"Unconditional positive regard." This is how I describe my relationship with my dear friend, P____, in whose home I live currently.
Only Time will tell. I know. I have loved and lost before. I have been loved....and then rejected before.
But for now, this is the spirit of our engagement. I hold it as blessing in my life. We have an honorable relationship (see previous posts on "honor" in relationship).
We are honest with each other. We use considered, sensitive language with each other.
It is a voluntary, fully-conscious improvisation with two women--a mother and daughter. And me...a daughter estranged from her own mother...and her own son. Memory currents of feeling run old and deep in each of us. Conflict is unavoidable between humans. The critical question is "how do you handle conflict?"
These days I talk about the "amazing grace" that holds me. The tender, willing improvisation and the unconditional positive regard are primary expressions of this gifted time. Yes, it is good to have shelter and food without undue stress. It is good to be in a relatively warm climate. It is good to have found, already, a group of artists to play with (I think of us as the InterSplay group...more on this later). My shoulder injury appears to have been only a bad sprain and movement is almost completely recovered.
It's all good. It's all graceful and generous.
It's nurturing. I am drawing, playing piano, writing music for the UU Fellowship that P____ leads, playing guitar, dancing/moving with the InterSplayers.
It's all good. Everything feeds everything else and wraps my life in amazing grace.
This sojourn is retreat. Sabbatical. Furlough.
I had uncertain goals when I arrived a month ago and grew anxious about the lack of definition after a few days. There is nothing to prove here and so each day my relaxation deepens; I am more and more comfortable in my skin.
I am reading
A Life at Work by Thomas Moore
Black Pioneers in a White Denomination by Mark Morrison-Reed
The Cornel West Reader
Mother Teresa; Come Be My Life: Private Writings of the Saint of Calcutta
Even the appearance of these texts at this time in my life is part of the amazing grace.
What this picture has to do with anything is not immediately apparent but a conversation tonight led to some research online (for starters: WTF is this machine called?) during which I have not yet uncovered any discussion of the history of the machine but did find this image which I like enough to share.