I’ve reunited with my sons, Solomon and Salvador! I cannot tell you how renewed I feel by being seeing them after a too-long absence and being able to see them more frequently. It had been 6 months of living separated from them by a travel distance of 6+ hours by car and it ate away at me.
I’m still living in my car except that now I am on the Oregon Coast and I’m only an hour’s drive from them.
I left Redding on the Friday night of November 18th at 11pm. I intended on leaving Redding on that morning, the 18th, after deciding that the impending snowstorm, due to arrive on Saturday the 19th, would have delayed my departure by several more days and I did not want to wait any longer.
So why did I wait until 11pm? Well, I had forgotten and left my black leather work-bag, which holds my laptop, appointment book, and 2 portable backup hard drives, at work on Thursday night which I went back to retrieve on Friday morning. When I did so I discovered that my bag had in fact been stolen at work!
You’ve got to be fucking kidding me! (Yes, I curse like a sailor and if you’re offended then please get the fuck off this blog! Just take your sorry, judgmental, self-righteous ass and get the fuck out! And have a beautiful life while you’re at it!)
That set me back in several ways – it delayed my departure because there was no way I was going to leave without it (all my work, photos of my children, and my writings are on that laptop!); it caused me miss a couple of appointments with business owners (ouch!) that were entered in my appointment book; and it brought me to a point of extreme distress, mentally and emotionally.
I will write about it in my next post because what I went through, and more importantly, how I got through it and the discovery about myself and perseverance was nothing short of transformational.
Long story-short is I finally did get my laptop back later that evening (of the 18th) but the delay had carried an ominous possibility of having to either wait out the winter storm, with another storm following close behind, or leave that night and risk having to drive over 3 mountain passes while contending with a snow storm in my 2004 Dodge Stratus – not exactly the car you want to be driving through snow storms.
Anyway, I left Redding at 11pm….and would almost regret doing so as I did encounter severe snow and ice at Mt Shasta (which sits atop the first mountain pass) and near disaster. My guts were knotted up with a sick feeling of fear, doom, and a tenuous insistence to continue forward through the storm which was a freezing rainstorm then a total whiteout snowstorm the closer I got to Mt. Shasta. I could not drive above 25 mph due to ice on the road and there were several cars that slid off the road because the drivers did not handle the ice well. I could not continue and had to pull into Mt Shasta where I sought information on the storm’s severity along I-5 heading north. Snow was building quickly and I could not get a clear indication on what road conditions were like north of Mt. Shasta…..so I got back on the road to attempt to continue but finally had to pull into Weed where I spent the night at the Pilot truck stop.
What’s become a point of fascination for me on my arduous journey to reunion with my sons and personal redemption is my recently developed, or more accurately sharpened, celestial view of my entire life and journey. Another way of saying it is I’ve become increasingly aware of the mythos of my soul’s journey whenever I shift my perspective and raise it above the fray of circumstances, chaos and the ensuing emotions that bog down my seeing, blinding me to the over-arching truth that I am more than what I think, know, feel, experience, and believe. And certainly, I am more than what others think of me whether ‘good’ or ‘bad’.
I see my personal myth as similar to Jacob’s journey in the book of Genesis. I, like Jacob, always sought the easy path, the slick shortcut to my desires. I, like Jacob, stole, lied, cheated and manipulated my way to a lazy man’s treasure – the self-satisfaction of having gotten over. But still, something deeper within me would not let me be at peace with my path, and I developed blind spots in my character where I could not see the reasons, causes, and patterns that factored into my failures and faults. I’d have to lose, or seem to lose, everything I cherished before I could awaken and see the truth of my doings and choices. I, like Jacob, fought and wrestled with Life even though I was beaten down into the dust, stripped of my bullshit and blindness, with nothing within myself by which I could gain some leverage and negotiating power with Life.
I would have to dig deepest into the darkest caverns of my soul where I finally discovered grace, forgiveness, and redemption. Stripped of all strength and pride, stripped bare and naked of all pretense, I would beg for death…..and for the blessing of life.
Again, I will go into detail about that in my next post because it will benefit YOU when you are faced with adversity, confronted by your past, haunted by memories, and tormented by your demons. All of which, by the way, we create choice by choice, misstep by misstep.
Anyway, I finally arrived at the home of my sons and reunited with Solomon and Salvador, at about 6pm on Saturday the 19th (19 hrs after leaving Redding), I was met by their ecstatic joy the moment I knocked on the door. They screamed ‘Dada! Dada!’ when I knocked and when that door opened I dropped to my knees and we joined in hugs and kisses and hugs and kisses. My heart felt bigger than the world.
I spent that weekend with them and walked Solomon, along with Salvador, to school on Monday morning (he’s in kindergarten). On the way to school, we found a worm on the street and we picked it up and Solomon placed it in the grass so that it could enjoy its life and native environment. An act of restoration mirroring my experience.
I spent the next couple days learning my way about in nearby towns, prospecting for business, printing marketing materials at the public library, making prospecting calls at the library, and so on. I reserve a study room for hours and that becomes my little office where I can make calls and get work done. Public libraries are great resources in numerous ways and I feel blessed to be able to find ways to get work done. It’s not exactly ideal but considering my current circumstances it’s a tremendous blessing.
I returned to see my sons on the day before Genocide Day, aka Thanksgiving, which is a fucking joke by the way. Filthy european dogs spread their poisonous presence and their stench of death and disease throughout this land so sacred to millions of Indigenous Humans who were mercilessly slaughtered by these filthy pigs. The legacy of europe is death, destruction, disease, and decay and I say fuck europe….because I love Humanity (if you can’t feel that or deal with that then I invite you to engage me or just get the fuck out of this blog….and if you believe I’m some agent of discord by writing this I invite you to get your head out of your ass! And enjoy the fresh air of truth!).
