Tuesday, May 7, 2013

On the edge...

To get the full benefit of walking a Labyrinth, you start at the outside edge and work your way to the center, following a clearly delineated path.  Perhaps as we walk the labyrinth of our own journeys, we must start at the edges, and as we walk, gain the courage and  momentum we need to continue long enough to find our own centers.

I'm beginning to think that I spend a lot of time living on the edge:  not that precipice kind of edge where if you take the wrong step, or step the wrong way, that you're likely to fall off, but the ' on the periphery of things' kind of edge, if you know what I mean.

What got me to thinking about it were some recent problems with my left knee. It kept shifting out of place, making walking very difficult and extremely painful. In fact, my chiropractor has put it back in place four times in the last 10 days!  Each time, it's shifted back out again.

So if everything happens for a reason, what was the reason my knee kept shifting? ( My son says I find a meaning for everything.   I don't think he means it as a compliment!) :)  So I turned to Louise Hay's book, Heal Your Body, and took a look at what it said about knee problems:  Stubborn ego and pride ( didn't seem to fit.) Inability to bend. ( Hah! I don' t think so, not after what happened with the houses!) Fear. ( Hmmmm, pause for thought.) Inflexibility. (Nope, not working for me either.) Won't give in. (From my current perspective, that just didn't seem to be it either.)

So I let it sit in the back of my mind to percolate. And then on Monday, during a visit to the podiatrist to set a date for surgery to fix two hammer toes (one on each foot! and just to be consistent here, according to Ms. Hay, toes represent the minor details of the future.) and to find out what was causing the pain on the outer edge of my left foot, I  mentioned to him that I was having problems with my knee. As soon as I told him that, he touched a point on the edge of my left foot, just below a bony protuberance, and the pain was so intense that I almost jumped out of the chair!  Giving me a moment to settle, he then reached up and touched a point on the inside edge of my knee.  Again, the pain was intense.

He told me the pain in my knee wasn't about my knee so much as it was about my foot!  I had been walking on the outside edge of my foot, instead of standing centered on the whole of it, and because of that, the muscles had tightened and twisted trying to compensate!

What does Louise Hay say about foot problems?  "Fear of the future and of not stepping forward in life."  WOW! Talk about hitting a nail on the head!  And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I have noticed over the past several weeks that when I sit down for any length of time, my left foot is always resting on its edge.  I  never did that before. So why now?

It's really hard to move fully forward if I'm not walking centered and completely engaged!  For many years I've had problems with my feet - long before I got into Reiki and came to believing how I now believe. I even remember a friend of mine, Nancy Tolles, who does another amazing healing technique called ortho-bionomy (www.ortho-bionomy.org ) telling me once when she was working on my feet, that it was as if my upper body wanted to move forward and my feet were saying : NO, NO, NO!  And she knew this just because of what she was seeing as she worked on my body and saw how it all connected, or didn't!

So I think it's time to be willing to plant my feet firmly, well centered, and move forward from that perspective, instead of from the edge of things. What does that mean? Well, I recently just picked up a book from my bookshelf that has been waiting for my attention for quite some time,  Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander, MD , and the quote, by Albert Einstein, that caught my attention was:  I must be willing to give up  what I am, in order to become what I will be.  The title of the chapter was "A Final Dilemma."  Now there's food for thought!

If I'm going to move forward in the way that God wants me to, I can't be on the periphery of the change. I can't do new little things on the side while continuing to live my life mostly by sticking to the old safe ways that have worked these past ten years. I keep thinking that I can  hold onto the old and bring the new in bit by bit.  I want to do it that way because I'm afraid of what's ahead. Or more precisely, because I can't see what's ahead. I want to find a safe way to move forward and know that it's safe, before I'm willing to commit to walking the path fully, both feet firmly on the ground.

It's kind of like when Mother Mary came to me when I was working at Holy Family and said: "I have work for you to do and you can't do it here."  I tried to work part time at the old job, while working part time at the new. It didn't take long before she came back and said: "I didn't tell you to keep a lifeline. I told you to leave!"

I haven't been willing to let go of the rope. (Hmmm, what was that Louise Hay said about knee problems: Inflexibility. Won't give in? Guess that fits too, wouldn't you say?)  I've been trying to figure out a way to keep the lifeline of the old ways, while struggling to figure out what the new ways are.  I guess as Einstein says, I need to be willing to let go in order to become. Or as we so often hear, I need to be willing to " Let go and let God!"  ( I think it's pretty ironic, too, that having the surgery on my feet means I will be wearing those funky, clunky orthopedic shoes for a couple of weeks that will force my feet to be firmly, flatly planted as I walk!  I just love God's sense of humor! )

So if you're trying to make a change in your own life, you might want to take a look to see if both feet are firmly planted, centered and fully engaged in the change process, or if , like I have been, you are simply walking on the edge, waiting to know that it's safe.