Couple of the year: Fear and Change

When I reached the point of being head over heels for an ex of sorts several years ago, I discovered that I had the amazing power to connect any- and everything I experienced, saw, felt, and heard to him. This power was really pretty astonishing, and in discussions and experience with friends, it appears rather widespread. Suddenly, all of life seemed to revolve around that other person and I could think of little else.

I’ve noticed that when the Universe taps me on the head (or as it were, smacks me with a ‘clue-by-four’), I experience a similar reaction. The image that comes to mind is that of the cartoon who gets smacked and sees miniature versions of birds or whatever it was that the cartoon was trying to catch floating around its head. Since I identified this theme of fear and change, it’s everywhere I look. For the past several days, I have been inundated with thoughts, “signs”, literature, conversations, etc., that all relate to fear and change. They’re like a codependent couple, except in this case, fear could survive by itself, but change cannot. Change is the clingy, whiny, annoying partner who refuses to let Fear out of its sight.

Pursuant to my previous entry, and in light of facing this fear and change, I decided to take Doreen Virtue’s advice and begin meditating twice daily. I’ve embraced a routine of drawing a medicine card each morning. Today, I asked Spirit to show me a tool that I already possess that can help me through this time of change. The card I drew was snake – my inner totem. My inner self was the answer to my question and snake was the context in which to view it.

When my friend assisted me in finding my totems, I remember being alarmed at seeing snake as my inner-most totem and even more so after reading about snake. To be honest, I’d never really liked snakes, and perhaps the biblical association to the serpent in Genesis was one of the reasons. Snakes were dangerous, difficult to control, scary (see a theme here?). Over the past year or so, though, I’ve come to appreciate snake and seen it as an animal to be respected – not feared. Each animal totem is associated with one word that is meant to capture the essence of its purpose. Snake is transmutation. To me, though, snake is also about power. Power to not only transform one’s self but to transform how the consequences of any experience will be integrated into the self.

A question I’ve been turning over in my head last night and this morning is ‘Why am I so afraid of this change?’ I don’t think it is just the fact that it is unknown. The unknown in and of itself doesn’t frighten me much. And I realized that it was the effects the change would have on my life that was what I am most anxious about. The last major change I underwent was when I decided to embrace the spiritual path of Paganism, and in doing so, truly identify and embrace who I am. As a result, my relationship with my parents drastically changed and I am still working on building it back up. My relationships with certain friends changed. Certain friendships were lost. In general, that change impacted my life on such a fundamental level that I continue to feel the aftershock of it, three years later and counting. I understood then that is what I fear.

Even as I write this, though, I have to smile. Although that change altered my life completely and was terrifying, it brought so very many blessings (this would be the positive asset search of my session today in counselor-speak). I have made some of the most meaningful friendships that I now possess thanks to this change. I have met some of the most amazing women I know who inspire me every single day and whose love, encouragement, and affirmation were integral in giving me the courage I needed to pursue my dream of graduate school (my angels – Jade, foxchild, mynerva, Opal, Crystal, dragonspring, Tirya). In embracing the spiritual path that fit me best, despite the challenges it introduced, I found myself – an invaluable gift well worth any cost.

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