Navigating the Space Between
- Written by Patty Shaw
Many great thinkers of our time (and this includes you) have indulged in the philosophy that when one door closes, another door opens. This is a very positive and hopeful idea, and quite true as well. There is always something waiting for you after the party is over.
Where I get tripped up is in the long, dark hallway between the doors. You know, the space between goodbye and hello. This can be a very frightening place to be when there is a pregnant pause before the light of the next door shows the way. It’s almost worse than the unknown of the next opportunity. Hanging out in this space with my doubts and fear is when I can lose my mind, panic, and run back to pound on the door that just closed, screaming, “Let me in!” I’ve done this so many times that I have created a way to calm myself down and make the most of the space between.
Here’s what I do after the creak and slam of the door to my past. First I breathe deeply and notice that I’m in a new place. Then I acknowledge what’s done is done and take another deep breath; the past has been documented and sent out to sea. Now I begin the waiting period and white-knuckle through my desire to panic. For some reason, giving in to panic helped me to think I was being proactive. Boy was I wrong.
While doing time in the space between, I have to keep calm and repeat my mantra: the darkness is an illusion. It’s telling me to rest my mind, be patient, and most of all this is a creative space. Since my security blanket is in doing something, I light a Blessed Herbal Vision Quest candle. Then it’s easier for me to reflect on the past, grieve my regrets and cherish the wins. I count my blessings for all that has happened. If ever there is an attitudinal game-changer, it’s being grateful for what has come to pass. I allow myself as much time as I need as long as I’m staying productive and not punishing myself. If I get stuck on something I talk it out with a friend or counselor. Many times I talk to Jacki. Next, I do what most people call planning (but I like to leave room for divine inspiration, so I call it fanaticizing. For me, the creative process is part organic and part structural and I never know how long it’s going to take. Long pauses in activity push me to thinking I’m lost or there is no other door. I’m always wrong about this, too. Lighting a Blessed Herbal Spiritual Cleansing candle clears all my negative thoughts while traveling the long, dark hall.
Finally, I pay attention to the cues that the next door is opening. Initially I assumed I would recognize the next door, but often I’m surprised by how foreign it is to me. Divine inspiration is like that sometimes. It often shows itself as something you would have never thought of on your own—and that’s the fun part. Some cues I’ve seen are: unexpected invitations to events I never knew existed; a chance meeting with a website or infomercial that connects some of the dots for me; a dream; a comment from anyone that gives my solar plexus a jump for joy; a book with a passage that seems to talk directly to me. I celebrate this opening with a Greenman World Magic candle so I can face my next adventure with courage and strength.
co-owner of Coventry Creations
Author, Teacher, Spiritual Counselor and Director of the School of Akashic Healing