And so, I ran my way out of my crisis of faith. Faith looks like running shoes and the great outdoors. I have been a runner for many many years and find running outside such a solace; me, my shoes and the natural world. Nature provides a metaphor if I know how to see, and often I go here to worship, to throw my arms up and open to it all…I often meet my fellow broken souls along this path finding their way back to knowing maybe this is truth. Always evolving but always on the path to greater bliss and freedom. And yet, It can be so very goddamn hard to keep going and doing this day after day. I often just feel hopeless and tired and want to escape to the external rungs of some ladder I believe is firm and trustworthy.
Onward. I was sitting in my addiction counseling class Wednesday night feeling like I was going to puke. I was coming down with some sort of stomach bug but I didn’t know it at the time. It didn’t help that earlier that day, I’d received the results from the neuropsychological re-evaluations I had done on three of my four children in December at Mass General Hospital. These lengthy evaluations are pretty much written on leaves of gold, so to speak, as they coming from such esteemed institutions of MGH, and Harvard Medical School. They are crammed with detailed information regarding multiple aspects of each child’s cognitive, academic, behavioral and emotional functioning in the context of their medical diagnoses of Tuberous Sclerosis Complex. Obviously they are very useful for the getting services and accommodations, however, they are heavy.
I left class early, got in my car, and cried hard, all the way home. I mean gut wrenching, weeping and sobbing. I’m no stranger to tears, but it had been awhile since this kind of damn broke loose. I made it home and completely collapsed on the floor crying some more. My 14 year old son came out to comfort me. He thought surely I must have broken up with my boyfriend. I felt moved to explain in no uncertain terms that I felt awful that he, and his sisters had to suffer so much in life due to their having tuberous sclerosis complex. And I was being hugged, by all of them, my beautiful, imperfect children and my beautiful imperfect self.
So thus it is that I found myself broken, on my knees with my arms up to the universe in surrender. A channel, thru which I received 5 children, all magnificent and perfect in their imperfections . I am starting to be able to understand that this is my life’s curriculum to teach them that broken is also cracked. Cracks are how the light gets in. If only I could hold onto this wisdom and bask in it all day long, but alas I within hours after this experience, I was back on earth, washing the dishes, and going for long runs.
On the Mass Central Rail Trail in Rutland, there is a stretch of about 50 yards or so, before the underpass for Charnock Hill Road, where there is a gorge, a great open cut where they blasted years ago, to make way for the trains. I notice the jagged edges and rough spots, with the water leaking thru..like tears, the tree roots jutting out while the trees are still reaching upward despite the erosion, determined to reach the sun. Much like our souls. Underneath what was once a solid part of the earth, now cracked and broken, to make way for humanity. Yet, nature finds its way to adapt and become something of a metaphor for walkers and bikers, now witness to the beauty in the return to nature’s recovery. This path of recovery is starts with being broken, in nature as so in my life. We are all on this path in one way or another and when I give up on my shiny exterior ego and let the love in thru these cracks, my path is directed back to slow dissolution into a richer whole.
Running the Boston Marathon this April to raise money for Tuberous Sclerosis Complex research, ties all this together, in metaphor and life on this planet. #IAMTSC
If interested in more on this, see my page: