The fire that started in my belly seeped into every nook & cranny of me right into every bone. seeped in good & deep.
I had just spent two days with seven women. Seven women I had never met before. We had sat around each other to talk about peace – the kind of the inner & the kind that is sown out there in the world in neighbourhoods & communities. We laid it bare & naked before us, leaving nothing to the imagination.
Who would have thought dialogues about peace would uncover honesty, authenticity & the out-pouring of souls, so palpable you could touch it? & taste it on your lips?
Who would have thought I would be breathless & crying when asked to ponder peace & to speak of it from the heart?
I had it all figured out. I was a woman on a mission. I was going to walk into the meetings with my mind & my intellect ready to go: ‘Peace is A, B, C. Ok. Let’s go.’ After all, I am a thinker & I was ready to hammer peace into its place with my mind.
The very first thing the facilitator said was “this is not going to be a mental exercise on peace”. Suddenly, the rug that had comfortably sat beneath my feet was yanked away. This was not what I came for. It was meant to be in & out. surgical precision. clean & simple.
It turned out to be more beautiful than I could have imagined – the very right thing I needed at the right time.
It’s amazing what happens when you put whole-hearted women in a room. Masks come off & all that is left is a realness that is heartbreakingly beautiful.
As we undressed peace, he came & sat in the midst of us holding on tightly to his silver-ash gray suit but willing & ready to do his work. We were all women of different ages, from different cultures & backgrounds. We’ve all led different lives & yet all shared of our journey & had the opportunity to walk in each other’s shoes & to hold each other’s stories within our hearts. Forever. Imprinted & sealed.
Our discussion about creating peace in our lives & in the world became a discussion about fear, doubt, courage & faith. For to talk of peace is to talk about the things that bring war into our lives – the storms of life that sometimes sweep in violently changing our lives forever. Leaving their mark. To talk of peace is to talk of forgiveness & letting go of the hurts & pains that so easily seep into our beings & claim the right to define us. It is to talk of our hearts, because peace begins in the mind, heart & soul before it can flow to the person outside of us. Without that peace there can be no peace.
We didn’t just sit & talk. No, don’t get me wrong. We lovingly ripped ourselves apart & lovingly helped each other to put each other back together. I want you to take this seriously for it was a work that left all of us in awe. Our search & great desire to handle peace took us through mountains & valleys of personal breakdowns, trauma, divorce, sadness, mistrust, fear, pain, suffering, affirmations, life-callings, love-making, transitions & hope.
The world is in turmoil. People are hurting. We wouldn’t know because we all wear masks. But behind closed doors, our little souls quake with worries, fears & insecurities. We don’t actively seek peace as it should be sought. Peace is a lover we have to woo. He will never come of his own free will. & yet when we capture his heart, he touches the lives of those who come into contact with us. It is a beauty I do not have the words for.
I met some incredible women & I don’t know if my life can ever be the same again. From where he elegantly stood at the centre, peace cast longing gazes at me & promised to never leave. He romanced me with his emerald-green eyes.
The flame may burn dimly sometimes but it will never vanish.
As I stood around those gorgeous hearted women in the closing moments of our journey together with my belly full of fire, I felt the sacredness of the moment. I felt the sacredness of the work we had done. There was no doubt in my mind as I felt peace grab my hand & intertwine his long elegant fingers with mine. wrapping me up. so intimately. so fully. caressing me senseless. I was ready to make love.