“Art requires both pride and disobedience. The pride of creation and the disobedience of disturbing the status quo.”
— Seth Godin
I’ve been really inspired by Rev. Lola’s recent message, “The Labor of Light,” and in the same breath frozen. Inspired to shine and share the labors of the light of my experience while also confronted with my fear of being seen – of sharing the shadow side of my light. The ugly, dark and painful parts of being a warrior – a laborer of the light.
Last month, a dear friend came to visit me. What was a very exciting and long overdue visit turned into a nightmare. That visit triggered me to the core. My dear friend who is the most gentle, sensitive man I know, was in the middle of healing from trauma at the hands of an ex-girlfriend and his energy was dripping with anger, hatred and betrayal. As a trauma survivor myself, his energy unintentionally set off every alarm in my psychic, physical, mental and emotional systems. My fight, flight, freeze mechanism was engaged and I was at the affect of it. I was closed off, distant, short, curt, jumpy, emotional, panicky, disassociated and on the edge of my seat for the entire visit.
One night in particular, I relived abuse I didn’t even know had happened to me. Thank you, brain for protecting me from those memories until I had the resources to do so.
In response to seeing, feeling and experiencing those buried memories, I was inspired to process my experience through a poem. I took my pain and turned it into something hauntingly beautiful.
After several therapy sessions, hours of crying, days of disassociated daze, I’m finally returning home – integrating and healing from those horrific nights of my childhood.
I’m profoundly grateful for my friend’s visit and how it unlodged those unconscious memories. Because inside each of those buried memories were beliefs of unworthiness, shame, guilt and pain that have been desperately seeking love, compassion, light and healing.
The labor of light means to me using resistance as an indicator and fear as a compass. I use these tools to guide me where the Light is being covered up by pain, false beliefs seaming real, traumatic past experiences still coloring the present, and where faith in the love of God is lacking.
The labor of light means to me using resistance as an indicator and fear as a compass.
I am #shiningbrightly by being devoted to knowing God where I don’t know God. I am #shiningbrightly by loving myself where hatred lives. I am #shiningbrightly by being gentle and compassionate where judgement and criticism are best friends. I am #shiningbrightly by feeling feelings that only need and want to be felt but are hard, painful and lonely to feel. I am #shiningbrightly by using art to create and disturb the status quo by allowing myself to be seen, to give voice to the horrors of abuse and to demonstrate healing and forgiveness where it’s permissible to pass. I am #shiningbrightly by bringing Light into the darkness.
I am Marsha Craig. I am #ShiningBrightly. Thank you for witnessing me.
How are you #shiningbrightly? Share your comments, questions and experiences in the comments below.
Photo credit: Matt Katzenberger via flickr