Recently, I’ve been having a very unusual experience. I feel great and I don’t feel great. I’m in love with my life and I’m grieving my life. Confused? Yeah, me too.
I got out my trusty mind-body journal (which is just a spiral bound notebook where I use all my own tools on myself). I went outside to sit quietly and be with myself. In Wyoming, that means sitting in a clump of sagebrush. I picked a spot with a great view of a beautiful valley, breathed in the scent of sage, and got quiet. I asked my soul to help me understand what is going on in my life right now.
Soon after I asked, I heard my soul’s answer. It said, “You’re in the In-Between.”
The In-Between is a place the mind doesn’t fully grasp. The In-Between requires the wisdom of the body and emotions and soul. Otherwise, the mind just gets confused.
My soul helped me to understand the In-Between. As I sat, I saw images of my life this year like pictures on a movie screen.
Getting pregnant for the first time in my life
Celebrating the pregnancy with my husband
Working on my coaching business
Having a miscarriage
Grieving with my husband
Grieving, in general
Discovering new things about myself
Finding out I wasn’t saying everything I wanted to say – to readers, to clients
Getting new ideas for my business
Being in the process of starting new projects
Considering getting pregnant again
Waiting for my body to feel like getting pregnant again
Waiting for my soul to feel like getting pregnant again
Being in the process of renovating and redecorating my house
Being in the process of creating a new website and new material
Doing new work, with new people
Not having the end vision yet, for anything
Right now, everything is started. Nothing is done. I don’t have a full vision of what everything will look like. I’m not totally sure what I want, yet. I’m exploring. I’m not deciding. I’m looking at all the different flavors. I’m tasting them. I’m not sure yet which ones I’ll choose.
My soul explained that the In-Between is necessary. It is, in fact, more important than the Not In-Between. Nothing, and I mean nothing, can happen without the In-Between. Nothing can be born without the space from which to be born. Healing happens in the In-Between. The In-Between is about discovery. It’s the thing that happens before gestation. Even before a seed is planted.
In music, there’s a thing called a rest. It’s a notation on the music score that tells you to not make any sound for a certain number of beats. Most beginning musicians ignore the rests. Their eyes skip over them and see the next music note on the page. As a teacher, I used to have to explain, over and over again, that the rest was just as important as the note. That it was more important, because if you played in the rest, the music no longer worked. Playing in one rest could mess up an entire symphony. It could cause cacophony and dissonance. It could bring the entire orchestra to a grinding halt. Now I’m explaining to myself that the rest is just as important as the note.
The In-Between is a rest between two notes. It’s the murky, not-clearly-defined place between imagining and creating. I am imagining a lot right now. I imagine different colors of home décor in different rooms in my house. I imagine giving birth in different months of the year. I imagine different images on my website.
I don’t decide. Yet. I don’t start.
Maybe tomorrow I’ll know more. In fact, this week I did choose some colors for the living room. They feel right. But the living room is still in process.
I pick one little thing at a time. I imagine some more. I listen to my body.
And, I grieve. Still.
In my opinion, we think the grieving process is a lot shorter than it really is. At first, grief is like a flood. It consumes everything we do. Later in the process, it becomes like summer thunderstorms. It arrives suddenly and passes quickly, several times a week.
I’m learning to let grief be a part of my life. I’m learning that it’s okay to be in the middle, half this and half that, undecided, in and out – In-Between. The In-Between allows me time to process and assimilate the changes necessary right now to make my life an authentic representation of me.
My living room wasn’t quite me
My business wasn’t quite me
My website wasn’t quite me
I wasn’t quite me in my relationships
I wasn’t quite me in many ways.
I need a solid foundation of authenticity in my life before I race forward into What’s Next. I’m building it. I’m course-correcting where I need to – where I got off track due to not listening to my soul. Where I forgot to check in to see who I am, right NOW.
Course-correcting is just part of living. Sometimes I make little course corrections in a day, an hour, a minute. Other times I make a giant course correction that includes every aspect of my life.
The last time I made a giant course correction was when I stepped onto the mind-body path and decided to learn how to heal my body by bringing my mind, body, emotions, and soul into harmony. It was a major life change. It led to me being more authentic, to following my true dreams, to becoming a coach, and to giving myself permission to be me.
Then, I grew. I changed. I learned. It is time to catch up with myself again, and to really look closely at everything in my life. Last summer, I had a garage sale. I spent two weeks picking up objects and saying – does this fit into my life? Is this really me?
That process is still going on, in every aspect of my life. I’m in the In-Between.
It’s a place of discomfort, for me, and at the same time, I think I’m starting to get the hang of it. I love where everything is going. I love how much more me I’m being. I love all the new in my life. And at the same time, I grieve what I’m releasing. I let myself feel sad when the living room couch leaves. I let it go. I let myself love the new chairs that took its place.
Now I see that thanks to the In-Between, I’ll know the right moment to start anew with the motherhood project. I’ll know what feels right to put on my website. I’ll know what feels right to create for my clients. I’ll know what feels right to add to my home.
I asked my soul how long the In-Between would last. It just smiled.