It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it. I want to know if you can stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.~Oriah Mountain Dreamer
I have been through many fires. Metaphorical fires, not literal but they were hot still the same. Many men in my life were unable to withstand the flames. Many friends in my life are no longer my friends because my flames were too hot for them and they felt singed by the heat. I find that many times in my life, other humans are not able to withstand the heat and fires of my life.
I used to be told it was me. I was the common denominator so it was my fault. I have learned through the years that some people endure more trauma than others. That is just life. It is not one’s fault. It just is.
As I have dealt with hotter fires in my life, so to speak, fires, like Cancer, twice, side effects of all the chemotherapy I did and now Hashimoto’s, I am finding more and more people who are able to stand near the fire at least.
Some people never have fires they have to put out. I used to be envious of them. Until I realized they were unable to grow. They did not know how to handle struggle when it came along. They had not built a stronger character.
While these things in my life have been excruciatingly hard, they have shaped me, molded me and made me the person I am today.
On my personal blog, I share some frustrations I had with my spouse. We all have them. No marriage is perfect. In meditating and looking over things though I realized something today…
He has stood in the fire and not shrank.
He has sat with me in pain and not tried to fix it.
He has dealt with nothing but putting out fires since we got married.
And he is still here.
It is rare to find a person who can do that.
I am ever thankful for that. Publicly and eternally I wanted to say that.
Even more than that, I want to share with those of you who also have had fires in your life. Maybe you have had your fair share of them. Maybe you have only had a few. Maybe you could write a book about it and no one will believe you. Maybe you have only had one.
Whether your fires have been one or many, I want to assure you something no one told me…
It is NOT your fault.
Just because you are the common denominator does not always mean you are the cause. It does not mean that you are always the reason the fires start. You may be the one always having to put them out and that’s all that others see. You may be the one always in the middle of the fire, but that doesn’t mean you started it.
I want you to know that and I want you to understand I know where you are coming from. I am tired of getting blamed for my fires. I’m sure you are too!
I am not saying there are not people who need to take ownership and if that is you, take ownership already! Fix your life and get your shit together!
However, you could just be the one in the middle and that sucks and I am sorry. I feel for you. I didn’t ask for the trauma in my life at age 8. I didn’t ask for it at age 10. I didn’t ask for it in my teens or in my twenties. I didn’t ask for Cancer either, but I got it. Those fires happened and I had to be strong enough to put them out. Sometimes all on my own with no one there to help me. You might be on your own feeling like you have no one either. It’s okay. It sucks, but you will be okay. You will be stronger for it.
If you are lucky, you will find people who stand next to you while your fire is blazing and rub their hands together and say “Let’s get some marshmallows!”
You might find people who are willing to help you put your fires out.
You might find people who aren’t afraid to get a little singed with you because they know they will be okay too. They won’t shrink back.
The people who can sit in pain with you and not try to FIX YOU and just love you for who you are, fires and all are the best and they are out there!
If you can’t find them, maybe it is time to become one!
~XoXo Trisha Trixie
For the full quote from The Invitation:
“It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain! I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul; if you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see beauty even when it’s not pretty, every day, and if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes!”
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up, after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you, from the inside, when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.”