Have you ever struggled with question of why doors close in our lives? Whether it be career, health, relationship issues, the same concepts apply: we struggle sometimes to steer a situation in the direction we think it should go, when it fact, what we might actually be doing is prolonging the gift of something much better that is waiting for us...If we have the courage to just let go.
Now, don't get me wrong, this doesn't apply to every person's unique circumstances. I can only really speak to my own experiences and those of the women around me who choose to share their stories with me.
One thing I have learned for sure is that doors are going to close sometimes, and I have to let them.
I've been letting a lot of things go these days, allowing those figurative (and sometimes actual) doors to close behind me as I leave behind what is not working.
It isn't easy. Sometimes it's pretty brutal, actually, but I will share one secret: As I get older (you know that with age comes wisdom, right?), and recognize the signs that I need to let go and move on sooner, it is easier than it used to be. I'll share something else that might make a difference next time you are struggling with your foot in the door - the rewards are much greater when you act sooner.
Or maybe I am just paying more attention these days.
Enter the concept of synchronicity.
I've always loved that word that describes those happy coincidences that carry meaning for the person who chooses to term it as such. Take yesterday, for example.
I think synchronicity actually teamed up with serendipity and walked through our door.
I was sitting in this lovely space, this perfect location at Brandywine Massage & Wellness, the one that now houses my little Soapery, surrounded by two lovely women I can both support and collaborate with who have welcomed me in.
I happened to be thinking about how a door opened for me to create a space in a way that felt just perfect, just last week in fact. A few doors had to close for this to happen, and this was also okay. I don't always understand why struggle often precedes a wonderful peace, but it does and it always teaches me something. I have to be okay with that.
The sun was streaming through the window and a massage was in session. The sign outside for 'Reiki Sessions Today' just went out as tea started to brew, and I had a minute to myself to listen to the water flowing over the rocks beside me and look at my 'to-do' list, until I wasn't looking at that any longer.
And then something caught my eye at our door. As this beautiful lady began to knock, the door opened right up for her. I gestered for her to come in and she walked through, looked around the space, took a deep breath and smiled at me. I smiled, too. It's like I was waiting for this visitor to arrive; I just didn't know who she would be.
"I feel better already..just being here," she said.
She asked for a Reiki Session right after that. I called Steph back from the tea area to talk to her about it, and that was when this lovely woman launched into her whirlwind of a story.
She was staying at the hotel next door as she and her husband prepared for a move down south because he was ill and she needed the support of her family now.
She shared their stories of his life as a diplomat and their travels around the world to over 72 countries, of their love for Longwood Gardens that always brought them back to this magical part of the country that just has 'good vibes.'
"Can you feel it, here?" she asked us. "Some places just carry that feeling and there aren't many like it on this earth." ----I could, actually. I knew what she meant.
She wanted a reiki healing session and also a massage, but she needed to do them on two different days because she couldn't leave her husband that long. Because he was at the hotel...and he had a terminal diagnosis. Her dear husband, 86-years-old, was, in fact, dying.
These two lovely people were retracing some steps, beginning with the Watergate Hotel where they first met in the early 70's, near where they later spent most of their married years...to a cathedral they loved, and ending at the Orchid House at Longwood Gardens.
"The show ends soon. You need to go."
Holly came out of her massage session just then and we met her in the Soapery where the woman stopped her story for a moment and said, "Well, isn't this beautiful. My husband just said the soap we are using is terrible."
And so, as she continued her story, she asked me to select some soaps for her...and a few for him, which is exactly what I did as I continued to soak up her magical story, one that even included a friendship with Richard Nixon. She was full of surprises.
Her story was one of those wonderful accounts that made me grateful for the opportunity to have met her at that exact moment in time, to witness her strength, to hear the love in her voice as she pictured her husband's face in her mind's eye, and to see it in the sparkle of her eyes as she spoke of him...to understand that there is so much to overcome in this life--for all of us--and that sometimes the struggle is necessary, and that it is also okay, because it comes with such utter joy of a life well lived.
When she left, I watched her walk out across the parking lot, her long coat trailing behind her, a small bag in her hand, on her slow journey back to her husband, back to the place where it all began for them, all rooted in history, friendship and love.
I had nearly forgotten that I had my own Reiki Session scheduled after that experience, which was the second in a series of delightful surprises on a Tuesday afternoon, but that's a story for another day.
I'll leave you with this: Be grateful for it all, even the hard things. Without my own, the beautiful lady would never have walked through the door and taught me about how beautiful, rich and rewarding life can really be, and she wouldn't have known such incredible beauty and intense love without experiencing her own pain. We all grow. Maybe she'll find this and read it. If so, I'll say thank you, D. for sharing your story. XOX.
Please come back for my reiki story, next.