What would have been our 4th wedding anniversary has amounted to a most cathartic day taking care of business and in ceremony.  I just returned from the beach where I’d lit a small fire to incinerate remnants of a union that was not built to last.  Up in smoke went pictures, some in frames, along with a DVD containing images from the wedding.  Prior to the burning I said some words and with a flip of my wrist sent the titanium wedding band into a churning lake.  I had also deposited a surviving champagne glass from our 1st or perhaps 2nd wedding anniversary celebrated at a B&B well south of the city.  The innkeeper had gifted us the set, only to have one break a few short weeks thereafter, portending of a bond that too would shatter like glass.  Well I used to love her, but it’s all over now.

No question it’s been a heavy couple days pondering what has been and I strive to fully embrace what is now.  To compound matters I had myself all worked up about a re-assessment hearing with Department of Labor regarding extended unemployment insurance benefits.  Turned out to be a formality including a 30 minute video availing those in attendance of all the great resources at our disposal to develop a viable job search and score a gig, followed by sitting down with a career counselor to review work search history and a questionnaire.  Having honestly conducted a very passive job search in recent months my concern was that I’d be declared ineligible; however, quite to my surprise my career advisor, Mike, was quite impressed by what I’d recorded on the sheet of paper, thus concluding that I was obviously engaged in a job search and to keep doing what I’m doing.  We went on to shoot the breeze for at least another ten minutes as he shared with me his 30 year career in the entertainment industry as a stage hand for big acts like the Stones, Beach Boys and The Grateful Dead, as well as marketing director for a now defunct theatre.  He’d endured 2 years of unemployment before landing his current role with the DOL.  He was by all means an affable fellow and I was pleased to make his acquaintance.

So here I remain officially unemployed with another 20 weeks of benefits carrying me through to nearly the end of the year, at which point all extended benefits expire due to federal funding cuts.  The previous 26 weeks have flown by and I feel as though I’ve used my time wisely to explore my options while allowing myself space to heal and grow as I sort through the rubble.  I am becoming much better at feeling, which is a more realistic goal than feeling better all the time.  The confluence of a dissolved marriage and job loss has been utterly overwhelming at times; however, I have not allowed circumstances to conquer me, rather I have gazed inward to seek understanding as to how and why I created such an arduous experience for myself.  And I realize, in retrospect, that desperation had driven me forward into a marriage and job, only later to discover that inspiration is the road less traveled.  In other words, I was afraid of something happening- dying alone, going broke, looking like a failure- to drive my actions.  In the last half-year I’ve been practicing a new path that embraces all thoughts and feelings while tapping into the inspiration of fulfilling my mission, to inspire, educate and empower others.  I am being the change I wish to see in the world.

Following my appointment with the Department of Labor I migrated back to the parking ramp via Main Street downtown with a bustling farmer’s market where I purchased a bag of kettle corn and a pint of blueberries.  I made my way into the south side of the city to visit my dear friends Matt, Amy & Erin, and also to deliver a few more items- rain barrel, boxes of books and a peculiar upright shelf that Amy had expressed interest in last week.  We of course enjoyed candid conversation on the challenges of our lives over some nutritious snacks and confections, and also delved into discussion of a shared vision to acquire a tract of land upon which to build a community of like-minded friends.  I found the moment quite inspiring and departed feeling optimistic about the notion to move ahead with such a bold venture.  We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.

In common wealth,