Emergence (a prelude)

This post has been rattling around in my head for months now. It wants to come out, but it isn’t ready yet. Or is it that I’m not ready?

Anyway, here are a few notes — a beginning.


I have a deep sense that I am coming home to myself.

I was soul-sick for a while there. The months and years of being in the doctoral program, with such painstakingly slow progress, so much discomfort around that — it colored everything. Wherever I walked, in the world or in my own interior landscape, there was a shadow, at the edge of vision, whispering, Failure.

One might think, then, that letting go would have broken me. Finally failure. Really, finally, failure.

But that isn’t what’s happened.

I laid my burden down, I released it…and all that energy came back.


Free to be myself, in any way I choose. Free to drift and dream, to follow my fascinations, without the weight of something else I’m supposed to be doing.

How many times, in recent years, did I say, to myself or someone else, “Well, that would be a fabulous dream to pursue, but I can’t begin it until I finish this degree”?

How many blissful, flow-filled moments were muddied by the nagging sense that I should be doing something else?

It’s been a revelation, a revolution, a daisy chain of epiphanies, these past few months: there’s no reason I shouldn’t record my music. No reason I shouldn’t explore new directions in my work, in my business. No reason not to go outside and play. No reason not to write…whatever I want.

Oh, sure, I know that, just like Jacob Marley and Ebeneezer Scrooge, a lot of the chains I was wearing were of my own making. They were still chains. For whatever reason, they were there, and they were slowly squeezing the life out of me.

No more.

I’m back. I am here.

And I keep thinking about the relationship between emergence and emergency.


4 responses to “Emergence (a prelude)

  1. @Claire P — 🙂

  2. Beautiful!

    I am still in a doctoral program and so tired after four years of the weight of it (like that ring in that lord of the rings book)

    – and it’s starting to shift. I care less in some way. I just don’t have energy to feel it all the time. The end is near and I am anticipating by wanting things again. Something like that. A beautiful post!

  3. Kathleen, Congratulations on how well this is turning out for you. You didn’t let it keep you in thrall. Yay, you!

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