be here now, she says

I said “be here now” to both of my kids this morning. It’s the second day of school in a city they don’t want to live in. And they don’t believe they’ll be living here much longer, because that’s a conversation that’s been had without me at their other house. “I’ve decided I don’t really want to make friends here, anyway,” said my 8th grader. After nine months of living in this town, none of us have made friends here. That’s the trouble with relocating during a pandemic. “Be here now” I reminded her. This moment is what’s real. Everything else is a story. I’m saying it out loud even as I’m here struggling at the top of my own spiral, one that could send me down down down, lost and breathless under the weight of what if, under the sorrow of disappointment.

I’ve worked hard, practicing the release of expectation, practicing presence, grounding into what is, and being nimble with what comes my way. Without expectation, disappointment can’t take root. Without expecting an outcome, or without wanting things to be a certain way, then there is nothing on which disappointment can threaten, totter, or topple. And yet I always expected I’d have a sense of belonging within the family I helped create. That my kids would find home in my presence, even if the physical walls of where we live may vary. I expected that when I uprooted and relocated and dropped every last dime into a move to a new state that even if I didn’t ever hear a “thank you” from their dad who wanted the move in the first place, that the kids and I could at least settle into some stability. Such a basic expectation, but an expectation nonetheless. And I’m not practiced enough for this new shift, the one in which their dad wants to relocate again, to a city the kids do want to live in, to where their best friends are, to where I am not … because now I am here.

I want to say that “be here now” is enough. That being is enough and belonging to myself is enough and non-duality is the reality and the hurt I’m feeling right now is born of ego and wanting. But honestly, I’m not that enlightened. And I am afraid of loneliness and rejection by those I love the most. And I am feeling those things right now.

A receipt for domain renewal for this long-neglected website just slid into my inbox. So I followed its path and it led me here, to vomiting out a heartdump into this draft of a blog that I may or may not publish.

Be here now, I said. But being here now can sometimes really hurt.

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