This year, I chose "bridge" as my grounding word; as my hopeful word; my lifeline, my anchor, my lofty goal.
This weekend, as the new year opened up to new possibilities, I met it with a deep funk. And I second guessed my choice. "Can't I just choose a word like Joy or Soar or Balance or Presence like I have in years past? One that doesn't feel so hard?"
Because bridging, right now, for me, feels hard. Connecting those internal parts that feel so separate, those relationships that have chasms of distance between them, those ideals that I cannot imagine how to live in alignment with.
The funkier my funk became, the more I thought, "Bridges are too hard. Joy. Definitely choose Joy."
But darned if I don't have to build a bridge to get from this dark mood to Joy. OK, fine, Bridge. I'll try.
My funk is emotional. It's tied to the new year and wanting to turn the page on what has been challenging (emotions, relationships, politics). It's me, wanting to join all of those people on Facebook reveling in their families, traveling to parts unknown, connected to nature...in love, loving....and me, not knowing how to get there.
My essence knew the answer to building this bridge from "yuck" to "yes":
"Get thyself to nature," it encouraged. "Let your emotional self bask in beauty. Let spirit speak to your emotions and let your emotions speak back. Walk by the ocean, in the elements."
I took the advice. I had the destination clearly in my sight. Point Lobos. One of my favorite places on the planet. For two days, I tried to drag my family down there. For some reason, I had added them to my cure. "Walk by the ocean, in the elements, with your family."
At each attempt to get down there, something stopped us. Really stopped us, not just internal lack of will. I kept forcing it, over and over. "Ocean, elements, family. Oceans, elements, family" And the Universe said, "Nope," over and over (in dramatic ways that are too long to post).
So, after our second aborted trip (filled with more funk and a ridiculous quest for an electric car charging station in Marina, CA that included my first two Uber rides), I dropped them home and headed here. My personal stretch of ocean (that I share with thousands): Mitchell's cove. Where I have been known to sing with whales and chant to the sea after heart-breaking election results.
I'm here. Now. Pecking away at my iPhone screen. It's rainy and windy and getting dark. Darker as I type. And it is time to leave this typing and start walking. I need to continue feeling my funk and let the elements and the sea feed my spirit, let them start to communicate with my walled off emotional self. To listen to the wisdom of this funk. To build my first bridge of the new year.
But this is my bridge. Not my family's. The Universe was right. There will be other bridges for us to build together, bridges to connect where the distance is between us. But for now, my first bridge building of the new year is between me and me. And building this bridge will make the others so much easier when it is their time to be built.