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Day 8: Being physically present and turning the intangible into that which can be touched

Updated: Dec 18, 2021

For whatever reason – maybe it’s the rain – I’m in a reflective mood today.  As a result, my thoughts and emotions are all over the place.  Usually, there’s a thought that rises to the top and takes its place as the topic I’ll write about.  But today…so many thoughts…all jumbled together.  I’m guessing there’s a thread within them…a lesson to be learned that will present itself after letting them out to crawl across the page and untangle.  We’ll see….

Today is the one week anniversary of my first day of retirement…and I’ve done nothing substantial.  I know, I know…its been one week.  Seven days.  What did I expect to accomplish??  Well, I had expected to be in India.  I would have been in Chennai for a week, building homes for those less fortunate.  Experiencing a completely new culture, bringing joy to those in need.  I would have been preparing for my journey to Delhi to begin a two week adventure touring India and Nepal with just a guide.  A solo trek so I could do some heavy soul searching, introspection, and intention setting.  

Instead, I’m trying to do it from the comfort of my home in Indy so I can be nearby in case my mom needs me.  Don’t get me wrong.  It was my choice to postpone the trip and to be honest, I’m relieved I did.  But I can’t help but feel that I’ve not accomplished much yet…not what I had expected to anyway.

People keep telling me that I’m in such a unique position to be able to take this time for myself.  They cheer me on in my quest to find peace, happiness, and love.  I feel like I’m letting them down somehow, though…like some major breakthrough should have occurred over the course of a week.  Dumb, I know.  But if I’m not careful, before I know it it’ll be day 50…day 140…day 365 and I’m terrified that I’ll still be sitting here.  Comfortable.  Introspective.  Alone.

I needed to shake this so I headed to yoga.  As Erin centered us on our mat, she told us to let go of the gripping.  To let go of that which did not serve us.  To release whatever may be weighing on our hearts.  There it was…he said our relationship was missing that “intangible” quality.  That’s why “The Taste” wasn’t in love with me anymore…because of an intangible.  

Interesting word…means “unable to be touched or grasped; not having physical presence”.  Makes it impossible for me to ask for clarification or argue…but he gets to write it all off over an “intangible”.  All that time invested…things said…dreams shared.  I believed every.word.  

So now I had to believe these words too.  Why didn’t I say “Fuck you and your intangible”?  I couldn’t.  Even now it doesn’t seem real.  His actions prior to and following certainly didn’t match his words, but his words…that word…it sits there in my heart.  I’m gripping on to it because letting it go means I need to let it all go.  And I need to let it all go.

Last night I met a friend for drinks and he was telling me about an ex that was staying with him until she could get back on her feet.  I asked if it was awkward and he said it wasn’t.  That despite the break up, they remained good friends and were closer than they had been when they were dating.  I gave him a quizzical look and he continued.  

He said there was something comforting about having her there.  Someone that knew him so well.  Someone to be silly with, confide in, drink a glass of wine with at 2 in the morning and just sit with.  She had become family.  No longer a romantic interest, but family.  The connection morphed into something supportive and beautiful for them.

Could that explain my confusion with his actions?  That closeness that we felt in the days following after he delivered the blow of not having that intangible…thing.  Was it because he looked at me like family?  Like a sister or something.  A trusted confidant to talk to and be near without the pressure of a romantic relationship?  Fuck you and your intangible.  Breathe…let it go.

Before getting delivered the knock out “intangible” punch, I had told myself that when I came back from India if I still wanted to be with him, I’d allow myself to go to him.  To meet him on his territory and open my heart.  My feelings weren’t a secret.  We’d both been very open with each other, but our jobs and distance and obligations kept us from moving forward.  I would be an untethered soul.  Free to roam about and follow my heart.  So that’s what I was going to do…even if it meant one or both of us moving to be near each other.  But now not only was India postponed, I had this missing intangible to deal with.

As we moved through the yoga practice, I trembled.  My entire body visibly shook.  I was unhinged, gripping onto the emotion swirling around that word.  Words carry so much power.  As I searched to determine the source of the trembling, I found nothing.  No words were popping into my head.  Nothing I thought was resonating with my heart.  But there was obviously something wrong…something spinning me up…something I couldn’t put my finger on…fuck.  It was intangible.  Ok….breathe.  Letting it go.

Last weekend I went to see my shamans with the intention of cutting the cord with “The Taste”.  For those that don’t know, “cord cutting” is the act of severing an energetic cord between two people.  The closer you are with someone, the stronger the cord can be to the point of people being able to energetically feel what’s happening with the other even when they’re apart.  I had this with him.  It’d been apparent for quite a while and it kept us dialed into each other.  It was time to severe…but I couldn’t do it.  

As I sat there – tears streaming down my face – asking for relief from this back and forth pull, they explained what would be involved.  Blocking his number.  Blocking him on Facebook.  No messaging.  Complete radio silence.  What if he needed me?  How would he understand what was going on if I couldn’t tell him?  

I didn’t want him to disappear, I just wanted to sever the romantic cord and start over with friendship.  I wanted to leave the past behind and start anew.  

Besides, if I’m completely honest with myself, there’s a reason he’s still in my life.  I wasn’t prepared for any sort of commitment either and he was mirroring that to me…so I could see it.  Feel it.  Face it.  No longer able to avoid the truth.  That intangible…that missing intangible…it wasn’t missing from the relationship, it was missing from me.  I’ll know when it’s there…when I’ve found it…when I’m truly ready for love.  It will no longer be intangible.

As Erin brought us into pigeon, I noticed the trembling had subsided.  I had connected back with myself…in a place of strength and support…with my heart.  The gripping was gone.  I relaxed into myself and breathed.  Inhale.  Exhale.  I had let it go.  But what exactly?  I let go of the potential of what could have been….of my expectations of what should have been…of searching for answers that I’ll never find.  Because it doesn’t matter.


A friend sent me a lovely email yesterday and in it he said “Keep looking forward, don’t dwell on ‘woulda, shoulda, coulda’.  Life will always be ahead of you not behind you.”  

He was absolutely right.  I was gripping onto the past…hoping to change it or at least understand it…when it doesn’t matter.  Life is now…in the moment.  And my future will be the result of ever so mindfully stringing together moments to light a path.

So as I sit here, having untangled the mess of emotions, it’s clear that the best way for me to make the most of my journey is to shake off the trembles…rid myself of expectations…cast off the potential…and stay right here.  Wherever “here” may be with child-like eyes and an open heart…mindfully choosing my words and the people I surround myself with.  By being physically present and turning the intangible into that which can be touched.


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