Out with the Old, In with the New

© Michele Lauren Hummel)  

"All this Joy, all this sorrow
All this promise, all this pain
Such is life, such is being
Such is spirit, such is love".

These are some of the lyrics from a John Denver song I'm currently working on. The tune is entitled, "All This Joy".

Like the yin and yang, can we know one without the other? Can we know what light is if we haven't the dark for comparison. Are light and dark, pleasure and pain exclusive of each other? Aren't there infinite shades of gray, and isn't there pleasure in pain, and pain when joy reaches a point of unbearable ecstasy?

Last week, I was writing about the advisability of letting go of whatever no longer serves our lives well, be that old love letters, unused linens, irrelevant files on hard drives or in cabinets.

At the beginning of this year, my child-hood girlfriend was relating to me the trials around cleaning out her mother-in-law's condo and disposing of the stuff. She was dispassionately dealing with the beloved, prized and sometimes hoarded possessions that were the ultimate detritus of this woman's life. Without an emotional attachment of some sort to an item, the Thing is just a thing, to ultimately be sent along to its next station in this world.  In a conversation this morning with another dear friend, he stated that things we have that we love have an eternal quality. Further, the act of discarding a symbol of love's expression does not feel good. But, after all, where does it end before one is run out of house and home?

My friend, a fine photographer, calls photos "love on paper". I really liked that image. Most of us of whatever photographic ability, take snapshots, which the more organized of us put in albums. Yet, many of us have them stuck in envelopes and boxes tucked away where we may or may not ever look at them, wherein they will ultimately be discarded eventually by someone anyway. If we do pull out these photos from our yesteryears, what emotion do we experience? Joy, sorrow, pleasure, pain? The photos are remainders and reminders of the life and love where we have been.  For many of us, it is so hard to let go of a reminder, a remainder of love.  My friend asked, "When does physical separate from that love expression?" I thought about my beloved aunt's linens that I'm still hanging on to. When will she be separate from those items? Maybe never, as long as I hold on to that concept. My friend referred to separations and changes as "touching love's edges". Yet there comes a time to clean out the cupboards and say, "sayonara". Let it go. It eventually feels good and clean and powerful.  Cleansing and growing goes as fast as it goes. Yet, in the process, the new tissue of the physical and/or emotional body has a new place to grow in clean and strong.

Another friend reminded me that we all can choose to live in the now…to start fresh, to throw out the old kitty litter. That right now is a great time to write new music, sing new songs, dance new steps, make new beliefs, create new habits, take new pictures, make new loves, take a chance on yourself, and for All's sake, Lighten Up!

"World of joy, world of sorrow
World of promise, world of pain
Such is life, such is being
Such is spirit, such is love…."   

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