A photo essay of MIRROR in the Third Street Canvas. The poem is displayed in the window of the LABYRINTH PRESS CAFE. I enjoyed a wonderful vegetarian meal with family members Fred, Rabi, Helen (who also played photographer), Dave, Cynthia, and Rebecca.
Facing myself IS the HARDEST lesson. I REALLY REALLY don’t wanna go there. BUT it’s the only way to wake up. And we (you, me, etc etc) REALLY REALLY do wanna wake up, which leaves us no choice. WE gotta do it. We gotta go there ~ into that scary horrible ugly part of ourselves. The part of me that my sweet EGO protects so coyly. After all, I IDENTIFY myself as NOT that. I am soooo different from OTHER people who do that. Yeah, right.
Just returned from hanging out with all 8 of my sibs, their “spice” as well as a handful of nieces and nephews. Our Mom died just before Valentine’s Day and we rented a big beach house. All of us. TOGETHER. In one house. Imagine. The noise of everyone talking was a lesson in patience itself. Now I really love these folks, BUT an hour or a couple of hours is ENOUGH. After several days covert strains in the relationships begin to manifest and growl….grrrrr. I begin to wish I had more patience, more humility, more generosity of spirit, more confidence, and above all, more kindness.
The hardest part of being with these folks I grew up with is that they really do know me. As much as I want to think that I’m somehow different and alienated from them, as much as I try to marginalize myself, in my core, I know that the parts of them that I don’t like or appreciate, their character flaws, their spiritual weaknesses, are, to some degree, also mine. Furthermore, their complaints or, in the case of my family, their jokes about my flaws are probably right on. There is no sense even to try to counter their accusations.
That’s the problem with being a close family. We know one another perhaps more than we’d like to admit. When I look at one of them, it’s as if I am looking in a mirror. They reflect back to me who I am. Even if I don’t want to see that particular part of myself. Of course, it works the other way as well. Sometimes I can see such beauty and purity of spirit in one of my sibs that I immediately jump to claim as being a part of THAT family.
To continue to grow however,I need to push through the soft spots of ease and learn to soften the harder areas of dis-ease and un-comfort.