liz barker home

humble endings and clear beginnings

blue gem

Wow, it sure has taken a long time for me to get back on here. But here I am. Inspired. Awake to life. And ready to share myself. My words. My art. My me.

The idea of publishing my writing in any way has had me frozen. For a while now, I have known it needed to begin but did not know where to start. I always thought I needed to have it all together first. I needed to have something valid or important to say. I needed for it to mean something, go somewhere. Be perfect. Hmm, how about just this. How about just expressing who I am right now with nothing in particular to say, and nowhere in particular to say it.

I have been so uninspired lately. Really feeling I needed to find my ‘true’ purpose in life, while simultaneously feeling such a lack of any purpose at all. Lack of motivation.  Having just come out of a long-term relationship earlier in the year, in which my partner and I raised two children who are now 9 and 11, I have realised I have been hiding under the warm blanket of comfort and familiarity. It’s been lovely in there. Cosy. Certainly hard at times, so painful a lot of the time but even so, the harder choice has been to let go and step up into unfamiliar territory. Into the unknown. Into… ‘Oh my god, I don’t know what the fuck?’.

It took lots of guts to let the relationship fall apart after fifteen years, as I feel there is still much love between us and a strong joint commitment to the children. However, since the moment when the decision was made, I never doubted it was right. Even with all the grief, the loss of the family unit, seeing the children’s grief, the all being in it together nice feelings, collective home caring, sharing decisions, deep love, all the nice parts of being together… still, separating feels right.  Yesterday I saw how the endless painful struggle of our relating is truly dying. The body of which lies on its deathbed, occasionally still struggling for dear life. Fighting to still have a voice, play a part. Knowing the end is near, but not ready to give in. Even that brings tears, even though that part caused so much suffering. It’s a letting go of the familiar. Grief, it’s really hard.

Yesterday I faced my failure in all of that. Failure to be the perfect wife, perfect lover, perfect mum, perfect homemaker, perfect daughter in law. I have failed, yes, failed to live up to my ideals, failed to make the relationship work. Of course, I don’t even believe in failure. So what is this feeling then? Why is it here?

Called to find out, I ventured deep into this grief and it led me down deep into the notion of failure. What I found was a collection of small sad and lonely disowned and neglected parts of me. Like a little orphanage of broken children inside me, in a broken house, on a run-down street. So sad, and hurt by my self-doubt, neglected by my disowning, punished again and again by my bypassing them.  I realised that trying to live up to my perfect standard was neglecting some of my most precious parts. I certainly have failed these little ones. So now I find myself a caretaker of many lost and broken sweet souls. All imperfectly beautiful. And if I listen closely, they each have a voice. They are leading me back to myself. I feel like I am in the right place here. Yes, here, I feel my purpose. I am restoring this broken down and haunted internal landscape into a thriving loving abundant pleasurescape.  I am so willing and humbled be returning to my imperfect self. I love my imperfection. My unique blend of humanness.

So yesterday was a big day, I reached out for the support I needed and last night I slept well.

I woke today with something new. What I might call a passionate zest for life. ..  hmm zest for life.. passionate even. That is new. I like it. Passionfruit lime zest. I am inspired to step into my writing, my painting, and particularly my sharing. I could not wait to get on my computer to write this and post it up on my long-neglected website. I have felt this before, this push towards something, but always something else holds me back. It’s the old need to be perfect. Now I have failed so miserably and perfectly at that, maybe I can get on with it. Live my life. Purposefully. Alive and imperfect.

Humbled by life, I sit in the dark. In my quiet cave inside. In the infinitely black and soft quiet space…. It feels so alone here, and maybe that’s ok. I take a match to light my single candle. The match goes out. I sit longer, quieter, then try another match. But I am not ready. I know the time will come. It can’t be rushed. So I rest here, I fall asleep for I don’t know how long…. I am gently awoken later by the soft dim light of the flickering candle. It is already alight. I sit in awe and gratitude for the beings who lit it, those ones who love me. Those who look out for me. How did they get in here. Maybe I am not so alone after all. For a long time, I sit in this gratitude focusing on the one single flame in the dark. It is so beautiful. Sweet. innocent and unassuming. Eventually, I am moved to tears, they flow freely, easily, I love them. As they ease a little, I see glimpses of coloured sparkles through my sweet loved tears. Light refracted and distorted through the salty droplets. But coloured light? from where? Slowly I am moved to look around deeper into the blackness engulfing me. The deep dark soft velvety familiar blackness is everywhere, infinite, almost unbearably so… and yet. Coming into my vision on the floor of the cave is a carpet-like covering of coloured jewels of every colour and shape imaginable. Sparkling and glistening in the dim light of the one candle, within the depth of the darkness. The place is filled with treasures. It is an exquisitely beautiful contrast of nothing and everything. Everything within the nothing. As I focus more they seem to glow themselves. Beaconing me. And one by one I recognise them. These are the jewels I have worked so hard for. These are my life’s work so far. Gifts from the universe. Sitting…waiting, in the softest quietest place in my being. My gifts to the world. Not everyone can see them, even to me they elude the eye. In fact, only a special few will ever recognise their existence. And that’s ok. I know they are here. I know they are here to be shared.

I pick up one gem. It is roundish and soft-edged, organic but slightly angular shaped. It is a pale light bluish hue, with sharp deep dark blue shards partly obscured inside its form. Strangely, it is somehow both opaque and transparent, like the images of Uranus in my daughters google search last night. Gaseous. It has a clear and solid quality, yet soft and velvety on my fingertips, almost pliable. It is peaceful, understanding and accepting. It is sweet and small yet somehow vast. It is both a beginning and an ending. It invites my clear communication.

So, here is my voice.

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