The fire crackled and the crickets sang.The drum beat and the flags lovingly placed ruffled in the wind.
Last night I had the beautiful privilege of attending a prayer flag raising ceremony with some friends. It was a celebration of a life passed on and an invitation to offer up prayers of peace and blessing.
My friend rejoiced in the kindness. Mourned the sadness. I stood, before the fire, in the juxtaposition of both, kindness and sadness, the flame of my own small candle flickering in the wind, wax pouring a small streams, spirit hushed.
She invited us to offer up our own joy and pain. To write down our own kindnesses and sorrows to place in the fire. An invitation to let go. To uncurl the clenched fists. To wipe clean the slate of sorrow. An outward expression of the inward re-creation. The tough work of being human, of moving on. Forgiving the self. Forgiving those who hurt you.
The words I’d written so swiftly across a yellow index card–charred and up in smoke in minutes, seconds.
The words that have taken a lifetime to brand themselves to me. A part of my identity. The false identity I choose to see. The lies I choose to cling to. Gone in a swirl of smoke into the night sky.
An outward expression of the inward healing.
The fire crackles and the crickets sing. How long will it take for the ashes to burn off my soul?