#26 ~ devotion
I didn’t have to search for it. My word for the year just came to me, and with it, a host of lovely synonyms in its wake. Devotion. Well, devotion––minus the religious connotations––holding hands with dedication, fealty, loyalty, commitment, fortitude and constancy.
In the past I have labored over what it might be for me, that word that embodies all I want to do with my intentions in the year ahead. But this year, it came floating to me like an errant leaf, late falling on a winter’s breeze. It resonated deep within and because it came with an entourage I felt like a farmer with acres and acres of fertile, unblemished land spread before me all waiting for me to plant an endless bounty.
So I start my new cycle, this new year, with the sowing of seeds of intention, digging deeply into this dark, rich soil. It begins with a renewed Devotion and dedication to loving. To magic. And to beauty.
And writing – something I failed so miserably at conjuring last year. A block is no joke, it is a deep, dark hole that any creative soul can fall into and in my case is called ‘writer’s block’, and it is real. And it sucks. I banish it now with a loyalty to work, those further and continual efforts to paint with words from a palette-full of color.
And then there is Fealty. A deep and resonant fealty to my love/partner/mate, to family and those dear ones who love me as I am whether broken or whole; to those who love the animals and celebrate empathy, truth and compassion; to those who will be happy for me when I succeed, and cry with me in my sadness, who try to pick me up when I fall, and push me hard to continue to explore the vast continents of my interior and to walk onward along the path to becoming the best I can possibly be.
Those beloveds who allow me, in all of that vulnerability, to do the same for them.
Loyalty. Loyalty to my path. And to the greater good. To honesty, integrity, goodness, caring, loving––to kindness and empathy, to staying awake with eyes and ears and heart attentive to the big world around us, to laughter, to weeping buckets when I’m overflowing, to connection, to speaking up and speaking out (loudly!), to celebrating beauty and color, and to a nurturance of the evolution of soul and spirit, my own and that of others.
Commitment. To continuing to wield light, through music.
Commitment to seeing the glass half full.
And to the voiceless ones, who really are my reason for being. The animals. Commitment to doing what I can to ease the burden of suffering for those in need of compassion and caring, of rescue and respite.
Commitment to honoring those others who continue to do the hard and mostly thankless work attending to the emergent needs of those barely surviving untenable lives in the shadows; those caring for the pets of the homeless, animals who act as angels for the people of the streets whose only tether left to any comfort in this life is a beloved dog or cat companion; those pulling the newborn kits and pups from garbage bins, or flimsy boxes set in the cold rain along busy streets, those rescuing dogs from a brutal existence of abuse, abandonment, fighting, life at the end of a cold chain; those earthly angels whose hearts have been broken over and over again yet they continue on, continue giving, helping, trying to make a better life and a better world for those left behind. (I have always held that, were humans to collectively realize that the other beings we share this glowing, gorgeous orb with––the animals, the trees, the waters, the land––all require and deserve our recognition, our action, our honor and caring, then the world’s ills would resolve. And so it goes…)
Fortitude. The fortitude to walk my path ahead in constancy, through dark and light with no time or inclination to curl into a ball and sink to the bottom of the well. Life now is too short for that.
Dedication, fealty, loyalty, commitment, fortitude… in action, together they reduce down and distill to a fine and pure constancy of devotion.
I am good with that! Right?
Do you have a ‘word for the year’? If so, do try to hold it close, in honor of its gift. When 2016 comes to pass, I would love to hear what your word was and how it served you. Or, how you served it.
Spreading my wings now… With love and light, and hopes that your year ahead is graced by all that is good,
all photos ©EleanoreMacDonald except for those taken by Paul Kamm.