How To Not Fall In Too Deep

We can’t do this alone. No matter how much I insist it’s easier to do things on my own, sometimes, many times, even the sturdiest of us need the helping hand of a friend or two when we find ourselves in too deep in the muck of our lives.

I’ve witnessed that much.

I’ve seen people struggle to get things done on their own, only to run up against one speed bump after another on that crazy road of life, and sometimes that speed bump is a mountain. It has happened to me more times than I care to remember.

Then I’ve seen people lying helpless in a hospital bed with nothing but the hope that someone will think of them. And pray.

One such friend lay in a hospital bed in Miami a few years ago after returning from a less-than-spectacular vacation. The doctors were not sure he would survive, so his family and friends pulled out the big guns. I called my mom who called her prayer group. Other friends called other friends. Soon, we had what seemed like half of Miami praying. (Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but it was more than just a handful!) The subject of our prayers, who had lain comatose and near death for days, began to recover. Now, more than five years later, he enjoys weekends holding the young grandchildren who had not been born back when the prayers went out.

As a hard-headed woman, I tend to think I don’t need help. I stand silent while I’m battered by things that would crush others. I stumble, but never fall. “I’ll be fine,” I say, but I wonder if I’m overextending myself.

No, I don’t wonder. I know I am.

Recently, a friend told me about Light Takers. I knew about Light Givers, people who bring light to those who live here and now, people that attract others like moths to a flame because of the energy they radiate.

Then there are Light Takers. Light Givers can be inadvertently sucked dry by Light Takers. There are ways to protect ourselves, but I wonder if the Light Givers are supposed to allow their light to enlighten the world.

I don’t believe the Light Takers are bad or should be avoided. I dearly love the Light Takers in my life, and I would be lost without many of them.

Like the Lamp Lighter in the story The Little Prince, many of us neglect our own need for relief. We need to protect ourselves.
The Tools

  • BE THE SUN: One suggestion I was given recently has proven powerful – imagine the sun as a dot inside my third eye. Imagine it growing. As it grows, it will fill you with its light to such an extent that you will be full and, like the sun, you will continue to attract as the Light Giver you are, but you will repel any intrusions.
  • ROAD TRIP: I have a friend who tells me road trips are cleansing for the soul. I’m taking that advice to heart. I’m counting down the days until I can start my summer road trip that I plan to be a vision quest of sorts. As the Light Takers in my life become more familiar these days, the only thing that keeps me going is that trip. I plan to visit friends as I hopscotch my way through the month of June. I plan to take tons of pictures and keep a journal as I replenish my own light.
  • FIND YOUR MUSE: For those who cannot dedicate a month to replenishing the light in their souls, another suggestion is to find what brings you joy. For me, the way out is writing (some times) but music all times. That is why many of my blog posts of late have had a soundtrack. For others, their muse may be a baseball game or a trip to the park.

 

Dear friends, I encourage you to find ways to break from the Light Takers, even if only for an hour a day or a week. Don’t let your light fade because, as I’ve learned from childhood camping trips and barbecues, it is more difficult to start a fire from scratch than to reignite softly burning embers.

Keep the light burning.
Love and Light to you always,

 

The Dragonfly’s Student

The Inspiration of Music

Her name was Mary. She danced across the stage as the radio played and I fell in love with the song. It was written for me, that lonely girl sitting in the library at the University of Miami trying to dig through her imagination for a story due the next day in her Creative Writing class. She toyed with the idea of abandoning her dream of being a writer, but … not yet … she wasn’t ready to give up.

The muses came through. That’s the first time I realized music could open some portal in my brain to allow my creativity out.

Sitting  surrounded by books at a table in that open room, Sony Walkman playing my Bruce Springsteen album, I wrote a short story about a girl at the burial of her love, a soldier killed in Vietnam.

