A Thunder Hidden On The Inside

Don’t surrender your loneliness so quickly. Let it cut you more deep. Let it ferment and season you as few humans and even divine ingredients can. Something missing in my heart tonight has made my eyes so soft, my voice so tender, my need for God absolutely clear." ~ Hafiz 


We woke up today to a radiant and very distinct layer of snow on the ground. And more in the sky, twirling like a white dress coming undone by the threads.

And bare bones cold, an ache in your chest kind of cold. The wood stove had gone out in the night, so after riling myself out bed and a mountain of blankets, I realized it was still so very winter. I almost cried a little, because I'm so ready, you know? I'm so over it. 

Just a couple weeks ago, maybe even less we were shedding layers. The sun was hot white love. The daffodils were yellow and laughing.  I had already started packing up our winter things. A week ago last Sunday I was at the park with Evie and she literally took off all her clothes, just for the sheer joy, to stop and play in the the sand. (Play = roll around like a puppy in it, and then refuse to get dressed again.)  I couldn't help but just let her go with it for awhile though.  If there is any delight in this world, it's watching your toddler take pleasure in herself, in her body, in her discovery of the Earth.  

And I felt it too, that spark, that beauty, that undeniable opening was upon us.  I felt like I was letting something out, like I was sailing through to the other side, with clarity.  I was so very sure that Spring was arriving, that this winter with all it's chill, and all it's undoing us (and also making us) was about to be over. We were through the thick of it. Hurrah!


But then starting some time last week, the winter seemed to lurch back in. The wind was powerful, and cold, and not easy to get out from.  Like a old lover who hadn't yet parted ways with us, like a last act, it returned with something savage to show us.  It had an edge. The ache was back, fresh from the grind, fully unresolved, or at least it felt that way.  I knew what it was, even though I didn't want to know it, if that makes sense.  It was the way I feel when I'm really going through a chunk of my soul self, when there's something churning inside. 

Even before the snow, I could feel a weight, a heavy in me. I came home earlier this week, and said to Ben, "I think I'm going through a little soul death." We both laughed,  because this is a very "me" thing to say, but we both know it is so real, that when my soul, when all our souls are on the verge of becoming the next thing, they do die a little.  

And then today, more snow, and though it's not much, it has a distinct power,  in addition to that strange Daylight Savings fatigue hanging out and on, and everything being still dark and frozen at 7 am, with the deep anticipation of Spring right around the corner.   Evie's new school/Co-op we've joined is closed, Ben's work got postponed, so we juggled around all our plans, because between snow and very bitter cold, it was obvious nothing was going to go as planned today. Welcome to my life, in some ways.

And also, welcome to the transformation.  We are in the thick of it ya'll, and these couple weeks before Spring are a real deep dive into what you're really being called to, and being pushed towards. I can't tell you how many people I've talked to within just last few days have been experiencing some version of this, some fire surging forward, some real ache of heart.  Something's going on. 

Before we step into anything else, (and I hope this isn't a spoiler),  we're probably going to be doing some luminous, and yet deep inner work. (Powerful time, powerful outcome ahead, and yet, expect some tears, or some potent longings coming through. Some shadow material.)

Transformation, ya'll! It is so real, and yet, it's hard to know what to with it, you know? I consider transformation very sacred time and space, that's not often given enough credit or reverence in our culture. And yet, it's one of the most potent opportunities we have to shed what we no longer want, or need, and step into our authentic self. 

It's the in between time. It's the liminal place.  It's the fraught, fecund, densely packed and alive places of ourselves, that we work through to give way to the next thing our soul, our life,  our being wants to bring forth.

Rumi calls it "a thunder hidden inside" which I just love.  I mean, can't you just feel it? A thunder hidden inside. (There's a song I'm partly named after called "They call the wind Moriah" .. .. but I think the alternate name could be ... "They call the thunder inside Moriah"). 

And here we are, mid-March, on the cusp of the equinox,  near the new moon,  when things start to unfurl again, come back to life, but man, right now,  it's slow going.  Oh so slowly changing, oh so taking it's time, snailing and meandering it's way back into Spring. (It reminds me of hiking with Evie, my 2 year old. Can we pick up the pace? Do you have to look at every single toad and mushroom?) She just stands there laughing at me...

You may be one of these people, too, going through your own potent transformations, your own becomings, your own tender, but very real evolution. 

