Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The shape of things

As a child, by dint of personality or birth order, I came to the conclusion that the only way I could change my world was to alter my perspective. I got very good at it. I reframed and reframed, concluding in one philosophical moment in my teens that the earth was in (one) truth still, and the universe twisting around it. My flexible paradigms kept me stimulated and safe from uncomfortable and painful positions, but I realised in early adulthood that ethereality had come at a price. I had given away my power. With some contortion and awkwardness, over many years, I made my way into the driving seat, and backed my own endeavour to keep my wheels on the tarmac, come what may. This is an oversimplification of course, but there is some usefulness in the metaphor that I was now driving my own car. I could turn the wheel, accelerate, back up, choose - and change at will - my destination. It is a joy to me that aspects of my dreams are realised, and I attribute some of that to my 'coming down to earth'. But at the age of 55, I find my existential position is changing again. I no longer want to 'get' anywhere. I have plans and hopes, but I am in a hurry for nothing. To move from road to water as context for my metaphor, It seems to me it is enough that I set my rudder, and learn to relax at the helm. In words that came to me in the silence of a recent Quaker gathering: Let what will be come.
(Forgive me if I sound like I have life wrapped up. I don't.)


  1. At fifty five I suspect you have life far less well wrapped up now than then. At least this is the message I take from your powerful writing here. Wonderful.

  2. Hi Elisabeth, You are absolutely right. The package (never tidily wrapped) is loosening. (An apt picture for both the outside and the inside as years pass!) Thanks again for coming by.