Sunday, April 20, 2014

Beyond Memories

Beyond memories and a disappearing act.  A very curious journey within journeys to share.

The day began with a simple adventure as the impetus for motion.  I had the day off and really wanted to see the beautiful Huntington Gardens in San Marino.  My partner in crime and I had breakfast as per usual on a wonderful day off and headed for the local drug store to pick up a memory chip and batteries for my camera.  Seems like a simple enough task right?  Well, I got into the car and my intuition told me to check the chip and make sure it worked in my camera.  I really wanted to take pictures as I often do when off on my little adventures so it was important to me to capture my memories.  I reached into the bag and pulled out the box the chip was contained in.  I opened it only to discover the chip was not there.  I bought an empty box.  I found that funny on one hand and frustrating on another.  Grateful that I followed my intuition, I grabbed the empty box and my receipt and walked back into the store.  I went back to the checker who had just taken care of my purchase and explained to him my plight.  Without argument he told me to just go grab another and he apologized for the incident.  I checked the box at the register this time to make sure what I purchased was in the box.  With both the checker and I satisfied I had the chip, I went out to the car and snapped a quick picture.  It worked.  We were off on the journey.

Interestingly I discovered the night before that the easiest route to our destination was up Route 19.  This route was one I was intimately familiar with as it ran right through my hometown.  I knew this road and so decided to take it all the way up.  It would be a longer route as it had more lights but my intuition guided me that this was the right route to take.  I found that curious as the night before I had experienced some shadow work.  In fact the post prior to this one was about a scene still well within 24 hours of the moment I began the journey we were currently on.  I’ll share with you that I don’t care for returning to my hometown.  All the people I loved who once lived there are now gone, moved on to the other side of the veil or out of state but there was something important in the journey and the memories they would bring.  Considering my work the night before, I drove.

The journey is the destination is true for me in more ways than one.  For the first time I drove through my hometown without wincing in pain.  I took it as confirmation that my work the night before had not been in vain and it had much deeper purpose than I realized.  A funny thing happens when you let intuition freely be your guide.  The explorations seem to bring about much deeper and infinitely more helpful meaning.  Today was no different passing through my hometown.  I recalled the joys and sorrows associated with the place and I imagined releasing the energy of my own emotion from that place even if I wasn’t feeling it emotionally.  Energetically I was and the weight was heavy.  I didn’t want to leave my hometown adding to the heaviness so as I passed through it I soaked it up, cleaned it up and let it go.

We arrived after a time near our destination and after a few turns, the chills ran up and down my spine, my skin and bounced seemingly between my head and my toes.  I had seen this neighborhood before and I knew it.  You may or may not believe me when I tell you what I recognized and to be honest, I’m not sure I believe anything at all anymore.  But I’ll share anyway just for fun.  When I was 24 years old I had a bit of a nightmare.  It sat me straight up in bed and haunted me relentlessly for weeks.  I wrote about it in my book Expanding Horizons.  It marked the beginning of an aware spiritual journey…simply meaning I began seeking answers on purpose and questioning everything I had previously taken for granted while sleep-living.  I’ll sum this up quickly in that while in the dream I inhabited another body at another time and was in a strange neighborhood.  I pulled into the driveway of a strange house.  In the dream, I peeked into the window to see my ex-husband’s uncle, father and mother watching television.  I knocked on the old screen door and his mother answered.  She told me I shouldn’t be there and I insisted as I had come for my daughter who had been taken from me wrongly and I intended to leave with her.  My ex-in laws were not mean but were not fully compassionate either for reasons I could not recollect.  All I knew as that time was of the essence, freedom was my goal along with the liberation of my child.

After a short time my ex-mother in law took pity on me and told me to hurry because Jack would be home soon from work.  She handed me my near two-year old daughter wrapped in a fuzzy yellow blanket.  Our eyes met and I knew she understood how much I loved my daughter and how I feared her son and with good reason.  From woman to woman she chose to help me right a wrong.  I ran down the steps, jumped into the car and screeched the car in reverse and then down the street.  It had turned stormy and the wind was blowing the blanket my daughter was wrapped up in.  The neighborhood looked like it was somewhere in Los Angeles County but 40 miles northeast of where I grew up in this life.  The year was 1963.  The dream ended with great fear and me standing on the brakes with everything in me to stop the car.  I couldn’t stop the car and we hit another head on in a place where the streets were at odd angles.  My neck broke due to the speed I was traveling, hitting the windshield with such force that it snapped.  I was immediately outside of my body and my child, while injured, was safe.  I watched the scene flow frame after frame and I saw Jack at the hospital with our daughter.  I was angry, so angry.  I just wanted to be free.  With such rage I crossed over into the Meadow and there I sat for the longest time in the sun.  I was soon joined by my guide Jacob whose presence brought me great peace and healing.

