These personal musings are inspired from political and other upheavals that the U.S. is currently experiencing this Thanksgiving week of 2016.

In a topsy turvy, upside down, funhouse mirror sort of way I feel that my world has opened up lately. What I mean is that suddenly I’m defining myself differently and doing so with much greater ease.

This redefining of self brings to mind hawkers in Victorian literature I read as a student or of criers at the circus, “step right up for something new and fresh,” only it’s not chestnuts roasting or a curiosity sight. It’s me, a bit more authentic and much more at a loss as to what I’m seeing, because I don’t fit into the me mold that I created years ago.

Who I find as I step out of that mold is unfolding in front of me.

I think of Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus,” a painting I saw a lot as a child living in Florence. It looks like Venus is being birthed in a half shell from the water. I can still remember imagining Venus plucking me up right there in the Uffizi museum. We’d glide invisibly together through the crowd until drifting outside and above the river, Arno. It felt as if I, too, was emerging from the sea in a half shell. Even though brief, I momentarily felt shiny and iridescent, like a pearl.

It’s very freeing to “spend” time with Venus. She represents many things, but to me, she embodies self-love. A baby glows with love. As a kid or an adult, emotional and physical scars can erase self-love. Emotional scars are usually signs of battle, or at least, resistance of some sort. They’re as substantive as physical scars. Sometimes I see clearly my own emotional scars, especially when I act out or react, to certain situations or people. I can also see that I’ve passed some of my emotional scars on to my kids, similar, I suppose, to passing on my DNA. 

In this topsy turvy, upside down, funhouse mirror kind of world, I feel that Venus is, once again, near me. I notice that many battle scars no longer define who I am or never really did. I’m reminded that history doesn’t define who I am unless I let it. Like a domino effect, I envision that as my scars fade and disappear they will also fade and disappear from my children. As I learn how to embrace myself with more openness and joy I feel all possibility coming alive in myself, my ancestors, and my children and their children.

One reason I feel grateful for the, at least 6.9 magnitude, shaking of my world right now is because it’s breaking all kinds of molds everywhere. I see myself and others choosing to act, to think, to feel, to be different. It’s affecting our past, present and future.

The contrasts between people, ideas, politics, religion, and beliefs are so great in my world right now that it gives me unusual courage to learn and grow from such extremes. It allows me to comprehend more than ever that the constantly present sub atomic particles-which make up everything- are in perpetual motion signifying that I can always focus and shift who I am.

Change seems easier to me at this moment as I choose to harness the topsy turvy, upside down, funhouse mirror kind of energy. I invite you to join me.

Happy Thanksgiving! 3>