It was time. When it happened I just knew.
Not the beginning. And not the end. But important for me. For moving. For continuing. For freeing myself from what I’ve carried. Not all of it, but a good start. And maybe somethings for you. To help you too become free.
It happened during a mid-August week. I knew that week was going to be significant, but not what would or would not happen. It didn’t disappoint. I had created a week away from the regular part of my life to explore and work at understanding myself better and how I connected with others in my life. This came after three years of continued exploration and self-examination that started in the summer of 2014. During this time I moved from being an asleep, left-brained, mainstream, closet atheist to a spiritually aligned soul who largely understands and accepts my purpose in life. Good progress over this time but with recognition that it is only baby steps in the bigger scheme of the Universe. Recognition that there is so much that I don’t know. And that’s ok not knowing. I’ll learn when the time is right.
It happened on an island, towards the end of my week away. I had gone on an evening sail with a small group of other tourists, watch the sunset and all that. It was a warm, beautiful location and the day was delightful. As we sailed along the coast the guy running the boat asked us if we’d like to see a blue hole. Unanimously, yes! He said the sea was calm enough that we could do it. Often the sea was a bit rougher and the waves made it too dangerous to get where we needed to be without getting pushed up onto the rocks.
He eased the boat near the shore, maybe 100 yards from a sheer rock face. He pointed out to us the entrance to swim to and that from there we could clamber over the rocks into the cave and the blue hole. He also pointed out a couple of swimmers in masks and fins who had just emerged and said they looked to have gone underwater through a hidden exit. Some caution about that as only one of us had a mask, and no one had fins. Be careful he warned.
I dove off the back of the boat and slid into the the open ocean. The water was perfect. Refreshing, not cold. Salt on my lips and tasting it. I had been many years since I’d been swimming in the open ocean and on this trip it had already happened several times. I was remembering the feel of it. The energy from it. Grounding and exhilarating all at once. Feeling at peace afterwards.
Six of us in our group swam to the mouth of the cave. When we got there it was necessary to climb up onto some rocks to make it over them. This was the tricky part that had been pointed out to us. Even with the water relatively calm it was still a challenge with the waves pushing and pulling you to find a foothold and get yourself raised up before being pushed by the waves across the rocks. I was slow at this. Deliberate. Cautious. But I made it. Others were more agile and I recalled those earlier days of my life before that level of nimbleness passed. Or maybe it was just my practiced deliberation and caution developed over my life that was in control and in fact I could be more nimble if I had the confidence. Those thoughts hurried through my head as I picked my way over the rocks.
And then I was at a place I could dive back into the calm waters inside the cave. As I slid back into the water I felt myself returning to my element. Floating. Free. Unencumbered. I swam into the cave a bit and could see the roof of the cave coming down almost to the surface of the water. But not quite. Swimming further past the low part of the ceiling the cave opened back up again and was bathed in a glorious blue light. The underwater opening out to the ocean was funneling the light from the setting sun into the cave and it was the most incredibly vibrant blue I had seen. Magical. Stunningly powerful.
There was more. Another area opened up from the cave of illumination and I swam out into a large circular pool that was open to the evening sky. It was magnificent. Alone and isolated yet connected to the fullness of the sky, to the universe. Perfect.
Some of the group had paused in the initial part of the cave, uncertain about swimming under the low ceiling. I swam back and encouraged them and showed them they could do. And they did. As they swam out into the sky-filled pool we were all laughing and splashing and being ourselves. An hour ago we had never met and now we were all best of friends and talking and sharing a beautiful experience. Being real with each other. The facades of life had faded as we swam into the cave. And our true selves started emerging in the magical sky pool.
Then it was time to head back. I knew what I was going to do. I had known it the instant I saw it. I wasn’t afraid and knew I could do it. I had to do it. I had to swim to the light. I had to finish releasing so much I had shaken loose over the past years since my childhood, over the past three years of exploration and growth, over the past week. I was offered the opportunity to choose to be free. To remember and come back to myself. The answer was yes.
I pushed under the water to take a look and set my path. Then back up for a breath and told the group I was going and would see them when they got to the boat. Then down. Powerful, easy strokes to make it out under the wall. Into the light. Into the beautiful, cleansing light shining down through the ocean that encompassed me. More strokes to get further away so as to not be pushed by the waves back into the rock face. Breath was not an issue, plenty of air, easy. Even in the salt water I could see fine, it was not burning my eyes. Then turning upwards and pulling for the surface. Breaking through, refilling myself, clean.
I scarcely remember the swim back to the boat. Just full of peace. Still.
And when I stumble and let things get hectic, I can always go there at anytime, from anyplace. And swim to the light.
This is the start of more sharing of myself. Ideas, meaning, musing, humor, challenges faced. Maybe there is something you’ll find here that will be of help to you or others you love. You matter. We matter to each other. We are all connected and touch each other in ways we oft don’t appreciate. What will I explore? It will evolve as things do. Perhaps starting with self exploration and growth, changes in our world, the work of artists and how they can impact how we view ourselves and our world, consciousness, things of a blockchain nature and the changes it is bringing to our world. In short, this will be about changes. About finding ourselves. As we swim to the light.