I have to tell you that any sooner and I could not even have posted that picture, but today it feels right.
I want to tell you that I don’t mind the fact that even though I started a 365 Days project it has stretched out because in the end there will be 365 days but through life, chance, and circumstance they have not been consecutive, BUT, I am going back to daily posts now that I have caught my breath even if I only have the wherewithal to say Heidy Ho and leave a picture. It is now a point of honor. And unless I am ill or some unimaginable thing happens, well, I will be here.
I also want to say something about time. People are so time oriented and of course in many ways we have to be. But I also know that time collapses and expands in ways we cannot see with the naked eye so in that sense I am right on course.
As to the title…
You really should try to live as if your house burned down. Of course nothing can prepare you for the real thing but this is something I have given a lot of thought to since the fire. In one fell swoop and in a matter of seconds your life is changed forever and everything you thought you knew doesn’t hold true anymore and things you cherished and thought were so important just really aren’t — I feel sad about some of my belongings, the things from my mom or family members or dear friends but life will go on without them, however, my sweet birds, well, I don’t know when or how I will ever stop crying over them, even though I know they are flying free in the heavens. I have seen their spirits, I feel them around me, I know that they are okay, but as in life when someone dies their spirit has been set free in the most beautiful way but it is the ones left behind who suffer their absence, so, too, my sweet babies…
And it almost sounds like a cliché but it is truly only a cliché if you haven’t lived through an experience when you could have died, many tell you they don’t know how you didn’t, and those beloved by you did die, the thing about how short life is, how ephemeral, how it could all be gone in a flash, well, it is true, frighteningly so… and… freeing, and cleansing, and it throws open the doors to possibilities you wouldn’t, or might not, have entertained before.
There were things before, in my business, that I was afraid to do, but now I’m all like, HELL YES!
There were ways in which I didn’t fully appreciate who I am, my strengths, what I was capable of. The night of the fire after an explosion, an incredibly fast moving fire, and thick, toxic black smoke almost down to the floor in a couple of minutes I got myself, 4 pugs, and Miss Scarlett, my grey parrot, out of the house, got them to safety and went back through the garage to the street to hail the police and fire engines. In a little caftan (and nothing else) and barefoot, and it was cold. For nearly 2 weeks in the hotel I had no clothes but that caftan. I lived in a hotel for 4 weeks having to walk 4 dogs outside several times a day around people and traffic and more and I think all of that is pretty damn good for a woman who is agoraphobic. I made it through, with a lot of help from my loved ones and the dear people at the hotel, and though I have done some real backsliding since I got in the rental house I did what I had to do when I had to do it and I feel proud of myself, and that has empowered me to do even more in my life. I will no longer label myself agoraphobic. I can sometimes leave the house even if rarely. I will build from there. I have a life to live and work to do and by gum I’m going to do it.
It would seem that I am one kickass woman.
I am not the same woman that I was before, and I couldn’t be the woman I am today had I not just been through everything I have been through. Of course I would never wish that experience on anyone and I wish my 4 parrots that died were still with me but I am glad to be who I am today and I know that I will have a completely different life because I went through that horrendous experience. Fire burns away the dross. There are many lessons it is possible to learn while grieving, and in my case, quite literally, that which didn’t kill me has made me stronger.
I have started to rev my engines and I have gotten back to work. Changes are on the way, something big will be announced soon, and I am rocking into this new life with a deep sense of gratitude. As I referenced a couple of posts back, the haiku by Mizuta Masahide (1657-1723)…
“Barn’s burnt down –
I can see the moon.”
… the moon is glowing overhead and I can see my way into a whole new life. The future looks just grand from here…
What would you do if your house burned down? Past specific loss of things in the fire, how do you think you would feel? How would you be changed? Don’t wait until your house burns down to discover all that is waiting for you, all that is possible. Don’t wait until your barn burns down to see the moon.
I send you all so much love.
Afterward… Lest it appear that everything is hunky dorey and I am over it all I assure you that I am not, but one must move forward one step, one moment, one day at a time and that’s what I am doing, still, one will be broadsided by things that catch them unaware. I uploaded this post, went and fed the dogs, and we walked outside for them to go potty. As I stood out there with them all of a sudden there was the shrill siren of a fire engine going down a street somewhere very near here, tears sprang to my eyes and the sound took my breath away. This is a journey, there will never be a destination for any of us in our lives until we are no longer here on earth. I am walking this journey as mindfully as I possibly can. I will make it through…