On Wednesday, this week, the evening prior to my planned leave of Massachusetts for the two-day drive home, I started to get cold feet. What about the weather? Would puppy Emma and I encounter tornados and baseball sized hail?
Now, safely home, this morning while perusing through the local papers from the past week, I discover that on that very evening of my discontent, a small tornado roared through the southwest portion of Bloomington, where I live, during one of the three huge storm systems that blew through while I was gone, all with high winds. Trailer trucks overturned, trailers smashed, roofs off apartment buildings and a few homes, hundreds of downed trees, either uprooted or as if sliced at the root. Indiana University estimates at least 300 trees down on its campus alone.
And in the local stories, over and over again, people talked about how our troubles are minor, compared to Joplin. Yes, I think, and compared to the New Madrid flood zone, or the Gulf catastrophe, or the ongoing Japanese catastrophe — not to mention Haiti, New Zealand and Chile.
Back to my return trip . . . All Wednesday night I tossed and turned. And when I woke up on Thursday, still felt unsure. Stay or go? Couldn’t seem to make up my mind. Everything in me wanted to go, yet my mind kept getting visions of me huddling with Emma in a culvert or under a bridge.
I decided to do some yoga. Maybe that would clear my mind, or align the rest of me with what my mind was worried about . . .
And, somehow, apparently I did manage a few moments of internal spaciousness, because into that subtle and welcome void I picked up the tiniest of whispers: “Stay or go, it’s your choice. If you go, we will protect you.”
Well, luckily that welcome space lasted another moment or two, because just as this whisper came in, I also, actually, consciously, became aware of it. And took it seriously. And decided to leave.
At 9:50 AM, Emma and I were outta there. The leaving was easy. My grandchildren, Kiera and Drew, were already in school, Sue was on an errand, and Sean was at work. I did get to say tentative goodbyes to all but Kiera before they left — all of us laughing at both my unease and my huge internal need to go.
Despite my newly wrestled and won decision, of course as I drove I kept looking at the sky for signs of thunderheads and tornado spouts. But the morning was hazy, even lazy, as if the beautiful forested hills I was passing through in western Massachusetts had never seen the kind of destruction currently targeting the midwest.
About three hours into the drive, soon after passing all the signs to Albany on I-90 and once again heading straight west, I noticed that the haze had shifted into clouds.
Paranoia twinged back in. I glanced out the window to my left, and up into the sky. And there my eye immediately locked into a very long cloud formation shaped like a a sort of cigar, or better yet, like a foot-long subway sandwich loaf. (Unfortunately, I didn’t even think to stop the car for a photo.) From that time on, clouds were forming and dissolving and reforming with unusual rapidity during that entire drive, and yet I swear this particular cloud did not change its shape much, and remained in the same spot relative to me, SE of my left shoulder, for at least two hours.
From my first glance, I saw it as an ET mothership, and felt, yes, protected, just as the whispered voice had said I would be.
Another part of me looked at me seeing the cloud that way and marveled, no, scoffed at my childlike gullbility. Geez, is this what it takes for me to feel safe these days? But “I,” my egocentric mind, couldn’t shake the feeling of being both watched and protected.
That cloud reminded me of another day, when I had been on an outing to the southern part of Indiana, again with little dog Emma, and had seen what appeared to me to be small scout-type cloudships form and reform in the sky all around me. As if I was being accompanied by a bevy of frolicking little boats, all cheering me on. They were not protective, just companionable. As if we were all enjoying the beautiful day.
That was the only other time in my life that I have had a strong feeling of being accompanied by cloudships. And just like this time, my ego-mind scoffed at the childlike wonder with which the greater part of me greeted my companions.
And yet, why does the idea of cloudships so disturb the ego-mind? Why does it reserve its scoffing for this kind of phenomena especially. For I have felt connected, welcomed, protected, intertwined with beings of many kinds and in many dimensions, for years now. It’s as if the atmosphere within which I live has completely shifted. No longer do I see the world from inside a lonely Newtonian billiard-ball framework, disconnected objects knocking each other about in empty space. Now what I see/feel/be is currents flowing, merging, a swirling fluidic ocean of warmth, a loving consciousness interpenetrating and holding all in its invisible embrace.
Ever since my husband died I have felt this, what I’ve learned to call The Love Field. At first I thought it was him, his presence protecting me. And perhaps it was. I marveled, at the time, at how thin the veil between this 3-D world where I still lived, and the ultradimensional one that he now frolicked in; for I did feel him that way almost immediately upon death — happy, gloriously free and wanting me to know it and feel it and share with him the sonorous, multihued glory of infinite creation.
It’s been over eight years now since he died, and the feeling of being softly held in the embrace of Love has never left me. Oh, sometimes it thins, like the night before I was to leave Massachusetts, and the next morning — until I finally surrendered to the spaciousness and picked up on the whispered promise.
So I’m home again, where I belong, in Love.
Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it. — Rumi