? For today, I think I can. And for today, that is enough, and even more than enough. And the fight continues, for today, there is hope.

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