With my hands in the air I announce, I’m done. I give in. I surrender.
I had an epiphany last week and it was both utterly amazing and out of this world emotional. I’ve spent my days painting, drawing, studying, reading, writing, planning, and searching. The days go by rapidly and I am overwhelmingly engaged. I search more than I do anything. I wrack my brain until it’s bruised and sore to think. I laugh, smile, frown, and tears stream down my face pouring out an array of emotions. I feel on the verge of insanity but remain sane (I think). Over the years I have successfully ignored the whispers that have tried to give me the answer I needed and then the brick wall came tumbling down. I’ve struggled to understand and haven’t known exactly how to proceed. It still hurts and I continually stumble over the bricks. Since the wall fell the question that has tugged at me is, what is my purpose? Last week the answer came rushing to me and I blushed in my own presence. It has been staring me in the face all this time. All of my life it has been right here in front of me.
I was born feeling that life is both extraordinary and fragile. As a child I spent much of my time with critters both small and big and felt amazed by them all. I also felt the devastation of the untimely deaths of the smallest creatures to those that somehow ended my dinner plate. That spider that was smashed on the floor had one chance and it was taken in an instant based on irrational fear. That beef dinner was actually once a cow, with friends and family, and it ended for a meal. Just like that life is over, forever. I do my best to never be the cause of the end of any creatures life because we all have this in common- we only have this one chance in this life. Over the the years I have tried to teach people compassion toward all creatures. I have taught using tears, sadness, anger, screaming, frustration, empathy, sympathy, and finally surrender.
When I was 10, I cried when a friend had smashed a spider on a wall near her bedroom. With its small fragile corpse still imbedded in the wall she announced to me in laughter that Charlotte was dead. At twenty years old, after intentionally arriving after folks ingested the tortured dead turkey on Thanksgiving, I sobbed when the mother of my ex called me into a room and then declared with an abhorrent snicker, “Here’s a spider! Try to save this one!” and proceeded to smash it before me. Now I’m in my thirties and while my brother-in-law was visiting a couple years ago, he felt compelled to proclaim that he squished a bug in a vegan home on Facebook. What is with people? I always thought I was weak because millions of moments like this are etched into my soul permanently. Like an elephant, I never forget. I have often thought that I am too sensitive to exist on this planet with people who don’t see the beauty of life other than their own (sometimes not even that). I’ve felt shredded by people who are outright cruel in their seemingly personal attacks. These experiences were profound and should have lead me to my greatest purpose. But instead they have tormented me and in turn I have dialed away from my greatest passion to avoid stress, pain, and suffering.
Part of my epiphany is that these actions (from millions of instances), from those I know and do not know, are NOT personal. These actions belong to those individuals and are only a reflection of them, not me. I am not weak unless I choose to take these moments personal. My purpose to bring light to the beauty of all life. I’ve always felt connected to every living creature from microscopic and gigantic, yes even to people who can be unbearably cruel. It’s time I surrender to who I am, make a commitment, and work toward feeling complete. It is too painful to live any other way.
Like so many, I’m a huge fan of Oprah. I recently watched her Master Class and she expressed this beautiful thought that is in perfect alignment with where I am today…
“When you’ve worked as hard and done as much and strived and tried and given and plead and bargained and hoped… surrender.
When you have done all that you can do and there’s nothing left for you to do… give it up.
Give it up to something that is greater than yourself… then let it become part of the flow.”
I unknowingly surrendered and it’s feeling rad.
Did you know that a Humane Educator is a real thing? Ah-maze-ing!
What is your purpose?