It’s almost here! My indoor plants are beginning to rejuvenate—new growth and tender, green color. Snowbanks are shrinking. Seventeen days, by the calendar, until it is Spring. With warmer temperatures, people are beginning to smile more, birds are singing, and the Minnesota Shuffle is replaced by confident, energetic steps. A shift is in the making. Giving thanks for a time of going inward and what we’ve learned about ourselves, we eagerly welcome the freshness of a new season.
Yet with any change, comes risk. For plants, it’s surviving weather patterns. For animals, it’s finding enough food and pursuing instinctive drives to survive. For humans, it’s deciding to venture out of our comfort zone to live more fully. Frank Ostaseski, founder of the Zen Hospice Project in San Francisco, defines living fully as “a life characterized by love, meaning, and purpose.”
For many of us, that is living a life with little left to chance, risking what could be a somewhat monotonous or boring existence. Others who embrace the unknown and spiritual nudges risk possible encounters with hidden fears, stories of pain, or misunderstandings, yet are gratified by growing spiritual awareness. Then there are those who risk every imaginable marker in between. Risk has several defining moments: Acknowledging the past, yet realizing more possibilities exist; surrendering to Source to receive gifts beyond the wildest of imaginations; and celebrating exhilaration in the unexpected, culminating in a deeper knowing.
A spiritual force moved me to accept a calling to heal and awaken people to loss, death, and dying through writing and speaking. I thought that most of my life had been lived in a safety and comfort bubble. I guess it was time for a new journey that held different expectations; a steep learning curve; and hurdles of resistance, doubt, and disbelief to overcome. What I didn’t understand was the gratification and beauty that I would come to know because of this work. In hindsight, the path of my last decade has consistently indicated, “Go for it!” “I’ve got your back!” “I trust you.” The best nudges of direction, they led me to gather amazing ancient wisdom, modern research, anecdotal evidence, and experience that developed my awareness, so I could share what I’d learned with others along the way. I am so grateful.
If I hadn’t decided to risk this adventure into loss, death, and dying, I would have missed many meaningful opportunities—moments unnoticed, stories unexplored, and relationships benefitting from connecting in loving service. An expanding comfort zone indicates that I am heard clearly by those who are ready to hear me. As I share materials of breadth and depth, divine insights, and the gifts available during loss, death, and dying, I ease the journey for others. Warren Buffet says it all:
“Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.”
From a higher vantage: Find a friend in loss, death, and dying work to augment your relationship with Source. You may believe that there is nothing new to learn about these topics, yet fresh information and perspectives are continuously emerging. Why not be part of the Death Positive Movement, so you can make informed decisions? Time is the only non-renewable resource. Venture out.
©2023 In the Thick of Things