Susanne Freeborn
  • Female
  • Bellingham, WA
  • United States

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"The thought manifests as the word. The word manifests as the deed. The deed develops into habit, habit hardens into character. So watch the thought & its ways with care. Let thought spring from love, born out of concern for all beings." Buddha

"It is our duty - as men and women - to behave as though limits to our ability do not exist. We are co-creators of the Universe." Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

This is how I have learned to live to the best of my ability.
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Susanne Freeborn's Blog

The Uses of Sorrow, an Epiphany

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 3:00am 29 Comments

The Uses of Sorrow

(In my sleep I dreamed this poem)

Someone I loved once gave me

a box full of darkness.

It took me years to understand

that this, too, was a gift.

Mary Oliver

Thanks to Elaine Thierry for sharing this poem on Facebook.  It made me remember...

About 20 years ago I had an epiphany about what I had considered to be my "sordid past."  I had felt bad about how many men I had been with and had allowed self-righteous, judgmental people to shape my own opinion of myself.  I had acted as if what they had to say about me was true, rather than an opinion based on less than the full truth.  No woman wants to be thought of as slutty or easy.  Definitely not me.

I had recently gone through my third divorce and was planning on going to law school.  It was my decision to divorce a man that I loved because I realized that I was not going to be happy with my life if I considered it from the prospect of being eighty years old looking back on my life.  I knew that it meant I might be alone the rest of my life, and I still went ahead.  I didn't want fear of being alone to be why I did anything.

Sometimes, to be completely free, we have to give up what others think of us and recognize the nature of what we have actually done rather than allowing ourselves to be swayed by the self-righteous judgments others burden themselves with,  and then inflict upon us for their own reasons.  We don't have to believe or adopt their judgments and opinions of us.  We don't have to make what we have experienced mean more than the information we gleaned directly from the experience itself.  

We can never recognize the natural light within ourselves if…


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