Renewal: A Failure?

A teacher friend of mine wrote me recently.  The message was short. She said:  “Dear Aunty Em, I hate school.  I am taking Toto and running away from home.”

My friend has a wildly good sense of humor, and I knew that she was hurting. We talked for a while, and her honesty about how she was feeling at the time gave me some real insight into the way life works for me (and I suspect others).  At first glance, I don’t like to admit when things are going wrong.  Having been trained in the “stiff upper lip school”, to admit that things are going badly just seems disloyal, unmanly, unpatriotic, and sinful.  (Yes, there’s just a truckload to  unpack there–later). Those feelings amount to denial about what is real and true right now, and as long as I am willing to deny what is real and true about right now, whatever it is, there is no movement–in any direction.

The metaphoric lines that my friend took from the Wizard of Oz suddenly lit up for me.  If Dorothy had not become so unhappy with her present conditions, if she had not taken Toto and run away, she would never made her journey to Oz, and there would never have been a “full colored”return home with new insights about what “home” means.

What is going on in your reality, today?  Whatever it is, good, bad or otherwise, take a moment and acknowledge it.  Write it down.  Say it out loud.  And then breathe.  Whatever it is, it simply is.  You have to see it and allow it before the trip to Oz begins, before the full-colored return can happen.  When I can do that, something inside of me shifts. The journey starts.  Before renewal, the truth about what is true, today.

Bob Patrick

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