Winging It, Episode 94 of Turning Towards Life
What would happen if we understood that we’re all making it up, and that nobody really knows what’s going on? A conversation about facing the messy realities of human life, and about learning we’re not alone, with Lizzie Winn and Justin Wise of Thirdspace.
Here’s Episode 94 of Turning Towards Life, a weekly live 30 minute conversation hosted by Thirdspace in which Justin Wise and Lizzie Winn dive deep into big questions of human living. Find us on FaceBook to watch live and join in the lively conversation on this episode. We’re also on YouTube, and as a podcast on Apple, Google and Spotify
We easily make two big mistakes in making sense of our lives, mistakes which add to whatever difficulties we already find ourselves in. The first is to imagine that everyone else ‘has it to together’ while it is only I who is muddling through a messy, unpredictable, and deeply mysterious existence. The second is related to the first. It’s when we secretly hope that we’ll be saved from the mess and confusions – by a magical happening, a saviour, winning the lottery etc. Both of these mistakes have us turn from our lives and from each other. But what if we were to find out that this is just the way that life is? And what if we were to welcome, then, the inevitable and surprising transformations that come upon us in the course of a human life, without trying to make them go away?
Join us for a conversation about winging it, owning up to what it is to be human, and finding out we’re not alone, which begins with Leza Lowitz’s beautiful poem ‘Waiting’.
Waiting, by Leza Lowitzby Leza Lowitz
You keep waiting for something to happen,
the thing that lifts you out of yourself,
catapults you into doing all the things you’ve put off
the great things you’re meant to do in your life,
but somehow never quite get to.
You keep waiting for the planets to shift
the new moon to bring news,
the universe to align, something to give.
Meanwhile, the pile of papers, the laundry, the dishes the job —
it all stacks up while you keep hoping
for some miracle to blast down upon you,
scattering the piles to the winds.
Sometimes you lie in bed, terrified of your life.
Sometimes you laugh at the privilege of waking.
But all the while, life goes on in its messy way.
And then you turn forty. Or fifty. Or sixty…
and some part of you realizes you are not alone
and you find signs of this in the animal kingdom —
when a snake sheds its skin its eyes glaze over,
it slinks under a rock, not wanting to be touched,
and when caterpillar turns to butterfly
if the pupa is brushed, it will die —
and when the bird taps its beak hungrily against the egg
it’s because the thing is too small, too small,
and it needs to break out.
And midlife walks you into that wisdom
that this is what transformation looks like —
the mess of it, the tapping at the walls of your life,
the yearning and writhing and pushing,
until one day, one day
you emerge from the wreck
embracing both the immense dawn
and the dusk of the body,
just as you are.