Warning: this post is guaranteed to contain no funny comments whatsoever. So laugh with pity, if you must...
I think I have caught Pneumonia from my nephew, Captain Underpants. Or Bronchitis from my sister. Or something. Yes, I know that they live 4,000 miles away, but psychologically I'm there in sympathy.
Last night was almost the longest day of my existence, excluding the train journey I took from Agra to Chandigar, back in 1995. I was up at 5am and at the Kabbalah Centre for some mentor training at 6am, then after a day of seeking inspiration, I went back to the Kabbalah Centre for the New Moon of Aries at 8pm.
The next 12 days are important for making big changes for the year ahead and in identifying which parts of our Ego we need to break. Strangely enough, I knew exactly where my problems lay after a very strange moment at 5:05 am when I was about to step in the shower.
I have been living with excuses to protect myself for as long as I can remember and have always been good at identifying where I need to change and then procrastinating on making that change actually happen. Yesterday morning, as I was about to step in to the shower, I had an 'Aha!' moment. Except that it was not a pleasant 'Aha!' moment - I can only describe it as the kind of moment of insight I would receive when I am dying and my life is flashing unpleasantly before my eyes - all of the opportunities wasted, all of the people who lost out because I wasn't present, all of the people I could have helped but didn't because I was too afraid to step up to the plate and every good cosmic reason why my Dad starts every conversation in person, phone or email with the question 'have you got a job yet?'
And for the duration of the shower I was mortified - it hit me on such a deep level and for a while I wanted to cry with shame. It was a powerful awakening.
I remember reading one of the Kabbalah Daily Tune Ups where the question was begged: "How do we change?" and the answer that Yehuda Berg gave was "we look at our behaviour, and we get disgusted with it so that we cannot not change". And before now I had never really felt that level of disgust.
And so despite still having those feelings of fear, unworthiness and a childish need to be 'rescued' from my situation, I know that I do need to change. (And the Universe says 'Oh, finally you get the message, about bloody time too').
I left the Kabbalah Centre later than expected last night and caught the 11:25 train home. My eyelids were starting to droop, so I decided to keep myself by trying to finish the book I had brought with me, but as soon as I picked it up, I was interrupted by a rather inebriated man who staggered in through the nearest door, ricocheted off several vertical surfaces and then launched himself across the seat opposite and said "I'm sorry, I'm incredibly drunk, I can't keep up with your English drinking culture - guess where I'm from?"
It was an interesting train ride home, especially after I realised that a) he wasn't about to throw up and b) his inebriation had gifted him with the memory of a goldfish and therefore he was like a lamb to the slaughter as I changed my answers to his questions time and time again:
'What was your name again?'
Puzzled pause. Curious look which reads 'are you messing with my head?'
'Are you sure it is Sally? I'm reeeeaaaally sorry, but tonight I am a bit of a pisshead' (which is quite schweet when schaid in a Nor-weeegian accent).
He was quite an interesting chap, and he was very flattering too (beer goggles, gotta love 'em) but one thing he said really made me defensive and then made me wonder why. He said "It must be so nice being you. You are so gorgeous, it must be nice looking like you. *hic* You must have a wonderful life"
And initially I replied with a 'never judge a book by its cover' type remark, with a hurt feeling of "you have no idea what I have been through in my life" rising up and pricking the backs of my eyeballs.
...and then I thought: What a message to receive. If only I could be truly grateful for everything that I have. There is no reason why I couldn't be living a wonderful life. Right here, right now.
And so I start today. With the aid of Lemsip.