Thursday, December 30, 2010

Is love safe?

As I review my year, I recognize that my challenges this last year have all been around the theme of love, which is clearly my central issue. I came across this posting I had made elsewhere and I bleed for the woman I was as I faced these questions about love. I had no idea the firestorm I was entering and the deep, gut wrenching anguish I would experience. Yet I am so much closer to true freedom, to an inner marriage, to the sense of love inside that is safe because it is myself. I awoke today afraid. My new challenge seems to be to face an inner emptiness and lack of clarity about what I am meant to be doing, to hold the new aspect of the wound with an open heart. Part of me wants to scream, "ENOUGH" and retreat into a cuddled ball. Another part of me is truly excited by the adventure and is totally jazzed to be playing the freedom game. I am allowing the discomfort to run down my spine, the coldness in my hands, the uncertainty as my mind races for answers. I feel deeply joined in this human dilemma, knowing we are all playing versions of this same game. I am embracing and cherishing myself as the emptiness gaps at my feet. Yet despite all the growth, all the courage I have shown, all the amazing discoveries, I still yearn for some one to embrace, adore, and cherish me, put their arms around me and whisper that they love me. This too is so human and so I whisper to you, "you are loved!!!!" May the new year brings us all ever closer to the absolute certainty of these words.

1/8/10 The universe has been kindly supporting me in uncovering my core issues lately. I have been observing and investigating what triggers me deeply and have rediscovered the core belief that love is not safe. It is very clear how I came to that belief as I experienced my father as a terrorist. While I feel free of this belief intellectually, my behavior shows me that emotionally I am still imprisoned by it. I finding writing and sharing brings me clarity and perhaps this question will speak to someone else.

Lately two incidents deeply triggered this belief. I perceived a love one as not caring about my feelings and needs. After the first incident, I clearly stated my feelings and needs, yet the behavior was repeated. While I had conversations to resolve it on the relational level, I am more interested in my reactivity which was not proportional to the situation. I found myself returning to a frozen state where my feelings become muted and dead. I felt the armoring return. Underneath I am discovering that old belief flying in full regalia. I know it is my perception that is hurting me yet my FEELINGS scream to me that I am right, that I am being hurt. I end up feeling like my old two year old self-she truly was powerless and at the affect of others; I am not. My question to myself and to the universe is perhaps more of an intention. I intend to finally free myself of this old wound that has cut me off from so much life and joy and deeply blocks me from my life's purpose to embody and extend love, to be a teacher and student of love. I send this into the ethers with the intention of freeing all of us from this belief. I see so many of us reacting when we perceived ourselves as unloved, perceive that no one cherishes us. I am learning not to belief that false perception, regardles of what my feelings tell me. Yet it is still a struggle. Below is something I wrote when the first incident occur. I welcome any comments. May all beings be happy. May all beings be free from suffering. May all beings know they are loved!