The version I’ve told is part memory and part discovery with help.  I’ve condensed it for the sake of my little story and journey with memories.  So, suffice it to say that I found the neighborhood where the accident took place.  So much had changed but some not at all.  I noticed the feeling, the shivers in my spine and understanding that we’re more than just what we think in this life.  I let the thoughts go and found our present destination.  The accident in the dream took place in 1963 when I was approximately 27 years old.  I was born in 1966 in this life.  I cannot help but wonder now if it was my own selfishness and rage that brought me right back.  I realized it didn’t really matter.  A part of me wanted confirmation and I got it at so many levels if I consider what I had experienced within the last 24 hours.  But the confirmation didn't stop there.

The gardens had me mesmerized for hours as my partner and I were carried away by the beautiful scent of roses, watching humming birds and blue jays play, listening to waterfalls while walking through mini bamboo jungles on perfectly maintained and angled pathways.  The bridges and colors, contrasts and completion of beauty had me feeling as if I was back in heaven, in the Meadow…that same feeling of peace stayed with me all day.  My partner and I took turns snapping pictures of each other.  For some reason, I recalled every picture he took, two by the fountain, one just outside a beautiful building, one near a jade pond, another just outside the Japanese gardens with my hand on the head of a lion statue.  I saw the shutter open and close because that’s how I know it is okay to move again.  I was fortunate to gather a great number of shots.  Well over a hundred did we take that day.  Finally tired from hill climbing, we decided to return home going back the same way but with a detour running yet again through the middle of my home town.

It’s a long drive when you decide to go 40 miles down city streets.  But the memories came again.  I saw new buildings and old buildings in my home town and on the main drag where I had worked, walked and explored as a young woman, I noticed something.  The stores were all gone.  The shells were left only with no life left in them.  It was nearly an entire block of nothing but closed stores.  Oh the memories flooded of a different time in this life when this street was busy teaming with life.  The being there and gone stuck with me as a thought and a feeling too.  I detached from it knowing that here time marches on, things change, things decline and then disappear.

We had driven on our journey near almost every single place I had ever lived in this life.  That was not the intent but that is how intuition had me play it out and I don’t regret it living a day of a beautiful journey with superimposed memories happening at the same time and then disappearing the moment we hit Pacific Coast Highway, the road that would take me to my current and most favorite home.  My partner and I spoke about the concept of home and how perhaps it never really is a place after all.  We live here and think that Heaven is home and maybe it is.  But what if it isn’t?  What if heaven is merely the heart of us as we live and breathe consciously or don’t live but are conscious?  Home is inside of us all which means Heaven or the concept of it is too.

We stopped and grabbed some fast food as I was craving root beer (a common indulgence that’s been with me since I was a little girl).  Waiting in line another memory returned, one of being on the other side and wanting to be here.  Why would I want to be here and where is here anyway?  If my memories had taught me anything at all on this journey today it is that my brain can’t really tell the difference between a memory in time, a dream or physical reality from a feeling standpoint.  All evoke feelings in just the same way.  Fantasy and reality or memories and dreams, they all evoke feeling.  I let the thought trail away as I grabbed our order and we made our way the final block home.

I grabbed my root beer and my camera.  I opened it up and grabbed the chip.  I wanted to see the pictures we had taken.  I went through all 132 of them and not one of me existed even though several were taken where I saw the shutter open and close.  Simple explanations abound but so do others.  A metaphor in a day lived in my memory of memories within memories, confounded or facilitated through time or at least one common faculty…my consciousness.  I found all of the feelings of the day intriguing.  I was not happy or sad but curious.  So many whys I had floating through my brain all day and now, this final message of me disappearing from a place I thought I should be.  A part of me understands and a part of me doesn’t.  Perhaps its just more confirmation.  In another meditation I suddenly recalled a beautiful woman who came to me.  When I asked her who she was, she spoke in Japanese and said she was my memories.  Kiyoku (sp?) was her name.  But there is a world beyond memories that I can’t comprehend and I cannot hold.  I can learn, however, to just be even more present as these feelings collide and I ponder what an interesting journey this has been.

© 2014 Jaie Hart (photo and words)  A fun fact is that this is one of the places my picture was taken, I saw the camera shutter open and close as I touched the statue and when we got home, not a single picture of me was on the chip.  "Curiouser and curiouser," to quote Alice.

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