Shakti Krahe-Wolf: Midlife Mayhem

“Wild woman are an unexplainable spark of life. They ooze freedom and seek awareness, they belong to nobody but themselves yet give a piece of who they are to everyone they meet. If you have met one, hold on to her, she'll allow you into her chaos but she'll also show you her magic.” ― Nikki Rowe

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I was asked the other day,” how’s midlife?”  I replied,”it’s fucking lonely.”

I’ve hit a wall in my life, and not the kind of wall I can  move, crawl over, or somehow tear down.

This wall is immense, scary as fuck and seems to be coming from my psyche. My psyche may be feeling the archetype of the wall from so much wall allegory and imagery in our world.

On this wall,  is my entire life to this point.  Pictures of my life.

Snippets of memories that are etched in my soul and heart, and those I’d rather burn to ashes that disappear with parts of my mind than remember them.

I am turning 49 this week.

Kind of, my birthday is leap year, so it’s a time traveler’s birthday.  I could be 12 years old or 60, who knows?

This wall showed up three months ago.  I’ve been staring at it ever since.  All of the vital pieces of me, who I am, what I’ve done, who I’ve loved and who I’ve lost. It’s all on this wall.

But the last part of the wall  is where my existential crisis exists.

Loss.

The majority of my life to this point is loss.

The loss of my grandmother, mother, husband, child,  and fur babies.  They were all a part of my physical being, I’ve grieved them throughout this lifetime.

It’s the other losses that are the crisis and the feelings that I am walking through.

The losses of those who are still here, opportunities to connect, ideas that I didn’t share, pictures I didn’t take, vulnerabilities that I’ve hidden, the last part of this wall is my shame.

First third of my life.  Care.Death.Grief.  Care.Death.Grief.  Repeat a few more times.

Second third of my life.  Addiction to marriages. Addiction to eating. Addiction to spending. Addiction to people pleasing. Addiction to fear. Addiction to inauthenticity. Addiction to being an asshole.  Life of fear and life of pain.  Both intermingling to create what I felt at the time was love.

Last third of my life is unknown. But the first two-thirds scare the shit out of me.

What is the meaning anymore?  What then, is the point? I’ve always loved the work of Viktor Frankl, to make meaning, that is our life.  But for some reason, I can’t make meaning of my asshole nature and the outcomes to this point.

I have been an unabashed people pleaser in my life, so that I could fit-in, in order to find my tribe, to find those who would become family to me.

I  make friends in that manner, I miss my family and seek friends to be family. This has not worked well this lifetime.  I’ve needed to be more explicit about that. Fear would not allow it.

Right now though, I have no more fucks to give.

Today at work, in my office, I broke down.  I was crying for about two hours. (Don’t worry, on Friday’s my work place is a mausoleum.)

I was crying while I looked at pictures on my Facebook.  There were so many pictures of people who I no longer see or speak to me or those who have drifted away.  I know and accept they have their reasons.  I am not for everybody.  I know that I am human and   in my raw human state I can say  and do things that just fuck everything apart.

I had said, “I love you” to each of them. I meant each of those words as I do now.  Nothing has changed other than we no  longer speak or connect.

I was suddenly and profoundly lonely.

I lost a friend of 33 years, that’s where it started, this crisis.  I was not given a reason for the loss or the choices made.  I was not worthy of the good bye, or the understanding of why that may happen.

I looked at my belly dance sisters (a term we called one another, that I find ironic today.)

I looked at my art friends, those who have created or taught me to create.

I looked at my writer friends and yoga friends, my church friends.

I looked at spiritual friends and magic friends.

I looked at me eating, laughing, sharing and for a moment belonging.

I see all of this love on the wall.  I am staggered by it, all the love I’ve known and lost, all the love I’ve shared and received.

And yet,  lonely, tired and letting go so that maybe a moment will reach in and create kindred again.

That is what this existential crisis is, a longing.

A longing in my life for belonging.

Not fitting in, but belonging.

The obtuse feelings of alone and yet not depressed, not sad.  Just alone.

I have been questioning everything that is me, has shaped me and is what and who I thought I was and who I am.   I am human, I am vulnerable and I am raw lately. I look at this wall and see EVERY.SINGLE. place where I fucked up.  Where I didn’t know what to do or say.  I didn’t know how to behave or react.  I reacted poorly or well.

I am working to find meaning in my tears of joy and loss.

The tears of two thirds of my life and yet, I don’t know who I want to be when I grow up. The two thirds spent saying goodbye.  And yet, longing for a hello.

I see the wall and it’s contents and yet don’t feel compelled to climb it, I believe at one point it will fall in a storm, when I am ready and when it is ready.  For now, I live in the mean time.  The mean time being the place of quiet and stillness, darkness and wet.

I see the light move through, but no longer chase it like I did.

I no longer gaze at the stars with wonder, but now seek to understand my meaning among them.

I reach for a child I don’t have and long to say so many words.  To hold a creature that I created to belong to that human creature.

I reach for a book, I’ve already read.  I throw it across the room.

I sit in the middle of my living room sobbing.

Staring at the wall, waiting for it to fall, seeking my meaning in longing.

 

 

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23 thoughts on “Existential

  1. Maggie says:

    And this is why we both feel the need for coffee this week. You can verbalize what I feel. I ask nothing but mutual respect and caring. Listen and talk. Or quiet. No judgement. Peace.

    Like

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      I am honored that I could verbalize this. I am more honored you read it and responded. Thank you. ❤ you.