What it felt like Tuesday was that I had TO TRULY FACE the inadequacy and imperfection of human love. This is something I have been unable to truly be with until now. I think in many ways my whole life has been an avoidance of and a hiding from this fact. I think it is the reason of my weight, both physically and emotionally. I see how my parents' love was so harmful in so many ways, despite whatever their intentions may have been, I see that despite Herculean efforts my love for my daughter is still often not enough to stop me from harming her. I see the million ways I have caused my husband pain. I see how I have not been able to be available sometimes in my friendships. I see that now matter how much love I have to offer, no matter if I correct every "mistake" in my life -clean up, be organized, lose weight, be kind and generous, be thoughtful and considerate, use only ownership language, take personal responsibility, love myself etc., etc. from a genuine place of desiring the changes- I end up in the same painful place- where there is no guarantee, no certainty, no real protection from the fact that my love may not be treasured and cherished; that my needs, even if understood, may not be met. To truly face this without flinching, without turning away, without denying or hiding literally felt unbearable to me the other day. Today is another day and today I feel strong yet sad. Today I can hold that weight. Today I can embrace the knife and see it cut me deeply, see the fresh, red blood spurt, imagine that if it cuts deep enough it may, seemingly will cut me open to joy, to nonattachement, to freedom even to bliss and certainly to love. The pain and the joy and possibility of joy seem to be almost equally weighted. Some days one has the upper hand and I feel myself retreat. But then again and again, I find there is nowhere to hide. And yet, and yet and yet-what choice is there. Again and again I have considered true retreat from this arena of human pain. Unfortunately (not really) I am not the solitary type and I see for me it would hold an emptiness that would be genuinely unbearable. I see again and again that my true treasures always lay with love. I see that I must commit, again and again to allowing myself to profoundly experience the joy and sorrow and that for now they go hand in hand. I see that the pain I am experiencing on this journey is MY pain - I see that it is the way to break open. I stand naked in front of the truth-there are no guarantees love is returned no matter what I do including back flips, I see that even if that love is returned, there will always be gaps of misunderstanding or needs at cross purposes, I see that even if that love is returned and the gaps are few, one day one of the Beloveds must die. To stand rooted to the ground as that truth howls around me with gale force winds, to let the tears flow as they appear, to hold, to hold, to hold without looking away is perhaps to open to something not yet seen but perhaps, heard, perhaps heard in the sound of trickling stream and the croak of a frog. Perhaps heard in the joyous laughter of friendship; perhaps touched by a gentle breeze, perhaps rooted in the hug of the beloved child, perhaps held by a weekly cappuccino cup, perhaps a word from someone who knows, perhaps, perhaps, perhaps ... .......

As I read these words now I know the truth that human love can never hold me, that it is only my True self, the Self tied to Universal flow that is encompassing enough to create the vastness I need to live life in love, joy and freedom. May we all find that place within and life the lives of our destiny!!! with love savannah

Monday, December 27, 2010


I woke up today feeling empty and disconnected. After much holiday activity, a number of days loomed with no plans. I felt disconnected and afraid. My mind immediately began to search, to try to find a SOLUTION! If I called this person, went to this place, spoke to so and so... I then grasped my Way of Mastery which tells me over and over again that there is no solution outside myself, no answer in the world.  I spent the last year letting go of attachment and desire and used Herculean efforts not to be attached to my ideas of how Christmas should unfold. Since this has been a major trigger much of my life, the only time I perceived myself during childhood as loved, I was grateful when Christmas passed without incident. Yet, while I did not become reactive I also did not enjoy it. I was just neutral in a way that feels similar to dead. So I've moved from one pole to the other- from attachment with enjoyment and drama to detachment with emptiness. But what the heck, I had no other ideas so I followed what I read in my book and made no plans for myself, just agreed to show up for what arose within. I ended up having a very meaningful conversation and I felt good again. Yet a little while later I felt overwhelmed and wanting to be left alone when someone else was wanting to connect to me. Ah, these delicate and contrary creatures, we humans.  Feelings arise and pass away so quickly. I am still left with emptiness and uncertainty, yet it is less. The drama and intensity seem to have been slightly mitigated. So what can I do but allow it all- the emptiness, the connection, the joy, the anger, the sense of separation. Fighting the separation always seems to link me closer to it, a little tar baby. The sun is no longer shining, so I allow the cold.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

spinning the joy thread

This poem inspired me to form a powerful intention to declare myself for joy about five years ago. I lost track of it and someone just forwarded it to me. Let's ALL DECLARE OURSELVES FOR JOY!!!!! What a perfect poem for the solstice.

The poem is Testament (Or Homage to Walt Whitman) by Erica Jong.

     I, Erica Jong, in the midst of my life,
     having had two parents, two sisters,
     two husbands, two books of poems
     & three decades of pain,

     having cried for those that did not love me
     & those who loved me- but not enough
     & those whom I did not love-
     declare myself now for joy
     There is pain enough to nourish us everywhere;
        it is joy that is scarce...

     Unhappiness is cheap,
          Childhood is a universal affliction.
          I say to hell with the analysts of minus & plus
          the life-shrinkers, the diminishers of joy.

     I say to hell with anyone
          who would suck on misery
          like a pacifier
          in a toothless mouth.
          I say to hell with gloom...

     Doom is cheap
          If the apocalypse is coming,
          let us wait for it in joy...