In this story, I imagined things I had never witnessed. I just knew that caskets used to be lowered with ropes. I imagined her tugging at his class ring on her gold necklace as she stood under a tree on a hill. I imagined a life in the American Midwest even though I didn’t live there until much later. With the inspiration of music, I was able to imagine a small-town life that big-city me had never even dreamed of. And, with the inspiration of music, as in Bruce Springsteen’s Thunder Road, I finally accepted that I am a writer, even if no one pays me for my stories.

 

 

“The screen door slams, Mary’s dress sways.”

That day, I became Mary and Springsteen’s words were mine. I never tried to sell that story because I thought I had plagiarized from the Boss — down even to the throwing of roses in the rain. Only later, only now, do I realize that the story was mine, only inspired by music.

Now, as I continue to write the stories in my heart, I tap into that place in the Universe where the words are channeled into my soul and flow through my fingertips. A sparkling river of energy like the magical music playing in my earsI realize now that whatever allows me to open up to the Universal creativity is blessed and to be welcomed. It is not an act of plagiarism to write novels while music is playing. The music guides me when I have questions and soothes me when I have doubts.

As this dance continues, pairing me with music and stories, I tip my hat always to the musicians, my muses — Bruce Springsteen, Dramagods, Gemini Syndrome, Avenged Sevenfold, Evanescence, and the others I will continue to thank as this blog continues. Thank you for sparking that flame in my heart that helps me connect with my soul.

I hope I am worthy of their inspiration.

 

Love and light, my friends,

 

The Dragonfly’s Student

 

 

The Challenge of Faith

“Here I Am, Lord,” has always been my favorite song.

Faith is a shaky concept. We can toss around the word, believing whole-heartedly that if God asked us to do something for Him, we wouldn’t even stop for a pee-break. We thrive on the belief that we would be just as faithful as the girl who got pregnant out of wedlock and the man who almost killed his son. The truth is more sordid than our own simple realities.

Noah was alone when the Creator broke the news that He was planning to flood the world. He had to convince his wife and his sons that he wasn’t crazy. That, really, someone in some place somewhere between his asleep and awake states, had convinced him to build an ark where he would place two of every type of animal in the world.

Noah was faced with a new reality. I wonder what finally convinced him that this voice was God. I wonder what would happen if the same were to happen to a Noah from the 21st century.

What if the first vision was brushed off as “the work of the devil.” I wonder what would have happened if Noah had tossed away the set of tools Home Depot mysteriously left on his driveway.

What if his “no” had been interpreted by God as a denial of Him? Would Noah have gotten arrested on suspicion of robbery for stealing the mysterious delivery? Or would that have just been a scare?

What if the next message from God had come to Noah during his kid’s baseball game one night when a mysterious name flashed on the scoreboard like a scene from an old baseball movie? Would Noah have reacted immediately or would he have waited to act until his kids were grown up and out of the house so that they wouldn’t judge him like some kind of crazy person?

Do any of us understand what it truly means to sacrifice everything to follow the path our faith has put before us? I don’t think the path of faith is an easy cobblestone one. I think the road will be full of potholes and uprooted trees as if after a hurricane. Throw in a couple of hecklers and it might be right up there with Noah’s challenge because, really, the people shunned him and thought he was crazy up until the first drops fell.

Most of us are willing to accept the gifts God or Spirit offers us. We would be happy to accept that we are perfectly loved, but would we be willing to prove that we are worthy of that love? I don’t envy Noah’s place in the history books of faith. He is accepted as a great and faithful man who saved that part of humanity that deserved to be saved, but he went through every hardship imaginable. Would any of my readers accept his challenge today?

How quickly would Facebook and Twitter drag our faces through the mud because what we are doing in the name of faith and obedience is something that “it’s just not done!” How many parents would shake their heads at the daughter who went crazy or the son who fell off the wagon?

Which of us would be willing to throw down our safe lives to follow the path of faith in exchange for a chapter in the history books of our faiths?

I really wonder. I know God would keep His end of the bargain.

Food for thought, I guess.

The Dragonfly’s Student