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  • Annelisa MacBean

Sobriety, Equanimity, Serenity

As I have written about many times in this blog series, there is a certain kind of identity death that occurs as part of the healing process . . . as part of coming more fully into life. As I deepen into ever greater awareness of what I am and what I am becoming, there is always something, sometimes many things, that do not survive the illumination, the vision. While it is tempting to want to wrench myself away from the unstable sense that I am losing my foothold in reality, losing my balance on the foundation of the known and familiar, there is a thread of wisdom woven within the process of reorganization itself, which cannot be known or brought into the next phase if I abandon or pull away from the deterioration or disorganization prematurely. The dissolution itself is an initiation. It offers a kind of granular recognition and understanding that can be easily overlooked if I scramble to get to the fixed or healed place too quickly. An old part of myself that has accompanied me for so long, is no longer supportive, useful or necessary on the journey. I must endure the crumbling of an old dream – the loss of an idea about my life and the way I imagined it might unfold.

This prior companion, this inner part might manifest as another person but is more often and more likely, a member of my inner constellation of psychic parts - various images, a feeling, beliefs and ideas, lenses through which I’ve been seeing myself and others that no longer serve. It might be a fragmented part . . . an aspect or facet of my being that was split off, compartmentalized or isolated that will either be absorbed into the newly emerging identity, and integrated, or it has come to the end of its life. In order to truly transform in this way, I have to slow down. I must discipline myself to literally lay on the ground, to lay in warm sand, to intentionally support my body to feel the discomfort of a deep, weirdly primal metamorphosis. I need the support of the earth and the warmth of the sun, but often tend to dismiss the inner call to such primitive behavior. My body has the knowing wisdom that the urgency to enter into the next phase must be met but not indulged to allow the passing, the transition, the movement of a death, to complete.


Mourning and celebration are part and parcel of the reassembling of my inner world. There is inevitable loss inherent in my passionate reach for a sense of home and wholeness. As I heal and awaken I am learning to attend to the comings AND the goings as a holographic event, to attune to the now in which both are occurring, simultaneously. Sobriety . . . Tending to the pieces of soul, to shards of the heart, and the fragments of the psyche that are being dissolved, to honor the role they have played, for standing by me for so long, and providing refuge during difficult and transitional times. To grieve the loss of their companionship and allow them to continue into whatever realm is next for them, permission to travel and experience new things. So important not to skip over this part as the shiny and new, the hopeful and promising emerges!


Equanimity . . . To stand in awe at this process, despite the profound pain and grief, to care for all of it, allowing the mystery to reveal itself in deeper and deeper ways. To know and live in the experience that healing and awakening is messy, glorious, and full-spectrum… and is not only an act of creation, but one of destruction as well.


Serenity . . . when sobriety and equanimity hold hands.



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