      Like

  2. Christy Schwartz says:

    This touched me–made me teary. I’m moved by your struggle. I see you, and I see myself in your words. ❤

    Like

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      Thank you for commenting and reading. I think that midlife is just awkward. I want it to not be and yet, there it is. I see you too! ❤

      Like

  3. Shannon Llewellyn says:

    This is so meaningful to me! I myself, fell into a crying jag here at work in one of our darkened private rooms while dozens of cheery children laughed and played all around me. I am blessed to have met you.
    Shannon

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Roberta Burnam says:

    You know, you sparkle when teaching yoga…..we haven’t had Sunshine since Christmas. I have Seasonal affective disorder and I get out of sorts too..Just know you are loved, let me know how I can help. Right now I will send Reiki your way and practice affirmative prayer, that I’m learning in 4 T class at church…this season of unrest will pass, the lotus will bloom again and you are the lotus. Love, from your friend Robin aka Roberta

    Liked by 1 person

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      Robin, thank you. You’re love and your support of my yoga journey is so wonderful. Thank you for sharing that about my sparkle. ❤

      Like

  5. MyWordJoy says:

    I am so in love with your absolutely stunning way with words. You know I always have been. I have no doubt I always will be. Stay brave, warrior queen. As the tides rise, we shall rise among them – like Phoenix from the depths. Fire cutting through water, untouched. Love through stone, unfaltering. Authenticity in loneliness. Brave.

    I love you now and always. Yes. Always.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Barbara says:

    Heartfelt words … life can certainly be a struggle. I am aware also that with Todd, you have found your soul mate and great love. That is comforting as you navigate through the loss and sorrow 💜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      Barbara, I agree, but I no longer look at people as soul mates, we both realize the finite amount of life, and that my journey to this point and his to this point, we are now looking at ours from this point. That is meaningful indeed. Thank you…<3 centered love.

      Like

  7. Josie says:

    Thank you for sharing these very personal thoughts about your journey. Midlife is where I get to wield my apathy like a machete, cutting back all the overgrowth of bullshit in my life. I see a lot of my own journey in yours and having common experience somehow makes us feel a little less alone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      Thank you Josie, and yes, it is exactly that. Cutting it back, taking it out by the roots. I am so grateful for meeting you this lifetime. ❤

      Like

  8. Kimberly Poling says:

    Just turned 49 in January and I can understand some of your anguish. I have been struggling also but I’m tearing that fucking wall down brick by brick. Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      Kimberly, I think this to be true also, where we cut out at the roots so much of what has made us tired. Much love to you doll! Miss you.

      Like

  9. Olga says:

    Darling, you touched me deeply – thank you. You appear to be on the dark side of the wall now and there’s no easy jump to the light side, so it seems. But what is always available to us is placing our fearful mind in the cradle of loving-kindness and cradle it there, cradle, cradle until its ready to catapult over the wall again. You say you look at the wall and see all your failings. Good. Now look at the wall just as keenly and see all your victories, moments of beauty, connections and love. Be honest with yourself. Failing are just a part of that wall, just some of the ‘bricks’. I would love to now read about the joys and gratitude that the wall has in it. Weathe them into some beautiful honest sentences of yours!

    Self-love, we need to bring forward reaervoires of tough self-love. Self-love is like a bird caring for her ugly ducklings. In it, you’re both the loving mother and the duckling: blind, raw, desperate for attention. We are a poignant mixture that isn’t all that beautiful and yet is dearly loved.

    One thing you can never loose is being a bird to yourself. That love is always there to raise the duckling inside to a new lovelier state.

    Sending you a big warm hug!
    And thank you again for sharing xxx

    Like

  10. Becky mann says:

    Your words are incredibly deep and insightful… I appreciate your openness and vulnerability. This thing called life is a tough row… only the brave have courage to look at the “wall”. Thank you for sharing ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  11. It takes such courage to sit with longing, loneliness and sadness without letting it harden into depression or bitterness. To remain defenseless and open. To wait. Though I’m not one to wield Bible verses, a favorite of mine and my late mom’s comes to mind (from memory, so not exact): “and they that wait upon the Lord (I think of this more broadly, as waiting for a response from the divine) shall renew their strength; they shall rise up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” You are an eagle. You will rise up.

    Like

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      Laurie, thank you. You are a dear heart in this world, this too will not shade me nor will I grow bitter or depressed, but for now I am working to find myself where I belong. Where I am to be in this world. I know a part of this journey is yoga, but the part of belonging to myself. That’s what I am desiring.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. WOW… it is like you are writing about me. You are amazing. I too sit alone and wonder what is going on… what happened.. where are those that are my “friends”.. do I have anyone?.. Although my mother is still living and I have a son who lives with me, I still feel alone. This piece was amazing… You are amazing… I love you bunches.

    Like

  13. Julie says:

    Your words hold so much meaning for me! I love you and the way you are able to verbalize what so many feel! Thank for being in my life! 💜🕉💜

    Like

  14. msjamie says:

    Sending you love ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Frog says:

    I understand. The world is a different place for me at 50. I was very much into God my whole life. He is gone. He never was. He was my imaginary strength. Colors seem surreal sometimes and while I am very lonely, I keep hidden. I keep busy to not lose my mind, but I surely keep my heart tucked in tightly. It’s scary to be lonely but also feels safer to keep withdrawn. Im sorry that you are hurting. I cannot fix that, but I can tell you that I have admired you since I met you on that yoga retreat. And this blog! You are very brave and strong! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. blackdahaliayoga says:

      It is so funny you say this, I too am having a crisis with the God of my understanding, the one who stood by me for so long. I am letting go instead of wrestling and yet I still want to believe the belief I have for so long. What tied my life together for so long and yet I feel like it’s just pulling me down. I too am lonely, and I too hide, it’s easier for me sometimes, and my heart is most definitely moved away from most. I too have admired you greatly, your energy is amazing and I am so glad we connect. I ❤ you! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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