Stuck On Fumble

I want to write something different. Lately I feel like I come to Athena Graceland, whining about all that life is, and all that life isn’t. And yes, I believe that life is what I make it. But these days, I feel like a skipping record caught on fumble fuck. I see people on Facebook raving about how awesome life is… and I aggressively suck in on myself, because I feel like I should be saying stuff like that too, given how essentially wise and radiant and caring I am.

I am in darkness. Caught in a hazy dream. Groping desperate and determined at self-imposed walls, in hopes of stumbling upon a massive, stunning, golden door, with an ornate, glowing knob that throbs in anticipation of being turned by my large, elegant hand. It is a dangerous game- looking into a future strictly informed by an out-grown husk of an imagined past. Why am I doing that? Because although it is painfully binding to the vast magnificence fighting to be born through me, it is comfortable like “holy” sweats.

I’m trying to use the tools I learned in spiritual counseling… going inside, getting quiet, lifting myself into a superconscious state. I hate the word “try”. And I prefer not to use the word “hate”. Ugh. See, I keep picking fights with myself, which is totally counter-productive to where I want to go. But the part of me invested in staying stuck, freakin LOVES IT! Anyway, it “seems” like “trying” when I go within, because it’s like visiting a foreign country where I don’t speak the language. Or maybe even another planet, where can’t breathe the air because it’s way too refined for prehistoric beasts such as Athena Grace.

I’ve taken to talking to Yogananda’s photograph in the mornings before I start my yoga and meditation. I’m always amazed at how willing he is to talk with me. Recently, he told me to have compassion for myself. LOADS of it. Like more than even GOD is capable of. And I thought cheerfully to myself, “Wow, I can do that!”. But now, here I am on the playing field, and mustering that kind of compassion is harder than it seemed at first glance. Because I want to be THE BEST. But then the gap between this fuzzy, distorted image of “THE BEST”, and the reality of where I perceive myself to be is comparable to the Grand Canyon. Though I’ve never been there, I imagine it is exponentially immense. But it is also gorgeous. Maybe the massive gap between who I am and who I think I should be is actually one of the seven wonders of the world! Maybe it is a tourist attraction that brings bazillions of humble, everyday people to their knees in awe, because the views are so stunning!

I have to bring lightness to this unsavory place I am imagining myself to be in… or else I will soon collapse in the drought of my own self-imposed forgetfulness. This morning, I got in the shower and began to sob and even though I was afraid of upsetting the other residents of Villa Luce (my Ma’s house), I had to go with it, because all this energy welling up in me sought liberation through expression.

Wait, before I go any further, I have to tell you that yesterday I officially became a disciple of Yogananda. I was sure in my heart that this was the right thing to do… but today I am feeling anxious, because now I feel this perpetual self-judgement hanging over my head, like I “SHOULDN’T” be having so many feelings. Like Yoganada doesn’t approve. (Hmmm, interesting. My mom actually DID used to say those very words to me when I was a kid… when she didn’t like the way I was behaving. She’d say in a stern, sing-song voice, “Dawn… Yogananda wouldn’t approve…” Scarry.) But yeah, I feel like he’s standing over my shoulder, watching EVERYTHING I do, and judging me for being too emotional, too free-spirited, too self-indulgent. Shit. I’m gonna hafta evolve into a healthier relationship with my guru… because this is NOT sustainable.

Ahem… so to the projected distaste of my beloved guru, I’m freshly showered and still intermittently spilling with teary sorrow, as I gather my belongings and prepare to head out of the house to find a place to write, when the harp begins to strum, and I realize I am getting a phone call. Who could it be, I wonder… I look and my iPhone screen says “Dad”. Not the first person I’d think to call while my heart is all broken in like five thousand pieces… but I answer it, because it’s been too long, and because God doesn’t make mistakes.

“Hello?” I manage, meekly, between sorrowful peels. “Athena?” he says, probably because I don’t sound like myself. “Yeah,” I reply. “Are you crying?” he asks, which sends me into another upsurge of tearful crooning. I’m laughing to myself as I reflect on the unfolding of our conversation from there; Me, doing my best to speak through waves of unbridled sorrow, and him responding with an all-too-familiar strain of masculine reason, “I can’t understand you when you’re crying like that.”

I just want him to be like, “Oh sweetheart… you are so loved…I’m here with you…” and I’m wondering inside why on earth I chose to answer his call… and simultaneously trying not to take myself or him too seriously. Cuz we’re both just actors in a play called “The Moment”, and I’m honestly not sure if it’s supposed to be a comedy or a tragedy…Meanwhile, he’s walking his five month old yellow lab puppy and he keeps diverting from our conversation to discipline “Koby”, and talk to all the people he’s encountering. Jesus almighty. But I decide to let it all just BE…

And eventually, he comes around, and like a fresh-water spring pouring from the side of a high and glorious mountain, he starts spouting totally kind and wise words to me. Like he’s already proud of me… for being who I am, and being willing to plunge into the Unknown… and that I could simply be practicing my yoga and meditation in a park in Oakland, and people would be drawn to my light… and I must be willing to flaunt what I’ve got so that people know what I have to offer. I’ve learned to have exceedingly low expectations of my dad. But since I let go of the hope of “getting anything from him”, he often surprises me with his love and insight. What I was left with, is a gentle invitation to remember who I am, and what I have to give. And to go for the “Big Prize”, as he refers to whatever “THAT” dream may be for me… And once again, I found myself stunned and surprised by the clarity with which my dad sees me. Considering that I haven’t visited him since last october, and it really didn’t go so well, and we live in universes neither parallel, nor perpendicular… but distant, like stars twinkling from opposite ends of a roomy galaxy.

I was walking to the Crystal Hermitage as we talked. Just as I was approaching it, my dad says, “Well, I’m just about done with my walk, so I gotta get goin…” I smile inwardly at the synchronous perfection. “Yeah, me too,” I affirm. And we lovingly wrap up our call. I am marveling at the intelligence and perfection of God, as I notice that my tears have dried and my heart feels waaay lighter.

Oh yeah, and he also told me that the “Big Prize” is behind door number three. So I shall keep groping about in this sanctified darkness that could only be God’s closet. And I pray that by pure Grace, my hand will eventually encounter that illustrious, throbbing knob.


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