Location and the Human SpiritBy admin | May 4th, 2011 | Category: Columns, October 2009 | No Comments »
” It is inevitable that some defeat will enter even the most victorious life. The human spirit is never finished when it is defeated . . . it is finished when it surrenders.” Ben Stein, Actor, Lawyer and Writer
I’ve recently moved to the desert, Palm Springs, that is. Before I moved but after I found a place, I was looking forward to taking massage therapy classes in September and maybe meeting a few friends along the way. Sadly, things didn’t work out as planned. The funding for the school fell through and I found myself scrambling to make my own ends meet.
This has been a tough summer. Aside from having a wonderful time while my daughter has been out here visiting me, I’ve been a little lonely, sometimes a little depressed. Money was scarce, and I was new in a new place. Isolated from family and friends, I had to go within to find a sense of balance.
It gets hot out here. I mean hot! Walking outside in August is like walking past the open door of a very hot oven. So being inside in the nice cool air conditioning, whether at home, the library, or the movies, is the best place to be. Because it was so hot, I was afraid to go out by myself, and the dilemma was that I hadn’t made friends yet. But that would change.
I never thought Palm Springs would be so good to me, but after being here about thirty days, I started meeting people, making friends, and doing work I love. My intention was to make the best of this place, but it has come to make the best of me.
I love my little condo. In spite of the heat, it remains at least 15 to 20 degrees cooler than the temperature outside. Living in my last home was like being in a cave. The sun never came through, no matter how many windows and doors I opened. Here I look out my balcony and see a lot of sunshine.
It is windy here. As the wind encourages the palms to sway, its sound soothes me. I find that opening the doors in the morning enhances my meditation. I have begun to find my balance out here.
I have found people to be friendly and welcoming. This has not always been true for me, as I’ve spent many a day alone in other places I’ve lived. I’m tempted to believe it’s because of where I live. But recently I considered that maybe I’m ready for a change, and the change has come.
To embrace change is a challenge. I find routine very soothing. I know what to expect and so there are no surprises. Why I decided to walk out from the cliff, I’ll never know.
In the tarot the fool steps out from the cliff to fall perhaps to the rocks below. Will he be crushed, or will he somehow be saved from a certain death? I’ve been so lonely at times that I couldn’t stand it. And then I’d take a walk or listen to the wind. Somehow I made it through one moment and into the next. And I’ve begun to embrace being alone and all its benefits. I’ve begun to enjoy my own company. I never thought I’d be enough for me. The fool learns to take it one step at a time, and who knows, maybe there will be a branch to break his fall.
I’ve had owls perch on my balcony and humming birds fly so close to me I could catch them. I’ve even seen the full moon in all its grandeur from my window, and recently I’ve discovered hiking in the desert . . . with friends of course. I’m still not going to go there alone. Making friends has been the most joy of all.
I’ve begun to laugh and my heart has begun to expand. By experiencing my joy within somehow others have come along to share that joy with me. Funny how you realize the sun was shining the whole time you were sitting in the dark. You just couldn’t see that it shone from within. I’ve begun to feel it from deep inside me. I hope you can take a moment and discover this within yourself. I’m sure I’ve discovered some new thing. What a novel idea that joy can come from within! Isn’t that what we’ve always been told? Yes. And now I believe it!
I’m happy that I did not surrender to the loneliness. Otherwise I wouldn’t experience the expansive moon on the moonlight hike I’m going on with a few friends tonight. Maybe you can join me sometime!
Written by Lisa Trimarchi