Last night I had a dream, a vivid, realer-than-real dream that I know I will remember all my life. I retold it as soon as I woke and then scribbled it down so I wouldn’t forget.
I dreamt that when humans experience too much grief they swap their souls with a seabird. It was explained to me, in my dream, that nobody on Earth will even notice the transition; you will look on the outside completely like your old self, your face and mannerisms will not alter, neither will your intelligence, your capability to do your job, drop the kids off at school and make a banging lasagne. Your soul, however, belongs to a seabird.
The sea bird has powerful swooping wings, brown tipped feathers and ruffled waxy feathers of pure snow white. And you travel with your soul tucked inside this beautiful creature. You soar so high above the world you see things you couldn’t see before, the way the ocean moves as if it breathes, the way the moon pulls the waves back and forth in an ancient dance, the way the tallest mountains are but tips poking through the clouds below you. Humans are invisible to you. With the wide stretch of your strong wings you quite literally soar above your own pain and you begin to remember beauty and your own truth. You regain power through feeling the power of the wind underneath your freckled brown feathers. You find your peace in finding that you are peace.
I was the seabird last night in my dream. I felt the soaring strength, the deep swoop, the height and the power of flying through the wind. I knew this dream was a metaphor - meant as a message from deep wisdom. To help me see and put into words the imperceptible and profound shifts that I have been feeling lately. I did soar. I roared across the seas and swooped over valleys, raw with terror. My grief was too much. And I know that I left myself, my body. I know this only because I have started to come back. Fear has started to leave my body, I can feel it go. And in its absence there is space for me to come home to myself and live inside my body. To breathe deeper. To welcome the wonderful thoughts.
As I woke up, these words stirred and settled, rising with me, as I left my subconscious for another day,
‘If we can capture anything from the ‘great soar’, it needs to come back to Earth, to be shared. In our stories.’
In our stories. That phrase stuck with me, just as the beautiful story of the sea bird did. Nothing softens the darkness like stories shared. You have no idea who needs to hear your words.
Writing, for me, created space. I feel it with every half formed story, sentence and chapter I write: non-fiction; blog; novel. I just need to write. There are so many ways to create space inside yourself. Breathwork. Mindfulness. Yoga. Gardening. Singing. Running. Walking. Today I want to give a huge shout-out to all the women who are working in the holistic health world - your work literally allows us to make space, to heal and then to grow what we really want there. I know Shona will have many women she will want to shout out to. These are mine: Wildfire Magazine; Tracy Ward; Yvonne Fielding, Kate Fox from the Roar Movement.
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