It’s been a wild few weeks here in my little corner of the world. Well, more like a wild month. Actually, now that I think about it, it’s been a pretty wild year. Of course, I know I’m not the only person harboring that sentiment, but, since I can only really tell my story… I moved out of a relationship and into a different house a year and a half ago – and I have since fallen in love with the house itself, and re-discovering life on my own. I traveled to the East Coast for the second time and slept in a train station. (Don’t panic, Mom, it was only for a couple of hours at 5am, and there were more security guys and staff around than passengers.) I introduced myself to both Phoenix and LA for the first time and made some wonderful new friends. But I did not fall in love with LA.
My Facebook account was hacked. It wasn’t fun. When I called my friend and deeply-wise guide… fully freaking out… she told me to find the blessings. See what is possible now that wasn’t before. Well, I do see posts from actual friends and family more often. My new account is also much ‘cleaner’. More professional. And I’ve got that thing on lock-down now.
That friend passed away a couple months ago. To say I was devastated is an understatement. But that’s not the point of the story.
I also got a new car for the second time in 5 years, and had owned it less than two months when I hit a deer. It was my first accident since the accident, the first time I’d personally taken the life of another living thing (except for that time I caught a fish. I didn’t like it then, either.), and the first time I’d been in a vehicle when the air bags deployed. Almost every single one of them. It felt like the car exploded. The guy that pulled over behind me recounted his view of it the same way; like the interior exploded in white. (I don’t know how more people don’t suffocate from that powdery stuff in the airbags. Uf.) My key even broke off – in the ignition, the fob splintered and the majority of it landed in the passenger’s side corner of the windshield. Wild.
When the repair shop guy called, I joked, musing that it kind of felt like my car over-reacted. He agreed. It certainly hadn’t seemed THAT life-threatening. The deer, I’m sure, would disagree.
It wasn’t funny, though, when he told me it would probably be a month before I got my car back. A month?!! As it turns out, the parts for two-month-old cars aren’t necessarily available for retail sale, the part numbers aren’t in the estimating software, and some of the pieces of my brand-new-baby would have to be shipped from… wherever he might be able to find them. Perhaps off the assembly lines. All of which takes a lot longer than going to the shelf in the warehouse and selecting the correct washer.
I was rattled by the incident itself, of course, but more so because I couldn’t figure out why I would create such a chaotic experience for myself. Believing, as I do, that we are elements of god, and therefore create our own lives – at least in part – I firmly believed I had somehow “asked” for this. I retraced my mental steps. Nope. No requests to slow down my work, dis-able my understanding of freedom, or eliminate my weekly hikes… When I got still and really looked at the way my heart felt, it didn’t seem to be about the car – in fact I felt like I loved the car even more. It didn’t seem to be about the hike Rumi and I had been about to embark upon. It didn’t feel like it was about work, or any of my relationships…
Then the insurance adjuster called.
He asked the normal questions, we got his paperwork filled out, and just as he was about to say good-bye, he said, “Say, I’ve been thinking about buying a Subaru Crosstrek. Did you feel safe?”
“Yes.” I answered wholeheartedly, enthusiastically, gratefully even, and without really thinking about it. I had felt safe. Maybe even “over-safe”. But I didn’t elaborate because those four words had struck something in me. I had felt safe – very safe. I had also asked to feel safe. That was it. That was why I had created that accident – to remind myself I was safe.
I think there’s a quest for security, to a degree, in all of us. We sleep better when we know the odds are good that we’ll live through the night. We are more inclined to take a trip if we’re reasonably sure the car won’t break down – or explode. We’re more likely to take risks professionally if we know we either have the resources available to survive if the reward doesn’t pan out, or we know that we can easily find another job. That last one is where I was floundering. One of the very few drawbacks to living life as a single person, a freelancer, a creative – especially all three – is that you never really know. My financial resources ebb and flow. Fasting and feasting and all that. Recently I have been toying with the idea of embarking on a new project that would require me to really just “jump”. Take the risk. I want to do it. I can feel my heart wanting it. But the idea of letting go of the little threads of security I’ve managed to tie together professionally, is a little scary. So I’d been pleading with the Universe, my highest self, to send me a sign that it was going to be OK. That I would be safe.
*As I comb white car-ceiling fibers out of my hair* Thank you, Universe. Message received. That’s enough for awhile.
But, there’s more. More good. Because – as my friend reminded me early last year – the other thing I choose to believe about these kinds of experiences – most kinds of experiences, actually – is that they are RICH with opportunities. Not just one, but lots. Lots of ways to see the good, to GROW. To find the blessings and see the new possibilities.
I walked more, I rode my bicycle more, I stayed home when it was raining, and was forced to ask for help when staying home wasn’t feasible. Those were valuable experiences. I plan to do more of those things. Even if they are uncomfortable. And, somehow, I fell in love with my car more. I practically danced into the repair shop to plop down my deductible payment. They all laughed and celebrated with me. I nearly wiggled out of my skin as I headed toward my car. We’ve been through some STUFF now, that car and I. We’re buds.
Most importantly, though, I can see the good. It’s been a wild… Well, it’s been wild for awhile now. But it’s ok. It’s a fun ride. And I’m safe.