The Red Thread
Updated: Jan 16, 2018
As I was tossing that question out into the universe, I suddenly came upon a new thread... but I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's start with a statement. One you've probably heard, often. Likely within your own mind.
“Just let it go!” Don't know about you, but I've often wondered just WHO CAME UP WITH THIS?!! How is this helpful for dealing with stress? To make my point, let's give it a visual. Picture this: For years there has been a thread slightly unravelling from the woven fabric of my life. I keep pulling at it, working it back in, but it artfully slips away from my trembling fingers and demands more attention. I visualize it as a dull, dark red wool; thin with use, but raw and sharp.
I believe this thread is all about releasing old hurts, forgiving mistakes and pain caused not only by others but by myself as well ... and as I desperately try to force the recalcitrant fibre back into the weft and weave it has escaped, more change and harsh misadventures rain blows on the beleaguered cloth. At times it seems as though that darn red thread has a mind of its own, weaving itself around to touch every thread in the whole vast expanse of my life. A keen-edged, red, and tangled mess.
This thread has a name, and its name is Stress. And if I let go, the whole thing is going to fall apart. You may be wondering.,.. "What stress could she possibly have living on an acreage out in the quiet countryside? How could she possibly understand STRESS??
Now, I could spend some time here itemizing all the times I've been stressed and why, or I can get on to something much more interesting. Of course, if you are detail oriented you may want to watch a video or wait for the book, "42 Important Things I Learned from My Horse." Lots of juicy stuff in there.
What I really want to get into today is how so much of dealing with Stress is work. Dealing with the effects of stress on your body, mind, spirit and soul ... all work. Hard, dry, boring work. I know. I've tried a great number of ways to deal with stress. Walking the treadmill, weight reps, diet planning, the "how-do-I-stop-my-mind-racing" meditation torture, share the load with family and friends - talk - talk - talk. Not easy for us introverted sorts, by the way.
Each of these is good practice in and of itself, but it was work. Mainly because I just found it so dry and boring. It was difficult to stay focused on it. Then I'd stop. Stress would mount. I'd feel guilty. My self worth would take a nosedive and I'd judge myself a failure. A self-perpetuating motion machine. And round round I went, the ever-widening downward spiral of defeat. Complete with chocolate and weight gain.
Stress relief should NOT BE STRESSFUL! IF IT'S NOT FUN ... WHAT'S THE POINT??
As I was tossing that question out into the universe, I suddenly come upon a NEW THREAD... a thread of wondrous discovery, fluffy puppies and magical unicorns. A sense of hope and light began to settle in my heart. My soul sparked and my mind engaged. And spirit? Well, let's just quote an old song ...
"I'M SO EXCITED!! I JUST CAN'T HIDE IT! I'M ABOUT TO LOSE CONTROL,
AND I THINK I LIKE IT!"
There's an ancient proverb that talks about connection:
"An invisible red thread connects those who are destined to meet, regardless of time, place or circumstances. The thread may tighten or tangle, but it will never break."
We are connected and naturally drawn or attracted to what sustains us. I was SO DRAWN! Feeling the pull on this tangled red thread, I want to touch the webstrings of NIAL - based on organic psychology. Nameless Intelligent Attraction Loves - webstrings that connect all things in the known universe and beyond. Science-ifying the spiritual.
Threads or strings that activate and make water attractive when our bodies become dehydrated, that help decrease our blood pressure through the whisper of the wind in pine branches, that calm our nervous energy by synchronizing our heart to the soothing heartbeat of an equine partner. The pull of the thread that causes us to breathe with the vegetation that surrounds us in a gratitude-filled exchange of life. This thread is about connection to a self-balancing, self-sustaining organism. One we live within as a vital and essential part, valued and integral to the whole.
As I give up control and give in to the pull, the draw, the natural attraction, memories flood through me.
Memories of nature reconnection experiences. Memories so strongly part of my muscle memory, the fabric of my soul, that they smooth the tangles from my red thread with the simple remembrance of bird song and the scent of the earth after the rain. The soft, heart-healing breath of the horse on my cheek. I journaled those touchstone moments, reflecting on the significance and underlying meaning I discovered there, through words and art; and discover yet again, how powerful the mere thought of them can be.
And so, I take my current strand of red and tangled thread and weave it into art, an expression of joy, a release of pain, as the watercolour washes across the page, I feel a subtle shift in my consciousness, an understanding and acceptance of myself; and I am at peace within the chaos of the red tangled mess that is me.
...and... IT WAS FUN !!
...and because it WAS fun and rebalancing and stays with me as touchstone moments...
I can focus on the dry and boring long enough for good effect to take place.
Viva la diet and exercise! Sweet dreams and a good night's rest. Now as all things are connected, an invisible red thread will reach out from my chaos and play a song along the threads of your life. And where these threads touch, you will discover a webstring activating. That is my intention.