Contemplating a new normal…. from Marin

Took this one last year...

San Francisco view from park next door

Time here in Marin always seems to move too quickly–can’t believe I’ve been here a week.  It’s been a very strange time for me. In the couple of weeks before I came out here a lot of things blew up.  From the workshop that was supposed to pay for this trip to a close friendship to a lot of things about how I’ve been earning a tiny living…  I know from reading other blogs that it’s a bit odd for the reader when someone mentions big events like that and then fails to provide more info but I now see why people do it–too many readers know too much and I don’t want to air dirty laundry or create division or “say” something that would reflect badly on anyone.  So my story is about my reaction to the sudden topsy-turvy quality of my life with apologies that I’m not going to say what happened.

Nothing has thrown me for a loop this badly for a long time.  In the couple of weeks before coming to CA I spent so much time feeling paralyzed that I’m amazed I got out here with everything I intended to bring.  None of the practices with which I’ve held equanimity for years helped–and those I only used when I managed to shake off the deep freeze enough to do something.  At the same time from some deep place within I knew that the changes I have to make should have been made a long time ago.  My “guidance” has been telling me for several years to quit putting so much time into movement classes and instead put more effort into writing and I’ve just kept right on teaching.  So part of me feels relieved that I’m free of the enmeshment that kept me trying to teach and somewhere in there I know that all will be well.

For me it’s another instance of realizing that my faith and trust in the universe are pretty shallow.  Since I bought a non-refundable ticket and committed to house/cat sitting I came on the trip even though the means of paying for it disappeared and at moments I wrestle with fear about spending the money at this time.  But, as always, being here is balm to my soul and the paralysis quickly lifted.  I’ve let myself just hang out and do whatever crossed my mind for the first week and watched myself move into a better space.  I can see that it’s time to restore my sporadic meditation practice to a more regular role and that I have to get more disciplined about working on the two e-books that are basically put together in my head.

Of course I have to smile at the part of me that thought spiritual practice had moved me beyond getting dragged into such a deeply emotional response.  It wasn’t anywhere close to as dramatic as it once would have been and two weeks of trauma is nothing compared to the months or years of angst the situation once would have produced.  I can thank many years of spiritual practice and study for the improved response but I also have to note that once I fell into paralysis I did not just naturally pull out the practices and when I did they helped only momentarily (though who can say how much they may collectively have contributed to my improved state of mind…).

In the meantime I’m here in the place I love so dearly and have enjoyed seeing old friends and look forward to a number of visits still to come.  By the time I leave I might even be looking forward to the new life that awaits when I go home.


13 thoughts on “Contemplating a new normal…. from Marin

  1. This sounds all too familiar even without all the details. Until my life fell apart in New Mexico a few years ago, I wouldn’t commit myself to writing. It was like the Universe had been saying, “I’ve been trying to tell you that you need to change your life. Do I have your attention now?” Well, that did finally convince me, I needed to travel a new path. Wishing you well as you travel in a new direction.

    • Exactly what I’ve been feeling: “Okay you’ve got my attention now–wish I’d listened the first half dozen times…” If we didn’t live five hours apart I’d ask you to please have coffee with me and share our stories. Have your book on my tablet so I’ll be reading more of your story!

  2. Having hit the proverbial bottom about 2 years ago and not using my tools to get out of it, I can really relate to this post. However, friends who love me anyway presented me with a new tool that changed everything and using this tool has allowed me to sit in a place of emotional comfort long enough to grasp the value of the other tools and use them more readily. As you say, Leigh, just going through that reminded me of how much stronger I have become over the years and how quickly I could settle into a new way of looking at my world and myself, a new way of being. Congratulations to you, dearest Leigh, for going to that place. Thank you for sharing this story.

    • It’s been so nice to see you in your new space–and up from the bottom. Thanks so much for all the support you give this blog. Glad you liked this story.

  3. Hi Leigh,

    Sorry to hear you’ve had some bumps in the road. I’m glad you are in beautiful California. May you be renewed.

    Love, Allis

    Sent from my iPad

  4. p.s. You are such an amazing writer. I’m reading a book by Anne Tyler right now who has had so many best sellers, and you are every bit as talented. I cannot wait to see what your e-books are.


    Sent from my iPad

  5. Leigh,

    I have come to believe that our world falls apart when we won’t make the change we know we need to make. I had a teacher who called this type of thing — the universe giving us the boot. Sounds like you had this experience from what you’re sharing.

    I resonate with what you’re saying about choosing writing over other work. I’m glad you shared what you’re going through because reading your post felt like I was getting a message from the universe through you for myself too, for what I too need to do.

    Hope your stay in SF is blissful!

    I have a feeling your books will bring you prosperity and contentment that your current way of life couldn’t bring. Good writing to you!


    • Yes, I feel like I’ve been given the boot. I’ve been getting the writing message for many years and I’ve been writing but never made any money from it so part of me is skeptical. But I think I’ve needed all these years of writing to get to the “voice” I seem to have found with this blog so in a deep space I think the prosperity arrives with the writing too. Looking forward to watching both our journeys with this!

  6. Pingback: Marin and More Healing… | Not Just Sassy on the Inside

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