It seems just recently that I have crossed over some invisible bridge of aging. No one really tells you that it is coming or when you will feel it, then one day it just happens. I look around and realize that the cafe is filled with 20 year olds planning their eco-fermenting businesses. The new veterinarian and orthodontist are about 28 years old. A whole new generation of professionals are coming up and the bulk of the baby boomers are retiring. I am not really old but all of sudden it feels that I am not young anymore.

In one way this feels like a relief. Some of the competitive challenges of youth are fading. No longer do I feel not pretty enough or not smart enough. I have a enough life experience to not really pay attention to those whimsical thoughts. I know that there are good and bad attributes within everyone. In the past I had driven myself pretty hard to be successful enough and even that game is losing its lackluster. Working hard is rewarding, there is great satisfaction to be gained from practicing and developing a craft. But working all the time takes its physical toll and gets monotonous. There are always more advanced practitioners to look up to, so the development of the skill is a life long effort. Does not seem like there is now much of a need to rush things, might as well settle in and enjoy the ride.

I have noticed that I feel regret when I think back on my earlier years. Regret for not having not pursued more dreams or been more adventurous and for the bad decisions made. I have a strong comprehension of how the folly of youth serves to protect us from some of the more frightening components of life. Once there are children and marriage, career and house ownership, parents declining, the situations can become alarming.

I think one of the most terrifying things that I have recently really had to reckon with is that there is no one way to do anything. Everything has its gray area and its paradoxes. The better that I get at my field of practice the more that I comprehend that it is really a way of being not just a craft. This took years to absorb and one of the biggest stumbling blocks that I now face is how to contend with the subject of fraud. I am a healer yet my life and the people in it need healing.
There is nothing that will develop a more humble approach to living then to be wounded and a healer simultaneously.

The whole culture that surrounds us, tells us this is not acceptable. It tells us that there are certain ways to act and feel and that we are supposed to be one way. Even the social models that reject the mainstream are still following this very same pattern just with a different label. To find a way of existing that is authentic is challenging. This person may be viewed as totally insane by the public or lose their grip on reality in the process.

There are no guidelines to lead us down this road. There are partial directions, personal stories of others, and myths or fables but this is an inward descent. It takes your own fortitude to travel in this direction. We have to keep moving even when the compass is busted and there are no sign posts. There will be moments of total hopelessness and then total surrender. We have to to break with illusion that we have control over the events in our lives.

This is when the heart space can open and we may connect. We can communicate with others and with nature from a genuine place. We learn to love the broken with the flaws and the gruesome disfigurements.
This is the most full expression of aging with all its glory. This is not a path for everyone. This is the road for the spiritual seeker, the misfit, the one that hovers on the peripheral edge. This process is beyond spiritual and religious frameworks, it is in the inner space that this work transpires. Nothing outside of the self can take responsibility for it, we work with our karma alone and unaided. The point of reckoning happens when you look at your own monster in the eye and surrender to transformation. Walk over the invisible bridge…

Post by Jipala

Jipala R. Kagan is a healer and a writer. She is a New York State Licensed Acupuncturist and a NCCAOM Diplomat. Her work emphasizes Emotional/Spiritual Acupuncture, Trauma Recovery and Muscular-skeletal Relief. She has a working knowledge of Western Herbology, Homeopathic Medicine, Nutritional Supplements, Dietary, Lifestyle and Energetic counseling.