Life transitions are like a bag of Divine mixed Hershey chocolate bars – some of those moments are so snap, crackle, poppin’ awesomesauce, you keep reaching for more, while others are crunchy, bumpy adventurously delicious, and still others are so bittersweet we dream of only taking small bites saving the rest for later, much, much later.
While we may desire, even blindly hoping, that as we reach for the next experience we will get the sweetest variety in the bag, many times we will end up with the bitter sweetness of the moment inviting us to embrace all the bitter sweets we reluctantly passed over in search for the next chocolate nectar. And, there are times when there is no invitation at all; it’s just there, the bitter sweetness waiting for us to accept the transition or melt away right with the last bit of snap, crackle, poppin’ awesomesauce left lingering on our hands.
I suppose that’s the way Tea Love felt as Bacon Little turned double digits, from 9 to the big 1-0. She had been preparing his life for this big moment since he was born – to become this independent, curious, and friend-loving being. But, when it started happening, ya know, the big break away there was a certain acceptance staring at her in the face or a melting away that could suck her joy away. With great hesitation and many tears, she reached her hand for what felt like the biggest darkest bitterest sweet chocolate she had to ever eat in one sitting.
“You can’t go play with your friends, unless you eat something. I mean you have to eat something!”, Tea Love very vocally and emotionally sang-twisted-yelped and then fell flat on her face with all her right listening and speaking this and that as Bacon Little hurt and offended shouted back, “You’re mean! I’m not hungry. I just want to play with my friends!”
Ouch. Triple back flip with a back hand stroke ouch. “He doesn’t need me anymore”, Tea Love repeated on to herself figuring if she said it enough she could make her own podcast about the chocolate bitter abyss, a transition that’s worth the miss. It was a pain right to the middle of her heart. All she could muster in the moment after a deep breath or two was an eye-to-eye to Bacon Little expressing her adventure through this new life transition and hugging him, loving him, but now only a little because it was time for him to leave, to break away, to go to that far away place to just play with his friends. Alone. And, without her.
Tea Love felt she needed to resource a little bit and started thinking about how Bacon Little still was delighted they read Rick Riordan’s Greek Heroes and Gods together at bedtime, he still held her hand unprovoked sometimes, and he would still give hugs, though many times spy range style. “How did this happen so quickly,” Tea Love pondered and continued incessantly with the chatter “I embraced it, I savored every moment, I even framed it, multiple times!”
The life transition was upon her and she experienced the snap, crackle, poppin’ awesomesauceness and the crunchy, bumpy, sweet adventures of kiddo explorations. Tea Love even had some bitter sweet stuff, but this time, the bitter sweetness was looming so big in her space, in her mind and heart, it was a bit overwhelming to accept, to process, and to integrate. “Accept or melt away”, Tea Love wrote in her journal and before she closed it she wrote in all caps, “ACCEPT, then CRY, and wait lovingly for the next bear hug.” She thought about it for a minute and had to put one more thing, “Bear hugs are sometimes necessary no matter how bitter sweet the moment is or how bitter sweet the acceptance is” and she smiled closing the journal for the night.
Not long after the big 1-0, Tea Love and Bacon Little were at their Sunday church ritual, listening attentively in the pews, searching for the right hymn when suddenly the bitter sweet transition was illuminated with, well, as Bacon Little put it, “booty bumpin’ in church with mom”. Tea Love laughed, like that belly shaking laugh, and chimed in to say, “not quite sure I would describe it that way, more like love sways”, as they were love pushing each other’s hips to the beat of the hymn, or maybe it was that hip-hop song he requested on the drive there that was stuck in the rhythm of their body.
Either way, the Divine held both their heart’s that day in such synchronicity, that the transition felt for the first time in a long time like snap, crackle, poppin’ awesomesauce with a big twist of sacred on the side. As Father Greg Boyle reminds us, don’t move. Click. Take a picture, because just as much as God was certainly discussed in the sermon, nothing in those words could compare to the Divine essence that was right there in the laughter, in the booty bumpin’ with yogi mom in the church pews. “It was the sweetest most divine chocolate ever,” thought Tea Love.
Savor the transitions. Accept, and then hold still. Really still and know the Divine too in the booty bumping laughter that could miss us if we chose to melt away in our own noise.
Om Shanti Om ~ Athea