Here in Southern California we are a bit like the red-haired stepchild when it comes to the changing of the seasons. Scrappy north-easterners sneer at our lack of seasons (while secretly envying them), while hearty mid-westerners laugh at our mentioning that, "Fall is here, or Spring has sprung," just because we don't have 50 degree temperature swings during these transitional days. These people from places of ice and cold just think we are delusional. Well, tell that to my Wisteria, Jasmine and Coral Tree this week. It may look subtle here, but there is springing, spranging and sprunging all over the place.
Last Saturday March 21st was the Spring Equinox, which in my world meant that it was exactly nine months since my father, George Carlin's death. A period of time similar to a full, human gestation has occurred, and yes, I am being born, again. And just like childbirth, it is a messy and painful experience.
This week I really would love to connect to the lavender and carmine colors bursting, and Robins and Swallows flirting all around me, but instead I find myself focusing on my breath and just trying to make it through the next five minutes (do they have Lamaze classes for personal re-birthing?). I am in the stage of mourning where I get to pull out all my perspectives and feelings around my relationship with my father and re-examining them and decide which ones to keep and which ones to release. Like the equinox that holds the light and the dark in equal measure, not only am I feeling the deep love, respect and adoration I have for my father, but I am also letting myself feel the pain, disappointment and rage toward him that I have kept locked in the basement of myself for over 40 years. The father/daughter relationship is certainly a complex one, and I am knee deep in it this week. Once again, I am humbled by this mourning process, and truly get that I do not get to be in charge of it all. I really would love to write to you all that I am blooming and blossoming and buzzing around like a Honey Bee, and that the warmer days and lighter evenings have put a spring in my step, but alas, not quite yet.
Besides rummaging in the basement of myself, I think that these "birthing pains" are also occurring because I am finally looking at the reality of being an orphan. I am coming to terms with the fact that if I am to truly become anew, it is only I who can do the birthing now. There is no mom or dad to lean on, to live up to or to disappoint. They created me 46 years ago, and now it is my turn to create my self. But I feel like I want to scream, "But, I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' no Self!" Yes, I have had many transitions, discoveries, new beginnings in my 45 years on the planet, but this level of new beginning, well it's just all so fucking brand new. And yet, those blooms, those birds, they know what to do, year after year, season after season. Maybe I can't revel in the spring yet, but I can certainly watch the wisdom.
So here is what I promise: I will take it slow, wait until this baby (Me!) is at full term and truly ready to come out. I will push when needed, back off when appropriate, keep breathing, and know that when this labor of loving myself is through, there will be a miracle of life handed to me, and I will name her Kelly Marie Carlin-McCall.
You know, now that I think about it, it kind of feels like the whole world is on the edge of birthing something new. We are all in the thrall of a huge spring cleaning - out with the old paradigm and in with the new! And I know that we can all get through it if we all breathe together, and yes even take some time to smell that Jasmine and flirt with those Robins. I will try if you will. Deal?