     I resolve myself for joy.

     If that resolve means I must live alone,
          I accept aloneness.

     If the joy house I inhabit must be
          a house of my own making,
          I accept that making...

     No joy-denyer can deny me now.
          For what I have is undeniable.
          I inhabit my own house,
          the house of joy...

     The soul is contagious.
          One man catches another's
          like the plague;
          & and we are all patient spiders
          to each other.

     If we can spin the joy thread
          & also catch it-

     If we can be sufficient to ourselves,
          we need fear no entangling webs...

     How to spin joy out of an empty heart?
     The joy-egg germinates even in despair.

     Orgasms of gloom convulse the world;
          & and the joy-seekers huddle together.

     We meet on the pages of books & by beachwood fires,
     We meet scrawled blackly in many-folded letters.
     We know each other by free & generous hands,
     We swing like spiders on each other's souls.

Reading this inspired me to further my intention to declare myself for love, for joy, for self acceptance. I invite you to join me and pass it on.

     I, Savannah Hanson, in the midst of my life,
          having two parents, two siblings,
          one husband, one child, three careers,
          & four decades of pain.
          Having cried and despaired for those who did not love me
          & those who loved me-but not enough
          & those who I loved-but not enough
          & those whom I did not love-declare myself for JOY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ending the chain


With the return of the light, it is my deepest desire to end the chain of pain that jumps generation to generation. Let it stop here. Let it stop now.

for over a decade
the daughter perches on the right edge
of her mahogany chair
leaning impossibly toward her sister
away from her father’s throne
her father’s voice
shards of glass
sonic boom
crashing plates  
on the polished hardwood floor
her fork shakes
three witnesses say nothing
never mention her angled tilt
now her daughter’s voice
chanting the crimes of her BLT
“tomatoes cut too large
daddy cuts them thinner
I hate lettuce
the bacon is burnt
its too fat”
the mother no voice
her hand snakes out
crashing plate
on the grouted white tiles of the counter
the daughter jumps up 
pell mell down the stairs 
the next morning
sitting on the king size bed
under the headboard’s carved golden star 
offer each other the plumpest pillow
look out onto the sunny green hills
her green clay gnome with its purple hat
broken in half
tilted shoulders touching
they put him together again

Sunday, December 19, 2010


Yesterday I got caught in a firestorm that still has me reeling. I feel incinerated by the force of the monsters lurking inside me and threatening to take me DOWN. I still have a pit in my stomach that wont let go. Since these darling monster seem to be almost  always triggered by an event outside of me, my finger immediately want to point to someone, anyone and blame them. Since I have felt the force of the blame coming toward me from someone else and know how incredibly wounding that is, I am committed to stop projecting. But right now the wind is howling, the rain is slashing and I feel weak and frightened. These forces feel so powerful that I seem to be at their mercy. My prayers, rituals, hopes, and dreams mere wisp of smoke. I sure hope there is some force greater then what I am feeling that I can connect to because right now I feel like toast. The fact that I have so recently experienced such freedom, such joy somehow almost makes it worse. I want my Mommy, a Mommy I never had, someone to come and cuddle with me, whispering sweet endearments, assuring me I am loved and that the monsters aren't real and that everything will be alright.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