Anyway, I digress….
As I do not observe Genocide Day (shit, let’s call it by its rightful name….or else let’s make lovely, festive, family-centered holidays to celebrate the Holocaust, the slaughter of 20 million Russians under Stalin, the historical and economic lynching of Blacks and other non-white peoples, and we can even throw in some sex-trade horrors too!) I did nothing special with my sons on that day except just be with them…..until I was told to leave later that evening by the mistress of the house. She wanted to attend a Genocide Day gathering at a friend’s house to which I was not invited (which I would not have attended anyway).
So I left, surprised and dismayed to be quite honest, in the midst of a torrential rainstorm with heavy winds. It was night and I knew that driving thru that storm would be too risky so I slept in my car in a nearby parking lot….I was not the only one as there were a couple other cars that spent the night there, too, either because of the storm or because they, like me, had nowhere to go.
As I lay back in my seat in the Hotel Stratus I went through all kinds of emotional swings from anger to blaming others to self-pity to grief….and then to resolve.
After allowing myself to feel every quantum ounce of rage, grief and regret, after wringing tears from my eyes and curses from my breath…..then came the silence.
I recognized this silence from having arrived at it under similar circumstances before. When my bag was stolen in Redding, for example; or when I worked as a farmhand on Mr. Duff’s ranch in Big Hill, Kentucky when I lived off-grid. Then, it took 2 weeks to arrive at the silence, having moved straight from the South Bronx to the middle of nowhere in Kentucky. For 2 weeks, as I labored under the summer heat, my head-space filled with constant noise, voices, music, memories, and more noise, I felt tormented as I sought peace and quiet within. At the time, my dumb-ass thought it was demons messing with my mind so brainwashed was I by the belief system I chose to adopt as my own….the kind of belief system that places fault, blame, and responsibility on a devil while giving away all power and authority to a god. Man, crazy!
Then, one day, as I was cleaning Mr. Duff’s fence-row with a roaring chainsaw in my hand to cut down the small trees that grew entangled into the fence, I took a break to enjoy a bit of shade from the burning sun. When I turned off the chainsaw I heard only silence….and birds…..and the breeze. The noise in my head ceased. I remember looking around at the mountains that wrapped around the ranch, at the clear sky overhead, at the ground underneath my feet. I looked around as if trying to find where the noise in my head had gone. The green fields appeared greener, the sky bluer, and the mountains came into sharper focus. After 2 weeks of noise and torment, silence. I smiled, feeling more present and more alive. I prayed and gave thanks to Creator. Then I went back to work.
This time, and nowadays, it takes mere minutes to arrive at the silence. How many minutes? I don’t know…..5, 10, 20, 30? The perceived gap between my mental space and infinite spaces of possibility is closing and the expression of One is emerging like the soft breaking of dawn on the vernal equinox. This is what I believe.
In this instance, while in my car on the Oregon Coast, on this night when many gather in festive spirits, I fell into silence after the internal emotional storm passed. And in that silence a clear memory emerged. It was a memory of an event in 6th grade. Then another memory from 7th grade. Then memories from childhood of being bullied and shit on by older boys on my block in the South Bronx. And in these memories I recalled my responses to adversity and pressure and the beginnings of lifelong character traits….and possibilities!
Again, I will go into great detail in my next post about these 2 experiences – being confronted by the fruits of my doings as a result of adversity and crisis then rising from the grave of death via the silence of mind, the shift in seeing, and then showing up anew.
I must share it BECAUSE YOU WILL BE BLESSED, INSPIRED, AND STRENGTHENED BY MY MYTH TO DISCOVER AND CELEBRATE YOUR OWN.
When the silence arrives that’s when I’m able to shift my seeing and my feeling, and questions emerge that only occur to me to ask when the silence settles into my soul. Then, my resolve emerges from the shadowy abyss of despondence and rises to the sun-kissed, granite peaks of determination.
Shit, I ain’t gonna let anyone shit on me like I’m trash! And truthfully, this is the first, last, and only time that I will allow this to happen to me or get to me because I’m on a mission for my Self and my Solomon and Salvador. I will not be beholden to a past that no longer exists by someone who wants to define my by what they say or think I am. I am not defined by the myopic view of another who chooses to see me as something ‘dark’ and ‘scary’ when in reality they are projecting their own internal condition. Shit, I know I get angry and lose my temper when I am frustrated with dealing with someone else’s bullshit, hypocrisy, and stupidity (as I see it). I am intolerant of pettiness. And I am working on myself, and moreover, LIFE is working on me! I reflect on all of it and appreciate their judgments and belittling as I am purified and strengthened by my willingness to reflect and consider their words in spite of how or why the message is delivered.
So I sat back up in my seat and wrote a declaration. I felt power surge through me. I felt my strength and determination return after a momentary lapse. And I’m so glad that I do not hide from my pain but have always been willing to sit with it, lie in it, and allow myself to FEEL it.
In truth, the adversity I’m facing I fully accept as the out-picturing of my mind that was molded by and filled with haunting memories and the false beliefs about myself resulting from how I interpreted and internalized certain painful experiences.
And the truth is that we all need to be confronted and TO RECOGNIZE WE ARE BEING CONFRONTED BY OUR SHIT…..BECAUSE THAT’S OUR INVITATION TO SHINE!
To shine like Solomon and Salvador who are my teachers and leaders as much, if not more, than they are my sons. They are GODS. And I am blessed to be back with them.