My classes start tomorrow, and in prep - I took a walk to school and back just to be sure I knew how to get there without getting lost. Returning home, I zig-zagged my route just to acquaint myself with the 'hood. That's when I looked up one of the streets and it sunk in: I'm really in Europe... there is absolutely no street in Los Angeles that even looks remotely like any of this. And I think I'm accepting it for what it is.
Before my mother moved to Spain, I gave her a couple of books. Not so much as gifts, but as valuable tools to use. The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron was given to me when I was going through a long, deep dark funk - and it helped me emerge from my cocoon. In return, I bought about a dozen copies of this book and passed it on to people I thought it could help. Mom's copy hasn't been cracked open. I don't blame her - it took me 2 years until I finally started working through mine... and I never got beyond chapter 8. (my copy is long missing as I loaned it to a friend, and it never made its way back to me, and I've been wishing I had it for over a year now)
The second book, also by Julia Cameron is one I was completely unfamiliar with - and maybe I didn't even give it to her at all - it just looks like something I'd have given her, considering the huge changes in her life at the time. It's called Transitions. I pulled this virgin copy off the bookshelf last week, and until last night, it sat on my bedside table ready to be ignored some more.
Until last night. I didn't get far into it, but it now has a crease and a dog-eared page. Here's the segment that awakened me:
"Resistance solidifies grief. We can allow our griefs to dissolve through releasing them to the healing rain of tears. As we weep with loss, our spiritual landscape is made anew. All change carries gain as well as loss. As I release situations which have troubled me, I release, too, my identity as troubled. This shift brings with it intense emotion. Grief is the natural and healing companion of loss. Embraced and surrendered to, grief creates transformations.
Today, I finally walked through the streets and felt the newness of my journey. I was alert, awake and ready for change."Today, I do not deny my feelings of loss. I allow myself to move through them to new growth."
No headphones in my ears (headphones = do not disturb) - just the sounds of the still-quiet Easter Monday street scape. I've also determined that Easter Monday is the day that zombie jesus hangs out eating chocolate with all his peeps.
When I returned home (that was a 5km journey) I sat down and contemplated what my new soundtrack sounds like. I'm hearing accordion. Something like that song in the Wes Anderson short Hotel Chevalier - the song that is playing when Natalie Portman's character enters the scene.
Prior to this move, my constant companion has been this album by a friend of mine, American Hotel - by Mike Brown. I kept driving around Los Angeles,
But those songs were part of the prior-to-my-move funk - when I was reaching my breaking point and ready to leave. It's a uniquely American album, perfect for a road trip. alone.
I'm not in America anymore.
So what's my new soundtrack? I've shed my tears - and I'm ready for my new chapter.