Our group met at one of Sibyl’s friend’s house to perform our private ritual of celebrating the Day of the Dead. We had a lovely breakfast which included Day of the Dead bread which is made only around the time of these festivities and can be bought at most any bakery in town.
Afterwards we took two flights of stairs leading to a partially covered rooftop patio. We sat under the covered area where the only wall supporting the roof was painted turquoise blue and decorated with “milagros,” which are religious folk charms that are traditionally used for healing purposes and as votive offerings in Mexico. We lit a small fire in a pot placed on a coffee table cut from a slice of a tree and we formed a sacred circle around it. Then we went around the circle letting each of us verbalize what of our past we were willing to let die and what we wanted to birth. Finally we burnt papers which we had written what we were willing to let die in the fire.
El Dia De Los Muertos (see previous article) gave me an opportunity to look at my past and honor it for who I have been. But it also gave me an opportunity to clear out the clutter of my fears, my angers, my limitations, my pains and my Shame that were holding me back from stepping into a new, never-been-done-before future.
A lot of times like the “Catrinas,” (see previous article) we are ashamed of who we are, so we wear these painted masks pretending to be somebody else. But you see, many times, it is within our darkness that we hide the light of our powers and our strengths. And because the “gems” of who we are, are held in our past, we are wise enough to know that we cannot let go of it until we extract them. And how do you do that, you may ask? My entire book is dedicated to teaching you ways in which you can take your power back.
It’s about weeding out by healing what in our past doesn’t serve us anymore while discovering and recovering those hidden gems. Once we have extracted them, we can let go of the past. And when those pasts are mourned and forgiven, it’s about seeding new futures that will reflect who we are becoming.
The gem that I discovered within the pain of my loss was the depth of my love. You see, love’s fear is the fear of loss, and love’s pain is the pain of separation. I didn’t know the depth to which I loved, especially for my father. When my father died, I realized, “I am really afraid of losing love.” But I also realized that if I am this afraid, then the love that is there behind that fear must be pretty immense. Because you see, when your love is very deep, you have so much more to lose; therefore, the intensity of your fear and the intensity of your pain is so much greater.
There are people who are afraid to love because they are afraid to lose, or even more sadly, there are people who have loved and lost and have decided never to love again because the pain of separation and the fear of losing was too much.
When you do not love out of fear of loss, it does not make the fear go away or makes the pain any less. It just makes you a fearful, pain-filled lonely person. And it would seem obvious that if you love, then you risk the chance of losing—and you do, but the irony is, that when you go through the fear and into the love–even though the fear of loss does not totally go away, the intensity of the fear will come into balance and you get to experience the very thing that you want, which is the love.
I have chosen to go beyond the fear and beyond the pain to love even more. And my two new dogs that I have recently rescued, Bella and Boo, they are helping me to do just that because I prefer to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all.
So, ARE YOU READY…. to give up the past that doesn’t serve you anymore, and to retrieve the treasure so that you can become a more authentic you? I would love to hear about some of the gems of yourself that you have recovered. Please feel free to share.
The following are pictures of some of the wonderful people that I shared this memorable trip with:
(Click on the pictures to reveal a manual slideshow)