This time of a year is when my extrovert and introvert tendencies declare war on each other. My introvert self wants to hibernate on the couch under blankets with a good book and watch as the night descends early; keeping myself safe from cold and dark and Christmas music. My extrovert self wonders what all the cool kids are doing and wants those little corners of loneliness to be filled.
Last night looked at me in that fashion, her long slim fingers beckoning me out while visions of a good novel and Netflix danced in my head. Oh what to do…. Well, as luck would have it, I had an appointment with my life coach yesterday. I told her about this little conundrum. And I told her that I recognized that I was in a position to be vulnerable to loneliness.
These past few months, since starting my project, I have stopped my search for a partner. I have been selfish for the first time in a while, focusing on me, my life, my friends, my project. And I’m happier than I’ve been in a very long time. Have I been lonely? Well sure I have…..but lonely is on the range of human emotions which we are bound to feel at one point or another. And I’ll tell you something else. The last couple of years of my marriage were the loneliest I’ve ever felt in my life. So this brand that I feel these days? That I can handle.
The important part of what happened yesterday is that I stood back and I recognized my lonely. And then I made a conscious decision to not fill it the way I sometimes did, with social interaction or perhaps harmless (?) flirting. But what to do with the evening stretched before me? Life coach to the rescue. She gave me homework. She spoke to me of expressive arts. She knew that writing and my yoga practice were the ones that I used on a regular basis; but she encouraged to push myself.
My homework was to make a playlist. It was 1) the coolest homework I have ever been handed in my life and 2) supposed to be a playlist of songs that spoke to me of connection. I also told her that I had a rarely used yoga coloring book and colored pencils that I was willing to blow the dust off of. Here are the challenges of said homework: the playlist would require me to search beyond the sad bastard music that I usually listened to and the coloring book….well, has anyone ever seen my attempts at art??
But alas, I made a pot of coffee (in retrospect, I should have used decaf) and scattered my pencils around me on my bed. I turned on my speaker and my Spotify and opened the coloring book to a picture of a goddess riding a swan. This particular coloring book that I have consists of outlines of mandalas and goddesses and then on the back of the page explains the meaning behind each.
And I shit you not, the goddess that I had chosen at random to draw was Sarasvati, the goddess of creativity, knowledge, music, poetry and the arts. And as a river goddess, she is the power of grace that flows from a place beyond to find us beings on earth.
A river goddess. Seriously. And I know this does not mean a lot to you, friends. But just the previous day, I had wrapped up the latest chapter to my book. In said chapter, I spoke of rivers, of crossing the same one twice, of sitting on its banks with a man I once loved, of stalking its shores. I asked the woman that I had interviewed that week what she was looking for in a partner and she said “I want a fucking river god.” Same, girl. Same.
I am getting more certain than not that this project is slowly easing me to the point where I will accept nothing less than a fucking river god. But I know I’m not ready yet, I know that this time in my life still belongs to Sarasvati riding her swan. This time of my life is all about connection, but not perhaps in the ways I always thought it would appear. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.