It was one of those dreams…again…early in the morning, barely awake. I had come across a bicycle out on the street, abandoned. So I took it home, knowing it had been left for me. And then all sorts of magical things began to happen…but wait, if this is a magical bicycle…
I can’t have a magical life…if too many good things happen, then the bad things will be really bad. And I heard “It doesn’t work that way anymore. This is the age of your enlightenment.”
So, I’m keeping the bike…
One morning recently I woke hearing this song. Where the bleep did THAT come from? I mean, I probably heard Dean Martin sing it on television when I was a kid (and TV was still in black and white!) and I’m sure I saw My Fair Lady, also as a kid…but that’s been a few years- like forty, give or take…
So, why this song? Why now? It absolutely changed my state of consciousness. It was God. Singing. To. Me.
And I share this with you, whoever should happen to be reading this, now…because it is for you, too. It is for us to get it, once and for all…he is waiting, on the street where we live…he’s happier there. Go look, he left you a bicycle.
My heart is broken. My friend Dick DeVinney passed away yesterday. He and my dear friend Marion had owned Synchronicity Gallery in Glen Arbor, Michigan for seventeen years before selling it and retiring back to their native Grand Rapids. They had employed me for nine years, but they became my family, too. This picture was taken with my iphone at ArtPrize this past fall…we had such fun.
Dick was an accomplished musician, choir director, teacher and author of both music textbooks and a novel, an untiring supporter of the arts in northern Michigan. He and Marion founded the Celebrations Art Show at the First United Methodist Church of Grand Rapids many years ago, and that show has grown since.
More importantly, Dick was a remarkable human. He never met a stranger. He fought for equal rights all of his life, he was a loving husband and father above all else, a “mensch”. It was a privilege to have him in my life…and my world is a little dimmer today…although he would say to me “try to remain calm”…I will miss him.
She says people are sick and tired of being afraid. I know I am. But I am in it, this “shitstorm” of shame and guilt and fear…the street fight of my life. Vulnerability, come to find out, is my greatest strength. And I am blessed with “move the body” friends who I can count on to show up for me no matter what; I have won the friend lottery. They live in vulnerability, too…and I am learning how to show up for them; that is my greatest moment of honor. As Brene Brown says, that is when I am aligned with my values, and courage is my value:
Anyone who has been around me for any length of time has heard me quip, “I’d tell you my whole story all at once, but then you might not buy my book.” and they laugh…finally, perhaps, at the age of fifty-nine (damn, I wish I’d have gotten wiser younger!) I am beginning to realize that I need to choose more carefully those with whom I can trust my story:
The bottom line here is that I want to live wholeheartedly. Perhaps for the first time in my life I understand the stakes. None of us are getting out of here alive, but if I cannot have less fear in my days, let me meet those days with courage and the grace to show up for the street fight armed only with vulnerability.
Put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into the conversation…for the nature of reality, it turns out, is a conversation. David Whyte has been my favorite poet for many years, since a friend gave me his newly published “The House of Belonging.” There are few lives lived in such genius, and we ought to take full advantage of their willingness to join with us…I’m sure he could have gotten a janitorial position with Will had he not been so brave. Every minute of this twenty minute talk is chock full of help for those of us busy shaping ourselves to fit this world.
So may we, in this life, TRUST to those elements we have yet to see or imagine…