Undoubtedly Messy

A friend of mine just had a baby and described the stress of dealing with her little girl’s diaper blowouts in public. She said, “At some point, I just want to find a hose wherever I am, strip her soiled clothes off, and hose her down.”

When has your life been like a diaper blowout — you know, the kind that even reaches your hair?

Life is undoubtedly messy. Perhaps it’s not the diaper-blowout variety, but maybe it’s the cleaning-up-cat-barf-in-the-middle-of-the-night-after-you’ve-stepped-in-it variety or the papers-scattered-on-your-desk-and-you-can’t-find-anything variety or the circling-argument-of-doom-conversation-with-your-significant-other variety.  There are countless varieties. All are messy and all have the potential to help us grow.

Think of compost — our scraps of food waste and plant matter decomposing and then becoming rich, fertile soil!

What do I learn from stepping in cat barf? you might ask. To that, I say, perhaps you learn to live in the present moment or have more compassion for your cat, who can’t help but be 100% feline in both cuteness and grossness. Perhaps there is something else to learn there.

Try this:

Find something messy in your life and see the learning, growth, or potential in it.  What might spring forth from the messy papers on your desk? What kernel of truth is represented by that cluttered mess? What new growth might occur in the midst of a argument loop if you stopped to listen just a bit more and let your thoughts incubate? And what of messy emotions — feelings that make us drop to the floor in a snotty, tearful mess?  What might start to bloom in the midst of that moment, because of that moment, that will help us in our lives?


About Courtney Putnam

I first came to healing work through art and writing. Creating collage art and poetry in particular allowed me to deeply understand the benefit of self-expression in the healing process. But, I also began to see the benefit of bodywork (manual work in the form of massage and energywork in the form of Reiki) as keys to unlocking the emotional stresses we hold in our bodies. I became a Reiki practitioner in 2002, received an MFA in Creative Writing in 2003, received my massage license in the spring of 2006, and became a Reiki Master in 2010. In my practice I bring together these three areas -- the body, the mind, and the spirit (or energy body) -- so others may experience profound and positive change in their lives.
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