It's like the transition into Spring is mirroring us. It's so close, and yet I feel like these next couple weeks are about cultivating, deepening, and listening very closely so we have the energy for whatever comes next. It's hard work. I wouldn't be surprised if your heart, or your chest, literally aches. 

Sometimes transformation is the most tender, true piece of ourself that we are not quite ready to bring to consciousness yet. It takes a long time to bring something forth. Sometimes you're not quite ready to name or put words to it, but it's the material that is literally brewing inside us that wants to take shape. It's the feeling, or the energy ripening before it takes shape in the outside. 

But man, transformation is not easy. It kicks up all the muck. All the stuff. All the things you thought you'd put to rest. All the hatchets you've already buried. All the grieves you've already burned off in some fire. 

And yet, and yet, here we are again. Sometimes, we hit another layer. Sometimes the most fertile ground is in these pieces.  Old parts of ourself that want to come to the surface, or just ferment a little bit longer. 

Transformation is not exactly the comfiest place to dine. I want to bury it, or maybe make it more seen. I am not even sure. I do know things usually want to come into the light, to grow, to blossom, but transition is often longer and more uncomfortable than we want it to be.

We are inching our way towards Spring, I know it,  but the wind and winter are hanging on, and it's raw out there, a bit sore. A bit like being alone with it, alone within it, with these new wings, these Magnolia trees trying to seduce us.  How much I want to be seduced by it all, and yet how I know the only way through is through, if we want to reach the other side. 

And it's natural to want to resist these changes.  It's natural to want to keep things at bay. To stay attached to our old loves. To not want to let go. Oh my god, it's the impossible some days, you know? It's like your heart is being hammered six feet under the ocean.   It's easier to keep things on an even keel, to not want to feel it, to not want to say it, to not experience the messy parts of the transformation. 

I want to say this to you though: the more you can let yourself die, the more you can be alive on the other side.  These "little soul deaths" or big soul deaths, depending on what's going on, and where you are in your life, are part of the process.  You literally can't get to the next place, the next love, the next creative project, the next part of yourself without honoring and going through the messy parts of it. You may be able to for awhile ~ youth has a way of making us resilient and faster at change again and again ~ but I guarantee at some point, all of us have to break out of what was, and become again. Hello, becoming real. Hello, becoming whole. Hello, soul death. Hello, transformation. 

There are things you can do to sort of ease the breaking of it, yes, but sometimes the only way through is through. 

HOWEVER!! It is important to let it happen, and it's also important to take really, really good care of yourself. Being especially tender during soul deaths is of utmost paramount. Don't force yourself through it. I used to get so hard on myself every time I started going through it, because I was like, "really Moriah? AGAIN?? You literally just went through something like this {insert arbitrary time-frame   .... 6 months ago... a year ago... last night...}."

These days, it's still hard, but I can anticipate it just a little more. 

So, I am taking care. We are listening to Nick Drake, and The White Album, and Neko Case, Patti Griffin, Dizzy Gillespie, Nina Simone, Dylan. I'm going to coffee shops with plants and flowers everywhere, and filling up on cuts of meat, and feeling my breath rise and fall. I'm taking walks in the cold, and letting it in and out.  I feel like being at bars I used to go to, and in baths filled with glistening bubbles and tears, and I want to write all the things down about it all so I don't forget. So many people I know are going through big transformations, and I just keep repeating to myself: "Everything has changed and yet, I'm the most me than I've ever been"~ Ian Thomas.

Hang on, friends, fighters, sweethearts, dreamers, anyone who has a soul, or a dream, or something you want to bring to life.  Reach out when you need to. Rest when you can. Dream deeply, write them down. Don't fill the holes with fools gold. (Maybe eat a donut, instead though?) Your inner gold, when you find it, is so much sweeter, so much more satisfying. 

Root through your feet and anchor into the Earth. Those sweet, soft succulent days are coming, I have a feeling. There are roses to be intoxicated by, and oceans to play in. Let the wild lightening see you through. Transitions are crazy intense, difficult, and sad sometimes, but this luminous, dark, messy, beautiful process also opens us up to some powerful portals and questions that I know we are hungry for, and that's where the vibrancy is. And the clarity. (And hopefully the money, love, and freedom, too, am I right??)

But in the meantime: let it melt you to your core, and you'll be back again. 

(this picture by Clarice Cliffton)