A Thousand Unseen Helping Hands

An excerpt from my second day back at writing: Journal entry May 15, 2015. 

An excerpt from my second day back at writing: Journal entry May 15, 2015. 

Each morning, I follow a similar routine. I arise from bed and head to the kitchen for my daily dose of caffeine and to fill my big water bottle...then it's back to bed - not for more sleep, but for the start of my work before the day unfolds. I begin my day with a "taking in" and a "pouring out": the ingestion of 32-ounces of water, and the shedding that results from three pages of random writing.

For as long as I can remember, I have written daily in a journal. It has taken many forms over the years: when I first started writing, I was about 20 years old and it was a way for me to get my confusing thoughts about the world sorted out. My therapy was writing it out and getting it out of my head. My journal has evolved over the past 16 years; writing for me now is an eclectic mix of entries: stream of consciousness ramblings, poetry, declarations of intent perhaps one day to be seen through, curriculum ideas, to-do lists, dance routines, prayers. It is still therapeutic to me, although in a much different way now than it was before.

For the past 4 months, I stopped writing. I started noticing my creativity feeling a bit stagnant and ideas for projects weren't circulating as easily from me. It's funny, but somehow, I didn't even really notice that I stopped writing -but, I have been busy with other things - good things - actually, really great things to be more precise. Although life has been moving at a wonderful pace, I felt compelled toward writing again and last week I began a new journal.

It didn't go well. As soon as I picked up my new notebook, I was struck with fatigue and felt immediate resistance to the annoying new composition book. It seemed that I had lost my stride - I asked myself, "How was I ever going to get back into this again and it be as cathartic and rejuvenating as it once was? Dammit, I'm stuck - again." Another interesting aspect I took note of: it felt physically difficult to write. The hand holding my pen felt stilted and almost arthritic. I kept writing. The pen dragged begrudgingly against the page. I felt robotic. I was mechanical. I kept going.

The next morning, water bottle halfway chugged, I pulled the notebook out and already there was a shift. The ink in the pen I was using was gliding across the page. "How quickly things can change when you just keep going," I thought. I didn't just think this thought, though - I felt it. What an incredible feeling, what...possibility. And not remote possibility or the promise of possibility - there was a feel-it-in-my-gut tangibility that had happened practically overnight that felt quite miraculous. I loved that feeling/thought and I reveled in it for a good few days. Still am, actually. 

Things don't have to take a long time to right themselves when you start something. Many times, after a period of rest or leave of absence, getting back to it is going to feel boring, laborious and awkward at first. Stay in it for a minute. Stay a minute longer. Stay. S.T.A.Y. Keep going. Keep going. Keep going. It's miraculous what happens when you tender your little offering of willingness to the universe. Things move and shift to support your endeavor, help comes in ways unexpected - whether it through a wise word from a friend, a random remark from a stranger, a thought that bubbles up that reinvigorates your ambition, or an opportunity that comes along to fatten your bank account. Begin. Begin for the first time, or begin again for the hundredth time. The only important thing is that you begin. Joseph Campbell spoke of "a thousand unseen helping hands" that come about when we take that courageous first (and second and third) step into a new endeavor. I've been witness to this synchronicity many times in my life, in many different ways. You never realize how lucky you are until you have enough trust to take not only take that inital leap of faith, but also enough trust to allow yourself to stay in the situation for just a little while until the unseen hands rally around you to assist you in reaching your highest potential whether it be in your work, your love life, your anything.