Every life has one of these. Sometimes there is more than one, but if you are living life, I guarantee you will have your tree shaken at least once. Maybe gently, maybe ferociously, but never the less, shaken. Having your tree shaken can look like so many things. To name a few: illness, an accident, maybe even diagnosed with only months to live. It can look like a miscarriage or the death of a child or parent. It might be divorce or betrayal by a loved one. Maybe it is violence and abuse. maybe bankruptcy or being wrongly accused of a crime. The list is vast and the result is that the life you knew is interrupted. Not just interrupted for a time. Changed forever. Your life takes on a new flavour and the life you knew fades.
I spoke to a beautiful friend who I had the pleasure of spending a week with. I hadn’t seen him for a year and what had transpired in his life in that time was an instant complete heart failure. The diagnosis was beyond grim. It was highly likely terminal. I cried heavy sobs of shock when I heard the news that he was to be taken off the life support to say his farewells to his wife, and yet some 12 weeks later, here he was sitting on the couch, talking to me about his tree being shaken. He said that everything was changed. Everything. His perspective of everything had changed. It was new and different and he was deeply and humbly awake now.
My tree was shaken the day I knew my marriage was over. It was painful and yet I could not ignore my heart ache any longer. I was terrified and one night I looked at my sleeping children and thought that I had failed in a devastating way and it would all turn to dust. I sat still with myself and listened and waited and it came to me. Everything I was moving towards, that I thought I wanted, were decisions that came from fear. So it did all turn to dust in me and in that moment I began to let go of every rule I had ever had that I thought was the glue of how I lived. It all blew away and what was left was the obvious next step towards my new life, a life that looks so different and feels so different to my past life as a wife that I look at it like a story of someone else.
I have a friend who had a still birth of her baby and since then has given birth to a baby who was hospitalised twice for whooping cough in his first year of life. It was exhausting and she was shaken to her core with fear and worry about her new baby. It brought up all the pain from her still birth and it was overwhelming.
My oldest friend came straight from having lunch with her Mum and Dad, to the park for a play date. An hour later the phone call came that her father had fallen from a ladder. I stood by my friend 24 hours later as the life support was turned off. She fell into a well concealed mist for about three years after.
Our tree is shaken and as much as we resist it, it can hurt. The more we resist it, the more it hurts. They say that when you fall you should relax your muscles so that you are more likely to bounce instead of break. The same can be applied to our desire to hold it all together for fear of what will happen when it all shakes. Shake, it will, and to relax into that unknown place is the best thing we can do. Give up our needing to know how it will go and what we can do to lock it down.
Facing what our heart calls to us, and living from the inside out every minute of our life is a powerful navigation tool, if we will but use it. It will show us the place beyond the clouds. I know from my own shaken tree experiences that the clouds do part and our heart will lead the way. I truly believe, for those courageous enough to be guided by our own ability to respond from our heart, that strangely the version of us on the other side is so much more textured, succulent, compassionate and awake to the diversity and preciousness of life. That is the moment when the fruit falls from the tree and we can bend down, pick it up and take a sweet bite.
– Lotus Indigo Shakti