Monday, 4 February 2013

Breathe in Love by Julie Gibbons

The last weeks of 2012 and the first week of 2013 offered me the biggest gift of my life. That time saw me spend every day (and often nights) caring for my dearest mama as she was dying from cancer. It was at the same time exquisitely painful and beautiful.

Healing Light

We were luckier than many people - we'd had time to prepare for the end. You see, she'd been diagnosed just over a year previously. But I'll let you into a secret, you can never really be truly prepared for what it means to see your closest and dearest face the end of their life. So many rich lessons. So many laughs. All those tears. Kisses galore. I can feel my heart expand into my whole chest even as I write this and think of it.

More Filo index cards #aedm2011

It was, quite literally, the darkest of times. Mum became very ill in the weeks approaching winter solstice and it seemed to be relentlessly grey and wet outside, amplifying the already persistent dark we get used to during midwinter in Scotland.

But there was treasure in it, oh so much treasure! The tealights glowed against the darkness and our chakras were balanced beyond measure with repeated plays of our favourite CD. It was a sacred experience. Fecund. Many life changing teachings and illuminations.

One teaching trumped them all. One illumination outshone the rest.

Lighting a candle for you. I  you IG friends :)

That lesson was love.

We - each and every one of us - have access to an infinite wellspring of love. When we need to, we can tap into it anytime. Honest.

Sometimes we need to give it and oft times we need to let go and simply receive ...

I am not a natural nurse. I don't suppose many of us are. Caring for your dying mother, it comes as no surprise, is not all glorious and temple like. It gets messy - and I don't mean just in your mind.

Each day brought us many new challenges, most of which were completely outwith our ken. The sheer relentlessness of it was a surprise. The practicalities of it all, a mystery!

All of this meant that I sometimes found myself sitting outside in the car taking very deep breaths trying to prepare myself for what I was about to face when I walked through her door. There was a constant level of high anxiety, the like of which I'd never before experienced.

But when I did walk through the door, everything changed. I was enveloped in sheer, loving calm. The anxiety vanished and the love took over.

... is all you need #heart #red #gift

But our senses were still on high alert and whenever I left her, I was aware of the anxiety creeping in to overtake, to prevent sleep, to colour every single moment. And that's when I began the mantra
Breathe in love. Breathe out calm.
So even if I wasn't in her presence, I could still wrap myself in the comforting love and calm I felt when I was. Love got us through in the end.

Love helped me deal with what was to come next. When I begin to lose myself in all of the hurt and the loss that hovers, waiting to hijack my senses, I breathe in the love.

Her love. My love. Your love.

We are all love.

Julie Gibbons enjoys art journaling, journal therapy and mixed media. Her passion is self discovery through intuitive, creative practice, to reveal personal patterns, symbolism & archetypes of the true self.


23 comments:

  1. My heart is full, dear Julie. Thank you for sharing the love.

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    1. And many thanks to you for spreading the ripples, dear Jamie xo

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  2. Breathing in the love you have shared here, Julie. I am comforted and blessed by it, by your words, your journey. Thank you for your generous and tender heart. xo

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    1. Surely a blessing to share with you as you begin 2013 facing loss, also dear Juli xo

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  3. Feeling blessed by all the love you have shared Julie, such tender, bittersweet words, thank you xo

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    1. So happy to see you visit this new corner of my world, lovely Rachel. Thank you xo

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  4. So beautifully expressed...thank you for sharing.

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  5. Julie,
    Two years ago, I was where you were this year. You have put it so eloquently into words. Thank you so much for writing it down. Those last weeks with my mom, I did things I never knew I could do. I just did them. I didn't ask or question. I just did the next thing that needed doing. You are so correct that it was love. It was filled to overflowing with love.

    My brother kept saying, he could not do what I was doing. He could have, he just didn't have to. We each have our special things we can do for those we love. Mine were different from his but his were no less important. I've been feeling off for a few days...February reminds me of my mom. Thank you for this wonderful blog post. It has helped me tremendously.

    You are in my thoughts and prayers. This first year is hard. I hope it will comfort you to know she is at peace now and no longer suffering.

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    1. Dear Boo. Thank you for sharing your story here. Yes, we don't think we could ever do them, but we do, yes we do. Thanks you for your thoughts and the prayers. I'll light a candle for you and your mum, too xo

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  6. Julie

    thank you for sharing this experience. I could feel the love anxiety and calm all coming through your words. may you heal whole again.

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    1. Many thanks Anita, I can feel the healing already at work xo

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  7. Dearest Julie, what a beautiful beautiful post. I really hope I am as brave as you when it is my turn. xx

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    1. Dear Neets - you are one of the bravest folk I know. Your love will see you through whe it is time. Much love to you and your mama xo

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  8. Dear, dear Julie, what a blessing you have shared this with us, even during such a difficult time for you. What a vivid and poignant reminder for us all to breathe in love and breathe out calm in all our doings and to simply reside in love. It really does get us through everything. xoxo

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    1. It really does, yes Kristin - thank you xo

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  9. What beautiful words you have written. Thank you so much for sharing with us.

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  10. Thank you so much for such an exquisite post.

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    1. Much love to you Trece - thank you for reading xo

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  11. My heart's expanding to fill my chest right now Julie.. so moved by your beautiful words and the love xoxo

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