I’m like a bulldog on a pork chop tracking how it is I never truly had my relationship with myself as my top priority. My love-o-meter was always tuned to the outside, checking my emotional health by checking to see how much someone else loved me. Now, I was “spiritual” enough to spout the self love talk but did it really sink in? Me thinks not. In 1987 my New Year’s intention was to change my life. From that point on here’s what I have tried in my attempts to learn to love myself: diets of all kinds, one hospitalization, two world trips and two ten day silent retreats, numerous workshops, therapy, a degree in spiritual and counseling psychology and licensing as a Marriage and Family Therapist, a specialty training in Consciousness, Health and Healing, Certification in Cellular Memory Release, intense study of A Course in Miracles and A Way of Mastery, teaching a class called “Self Love is not for Wimps!”, etc. You get the picture. And yet the truth is my meter was still link to other, other du jour, any other, other to save my but from the dreaded aloneness. Yet two weeks ago I finally passed a threshold and moved into new territory. 
In this new territory the floor does not drop out as it did before. But as soon as upset does cross my doorstep, I almost always remember to check inside. Previously, I would be trying to get other to be fine so that I would feel safe. I would be scanning the environment, the energy field of other to see what adjustments I needed to make so that somebody else would continue to fill my void. Now when my energy plummets, I check inside and see what I need. I reassure myself. I see what my authentic response is, if any. When other was my savior, I realize I would say and do things that weren’t really what I wanted. Over the years, the level of falseness has diminished considerably yet there was still a faint residue. Now my love-o-meter is scanning for separation within ME not scanning outside to get my environment to meet my needs.
I realize it is common to see ourselves as anchored in another. First my mother was my anchor and of course that is natural as a child. Yet so many of us had countless critical needs unmeet in childhood and begin to seek resolution, often rather frantically, outside ourselves. In college my great love broke up with me for the umteenth time. So, of course, I did what anyone would do, I ran out into a vicious storm to the rock barrier of Lake Michigan and dramatically considered throwing myself in so HE would be sorry. Over time the drama lessened a bit but the emptiness was still unmet. So, for now, it is a slow crawl toward greater self love and acceptance, greater connection to Source energy. Am I there yet? Not quite but more and more light peeks out at the end of that long tunnel. I am beginning to feel a great sense of ground whatever life throws at me. Dare I say it, I really am beginning to accept this darling, flawed, dramatic, loving, sad, gorgeous, confused being and to love her unconditionally. From that foundation, everything else begins to come into alignment. Joy peeks out from under the covers. And the BIG love shows up more and more, the love that comes from a genuine soil.  Sometimes a feeling of love pulses out of me in waves of sunlight. And when it doesn’t, when the goo mixes with the poo, that’s O.K. too. That’s the time when my love-o-meter turns itself to full blast and baths me in that yummy blanket of care. At least, much of the time. And from there it is easy to “catch the world in a love embrace.” We are indeed born to be wild and free.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

who's the boss?

O.K. the bliss trip was SO fun! It lasted several days and what a ride!!!! YUMMY!!! But, big surprise, I started sliding yesterday and as my feeling of trying to recapture the bliss intensified, I accelerated quickly into crash and burn. So being the keen observer of human behavior I am, I couldn't help but notice something. I am a slave often to two things- my bodily reactions and the negative emotions that surround intense emotional/physical discomfort. So often I follow the momentum of egoic consciousness into the toilet. Well, after a night of little sleep, I woke up groggy, unhappy and just plain disgruntled. The thoughts kicked in as my mind began to plan a miserable day ahead. Luckily the gods decided to intervene with a rosy sunrise. I got caught in the clouds enough to rise above my own misery to try an experiment. I systematically shifted my thoughts and decided to stop the downslide. I started imagining I was going to have a fabulous day and wondering what miracles might await me. I bestowed boons of hugs and kisses on anyone fortunate enough to cross my path. I beamed love over the ocean. I drank a very hot coffee and got on with it. And guess what, I am now sitting on my deck again, in the sun, having a gorgeous day. Want to join me?

Monday, December 6, 2010


I am sitting on my deck admiring the glimmer of raindrops on trees. In my body I am experiencing the most incredible peace and sense of expansion. I feel so much gratitude (and bloody relief) that I wanted to share some good news. I recently experienced a particularly challenging passage. Yet I read my last post and can barely remember who wrote it. The marriage to my self is finally truly sticking and is now my authentic priority. So much awareness is flooding in about how, in the past, my anchors were always within someone else. Then when that someone, who ever I had assigned the role to, stopped filling my emptiness, I would blast them, manipulate, dance, scream, trying to get them to keep filling me up. Yikees! Life gave me the opportunity to face one of my deepest fears. The shock of that blasted me into this new awareness, this new commitment to my relationship to myself. I wouldn't wish the pain I experienced facing that fear on anyone- except me. Apparently I need that level of pressure to "get it." So I say Yes! For now, it is my embodied experience, at least for today, that I am the one I have been yearning for. More later, for now I want to bask in my own company.