On the last Tuesday of the month, many of us in Bloglandia share updates about our "words" for the year. (Honoré hosts, check it out.) It's a really helpful way to reflect back on the month-nearly-ended . . . to see how our "words" have popped up in our worlds. It's especially fascinating to me to see how these words connect - all year - for so many of us. There is some mysterious power in having a word, that's for sure.
"We have so little faith in the ebb and flow of life, of love, of relationships. We leap at the flow of time and resist in terror its ebb. We are afraid it will never return. We insist on permanency, on duration, on continuity; when the only continuity possible in life, as in love, is in growth, in fluidity -- in freedom."
--- Anne Morrow Lindbergh
When I started this year, I was very eager to . . . flow. To move forward -- swiftly, rapidly, with purpose -- even if I didn't exactly know what that meant, or where I'd end up. It was exciting -- and I was ready to dive in. I wasn't really thinking about barriers that might keep me from flowing. Much. I mean, I knew I'd meet up with them, sure (because life). But I was planning to, y'know . . . figure out ways to flow around them; to keep moving despite any barriers. And although I did jot down the phrase "ebb and flow" in my journal when I was first exploring my word back in January, I didn't give it much thought. I was all about the flowing this year; not so much the ebbing.
But. Thanks to the pandemic, that ebbing thing? Much bigger than anticipated!
And, oh how I've been fighting the ebb!
(Because, really. Who wants to ebb, huh? I just want to flow. To go! To move forward. To make change and get on with things and grab what's ahead.)
The pandemic has (unfortunately) gone on for long enough now that I'm getting to a place where I can see some personal growth happening. I'm realizing that I actually need the ebb now and again. That pulling back once in a while . . . is a good thing. Time for sitting in the quiet, dark spaces. Waiting.
I think I resisted so much for so long because, to me, ebbing meant being stuck. (Because I sure felt stuck!) But now, I'm thinking that ebbing . . . is part of flowing.
Yin and yang.
Push and pull.
Lost and found.
Give and take.
Sweet and sour.
Light and dark.
Ebb and flow.
It's been an ebb-time, for sure (much like I experienced during my cancer cycle years ago). Lots of time in the weeds. Plenty of time to reflect and think about what it means. I'm finding resilience, strength, and reserves I'd forgotten I had. Things I never could have imagined back in January.
I still want to flow.
But I'm seeing the benefits from the ebbing, too.
Now, I'm finding that Anne Morrow Lindbergh's words (above) ring true: "the only continuity possible in life . . . is in growth and fluidity. . . "
With some ebbing thrown in for good measure!
How about you? What did you learn from your word this month?