Holding Sacred Space

Sacred / Scared

Switch one letter and not only is the word changed, but so is the meaning. That opens up a whole new conversation about fear; fear of the known and fear of the unknown. I can admit that I own all of it in every form.

Recently, I was chatting about sacred space and how to define that concept. I wasn’t quite sure I knew enough about it to offer an intelligent explanation that would make sense-I’m still not sure it makes sense for a lot of reasons, but I know that it accurately describes how I’m feeling.

When we hold space, we release control. Yup, that’s about right.

It’s another way to show unconditional love. It’s SCARY.

According to GoodTherapy.org, around the midpoint of life, we start picking up hints that we’re not going to live forever. In Once Upon a Midlife, Allan Chinen describes how shocking this realization can be, accompanied by anxiety and grief.

Especially at such a point, a sense of the sacred can act to ground us. As the fact of “me” begins to lose its apparent guarantee of continuance as well as its centrality (because how central to the universe can I be if I’m not going to be around?), the universe is less and less about me. But perhaps I become more and more about something else, something larger than me.

As above, so below…

Carl Jung notes that, in this way, the ego becomes relativized and the process of individualization—becoming wholly who we were meant to be—is accomplished. We begin to live in a system of meaning where the earth revolves around the sun, the sun rotates through the galaxy, and the galaxy itself follows its own great attractor. Our experience then seems to participate in larger movements, whether those are our family or a cause in which we believe or humanity in general, a spiritual pathway or the life of the universe.

Everyone has trauma.

The only way through trauma is to feel it. If a person doesn’t feel their pain, their anger, their fear—if they instead repress it—it grows and festers, like a sliver that doesn’t get pulled out. But feelings like pain, anger and fear are painful and scary!  Feeling them isn’t fun. It takes a great amount of courage and strength to do so.

Holding space means letting go of judgment, of opening your heart and lending your courage; your strength. It means being there or not being there but communicating a safe environment like a safety net for someone you care for to exorcise the hurt within them.

Allowing that person to cry, to scream, to shudder; witnessing their authentic experience and reacting with love and acceptance to the extent that you are able, is a powerful way to support them in this most important spiritual and emotional work, holding hands physically and/or emotionally to walk through their journey of self discovery.

For me, it’s a little different. It might not make sense to anyone else but I visualize holding space more like a drawer I’ve cleared out in my bedroom or a space I’ve left empty in my heart. Being that resolute and solitary lighthouse, that beacon of shining white light on a dark and stormy night, blinking through the fog.

For me, this is sacred — even though at times it scares me to death.

 

(Featured image by Google/Pinterest)

 

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De-tri-tus

Definition: waste or debris of any kind.

It’s a fact that our individual personas embody a plethora of idiosyncrasies, quirks.

Anima is the source of the female part of personality and animus is the source of the male part.

Anima is Carl Jung‘s term for the inner part of the personality or character, as opposed to the persona or outer part.

Facets.

Diamonds.

Yin and yang.

And then there’s me…

I don’t know if it’s a male/female thing, but I’ve got two powerful forces inside me that fight it out on a regular basis.

Side One: Clean freak. A coaster under every cup. Sparkling windows. Pristine bleached tile and grout. Yes, you CAN eat off my floors.

Side Two: Packrat. Bubble wrap saver, Box hoarder. Receipts from 1985 to present.

Regarding old bills and receipts,  I’m not sure if the rule is to keep them for seven years or ten years, so I’ve settled on forever, just to be safe.

Once a year, I roll up my sleeves, gird my loins, and purge the office of all the detritus that I can bear to throw out.

…Empty WinFax box from 1997…Keep or toss?
…Receipt from a chair purchased in 1985 we no longer have. Keep or toss?
…Wrinkled and then refolded tissue paper from a thousand birthdays and holidays. Keep or toss?

Here’s a wonderful elliptical that shares space in my multi-use office, sewing/crafting room – what a mess.

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

I threw most of the boxes away and all of the decades old wrapping paper. I saved the bubble wrap; I HAD to, ‘cos well, you never know when you’ll need it, right?

It was painful, but I feel cleansed.

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

Boxes and boxes of old phones boxes. Just empty boxes. Gone.

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

Nice neat books and financial documents.
Well, mostly nice and neat, definitely better than they were.
Look closely and you’ll see all of Emily Giffen’s books. I love her!

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

All my crafting supplies nicely organized.

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

Seashells, seashells, and rocks.

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

Every office needs a sofa, right? 

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

The view.

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

And finally, this is where the magic happens, my workspace, with a pretty little MacAir, ginger tea, and hand sanitizer.

 ***Notice how the dinosaur computer is a wonderful canvas for notes and pictures.

You didn’t think I’d be able to throw everything away, did you?
That’s something I’ll put off ’til next year, or the year after.

There’s no hurry; I’m sure I’ll have a brand new collection of empty boxes by then.

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Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife.

One last thing…my Retin-A ; save or toss? If I cut it open, I can probably scrape out the very last bit. We wouldn’t want to waste any of it, right?

What do you think?

offices

Photo property of Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife