All is peaceful at my house after last week’s COVID scare. My youngest daughter—the one I birthed who still lives at home—was exposed June 19 and began exhibiting some strange symptoms by the 21st. She tested negative, as did her father and I, yet symptoms have persisted on and off since then.
Even if she does have COVID, she has not been terribly sick, yet fear in its many forms got the best of me last week. It first showed up as anger because I made a judgement that the people who exposed her acted carelessly. I was also angry that a trip to Montana to visit our other children had to be cancelled, and that we have to isolate for at least two weeks.
Fear then arrived in the form of speculation. What if my daughter’s symptoms get worse? What if her father and I catch the illness and our older bodies don’t handle it as well? What if all three of us are sick at the same time and no one is well enough to take care of the others?
Then my fear energy hooked into my daughter’s fear energy, and we both were a hot mess of worry. As all of this was going on, I was using all of my tools for staying centered—meditation, prayer, visualization, Qoya, yoga, nature, energy healing and breathwork. They helped, but I couldn’t entirely prevent anxious energy from creeping in. So, I started feeling bad because I’m “supposed” to know how to ground myself. Self-criticism…fear in another form…aaargh!
Finally, I realized I was forgetting something. I was forgetting that I can choose freedom.
It came to me Sunday as I was running my horse up a trail in the forest. Because my horse is gaited, when he runs, it is so smooth that I feel like I’m flying through the air on Pegasus. Ironically, the reason he was dashing up the hill is because he is afraid when he is not with his stablemates. And I usually try to hold him back a little. But this time, I let him fly. I chose to feel free.
Freedom is always a choice, and luckily it is a choice we can make over an over again. Things happen that test us. We become uprooted. We think we are powerless. We forget to be free. But we can remember again, even if we’ve done this thousands of times.
As we celebrate Independence Day in the U.S., perhaps we should remind ourselves that each thought we have provides an opportunity for freedom. There will always be circumstances that are beyond our control. In fact, pretty much all circumstances are beyond our control if you really think about it. We can get mired in our fears, but we can also choose to get up out of the muck and take a ride on the horse with powerful wings.
The Covid vaccination has granted me some freedom, so I’m in Texas this week. On Easter Sunday morning, I found myself in one of my favorite “churches”–the woods of Hamilton Green Belt, near Austin. With her usual abundant grace, Nature preached the perfect sermon for me. The green leaves just beginning to peek out of trees that endured a paralyzing February storm showed me what rebirth looks like. So much died in that storm—plants, animals and people. The forest shows us how to be resilient, how even though separation can be painful, the gift of letting go is growth. I