Flashes of insight

Long before daybreak, I was wide awake. Not worried about this, just letting thoughts pass through me without engaging, letting them appear on the screen of me and tell me what they wanted to make known. Fleetingly, I was thinking about the old sofa that gets collected today, replaced with a lovely new one but, still, a moment of poignancy passed through – I’ve had that sofa for, what, twenty years…could it be? Yes, I think, exactly twenty years, my first house, green (though its been reinvented as muted yellow for about the last thirteen). The last piece of stock furniture from my old life, a life I don’t relate to any more; the biggest one to replace was my bed, a few years ago now, and then the other sofa earlier this year; everything else is reasonably new. How furniture like this takes on the imprint of our lives, all those things that happened sitting or lying on it, being the silent witness to so many life-altering scenes. Yet I felt a wave of sadness or almost an apology come up in me; smilingly suppressed an anthropomorphic response as I considered how loyal it has been to me, wondered where was I sending it, worried just a little. It stopped being comfortable several years ago; sank in the middle, didn’t feel like it supported me adequately, felt limiting, too short for my legs when I lay out, didn’t work for either relaxation or work really but I kept it anyway. The new one fits me where I am now, was custom built to suit my exact preferences, meets me the way I live these days…and holds no memories.

Many more thoughts passed though, a long procession of them, a flash of new understanding about several things. Then, why did this come up into my mind’s eye…my mother’s scarf, her green paisley umbrella, her apron with the hippo-pattern…why did I keep those things after she died, why were those my grab and run keepsakes when we cleared her house. The scarf, yes, smelled like her, the apron…memories of her in the kitchen, baking (as ever) but the umbrella? Time to do some more clearing; again, its been twenty years. With a tangible feeling of muscles relaxing another degree, I realised that if I could let those things go, I could go into all the deep corners, could go deeper than this year’s already considerable process of ‘thinning out’ my stuff, clearing under the bed, in the attic, the garage, those cupboards; we’ve achieved so much in the way of decluttering this year but there’s more yet, deeper places still to show the daylight. Its been a big year for all that – and the relief, such relief, of letting go of whatever no longer works, embellishes or serves…you can feel it in all your cells!

More flashes of insight, of thoughts passing through, ‘a-ha’ moments, seemingly disconnected things joining up in patterns (this is just the very tip of that iceburg…); it was one of those high energy nights when new understanding flashes through at lightning speed, like a morse-code of channelled information from the ether. Literal flashing seemed to be going on behind my eyelids, as often happens when the energy is highly charged, a solar flare ‘coming in’. Eventually…like a person standing with outstretched arms holding so many gifts, there was too much to hold onto…I was letting some of these treasures slip and so the usual urge came in…to get up, get dressed and start writing but no STOP…see what happens… just be with it, allow, watch the show, let more insight come through. So I did.

Then I realised, amidst all these insights, that this is what we do; we gather all this information every moment we are alive…thoughts, feelings, theories, breakthroughs, reactions, dots-joined in new incredible ways, and then we wonder “where do I put it all, how do I carry it, how do I know it will still be there for me when I most need it” and so we attach it to things, we anchor it to objects, we store it anywhere it will fit. No less than we attach it to things, to objects, to places, to music do we attach it to ourselves; we store it in our cells until they rattle and creak with so much stored memory, with every thought, feeling, insight and moment we ever had. Then, in places where those memories are particularly old, stagnant, dense and least relevant to our ‘now’, we bury them even deeper to have them out of our sight, until they become restriction, pain, inflammation, parts of us that don’t work as they should. Long after it serves us to keep them, we carry them…just in case they might be useful to us…one day.

Lately – which is why it has helped me so much, became my greatest aid as I reached storage-saturation point – my new way has been to store what I might otherwise forget in words, in writing that is sometimes so obscure that nobody reads it; I know that, but I write it anyway because its for me, my filing system. Yet its still storage, it can still feel like there is too much old stuff left hanging around long after you placed it there or stopped relating to it; worse, even, because it becomes a giant database ‘out there’ in the world; so that writing a blog can become like renting an industrial storage unit after your house has filled up to the roof.

quartz bannerSomething I happened to read just yesterday now lit up in my mind like a crystalline glow in a dark room – it said when your mind is teeming, use crystals as your data bank, like a computer hard drive; simply put the information in there and ask that it hold it all until you need it. What, really? Yet the truth of this rang out as clear as a bell; crystals are made for such as this in a way that flesh struggles to replicate without sacrificing its soft malleability, its ability to move and be responsive to change, to be spontaneous, playful, creative and in flow. Strive to hold onto too much and we become burdened, stuck in our ways.

Synchronistically, I have just added some lovely new crystals to my bedside table; a couple of significant ones, in particular, have become potent new friends, I can feel them distinctly through the dark and, am I imagining it or, do I even sense them flashing at me too? So, flipping over on my side, I consciously set the intention and sent my overloaded mind full of interconnecting thoughts, epiphanies, associations and new understanding to the huge new crystal beside me. Whatever your initial reaction, suspend any disbelief and imagine this; imagine being able to let go of everything that ever cluttered your entire energy-field and still know – just deeply know – that it will still be there for you exactly when you need it, that you can never lose it and can call it on demand. Imagine never having to hold onto it all, to hoard, to carry the perceived weight of everything that ever happened to you, or to remind yourself so that you don’t make the same mistakes again, or to share it or make sense of it in a format you can immediately pass on as some sort of duty of care to others, or to lug it all around with you wherever you go. Almost immediately, my mind was quieted and a new, deeper, comfort came over me, like settling into an alternate piece of furniture that was infinitely better moulded to my current shape and where I am, right here and right now. I smiled through all my cells and settled into the deep relaxation of it.

About Helen White

Helen White is a professional artist and published writer with two primary blogs to her name. Her themes pivot around health and wellbeing, expanded consciousness and ways of noticing how life is a constant dance between the deeply subjective and the collective-universal, all of which she explores with a daily hunger to get to know herself better. Her blog Living Whole shines a light on living with high sensitivity, dealing with trauma and healing from chronic health issues. Spinning the Light is an extremely broad-based platform where she elucidates the everyday alchemy of relentless self-exploration. A lifetime of "feeling like an outsider" slowly emerged as neurodivergence (being a Highly Sensitive Person with ADHD, synaesthesia, sensory processing challenges and other defecits overlapping with giftedness). All of these topics are covered in her blogs, written from two distinct vantage points so, if you have enjoyed one of them, you may wish to explore the other for a different, yet entirely complimentary, perspective.
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