Under a full moon, I was reduced to ashes. Not all of me…but more than I realized.
I built the fire outside. Chose the perfect pieces of wood~the knotty ones, ones with splinters and scars. They looked like I felt…beaten up a bit.
And as the flames grew, I tossed in bits and pieces of the last 43 years. I threw in pictures, letters, journal pages, ticket stubs. Even a small article of clothing. Things that were no longer necessary on my journey. Sad things and glad things.
Don’t mistake me. This was a good burn. I felt it down in my bones. I felt those who shared the photo frames with me nearby, urging me closer to the flames and saying let go… The words of the letters floated up in smoke right before my eyes, sweet memories of ancient history. I tossed the journals in whole, mixing the emotions in the cauldron of flame and ash. Their covers, each different in size and material, disappeared into a plume of smoke at different speeds. I could almost see each page as it burst into flame. I could see events and people and places drift up and away, leaving me warm, leaving me spent and tear-stained.
It some ways it was like a thousand little deaths. But as the flames themselves died and the smoke started to clear, I saw the embers~ the radiant leftovers of all that needed to be released.
I stood, tears drying on my face as a huge smile made my jaws ache, watching the embers rest in their bed of ashes. As those parts of history~my history~ were reduced to ashes, I made space for all that is to come. I made room for the present. I allowed the past to really be just that…past.
I’m grateful for what needed to be burnt, and I’m grateful for what new history is yet to be made. And more than that, I’m so very thankful for the ability to be right here in this moment, aware and awake to what is.