Rose gave me a green card (years ago!) with a quote from Thomas Merton; writer, monk, teacher, ponderer.
On the bottom of the card there's a tiny sticker with Mary holding baby Jesus and I'm guessing it's Joseph standing behind her, looking over her shoulder. Even with my glasses, it's blurry. I keep it on the fridge. Every so often I stop and read it. It begins:
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I nod, I have no idea where I am going! while I put the kettle on for another cup of tea.
I'm fixated on knowing where I'm going which completely contradicts yesterday's post, I can rest in life as it is. All fine and good, restful too, but I'm way too busy ferreting-out the exact location of my going-ness to rest.
But the more I ferret, the worse I feel.
This no idea where I'm going knot has been tied very tightly to my work life for a couple of years now. After leaving a teaching career eleven years ago, I joyfully embarked on a second round of motherhood along with writing, workshop leading, yoga teaching, artist-in-residence freelance-y work while Claire grew.
But all the panic over pensions and the economy, caring for an aging Dad, worry about money has grown a fear worm that's been eating my joy and trust in huge gulps.
I've convinced myself that people who have full-time work (with an actual job title) know exactly where they're going and feel really good about it. That if I want to know where I'm going and feel really good, I should do what they're doing.
This artist's life feels too hard. I need a real job.
real job = steady pay, pension, health insurance
Can I send you my resume?
Brother Merton goes on to write Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I'm actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you...
More stuff about desire and pleasing, then,
And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it.
Is he still talking about knowing nothing?
Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost...
I'm thinking Thomas is my long-lost twin...
Some days I seem to be lost. Others I feel very found. My quandary, as I write this, is that I make one out to be the good guy, and the other one, not so good.
It's a mystery, the whole God thing and who exactly you is and why should anyone trust God, The Universe, Spirit,*Ethel, themselves.
Without trust, I'm screwed.
Just for today, I will trust that the road I'm on may be the one less traveled, often foggy, crooked and unclear.
But I'm on a road,
or a wooded path with sunlight,
even if I don't know I am...
*read: Call It What You Will 3/29/10