What’s the point?

Okay, so what’s the point of The Deep Water Leaf Society? Believe me, I wondered that myself nearly the whole time I was writing the book. It is a true story, of course. I had the content for it in my journals. I knew I’d had an incredible awakening in the years since my son’s death by drug overdose in 2004, but I was still fuzzy on what it all meant and how it had all unfolded. As I wrote the book of his life and death and my journey in the aftermath, it became clearer and clearer to me that my journey had been an amazing gift—that my son Cameron’s death had been an amazing gift.

Before writing the book, I felt uncomfortable saying that to people. I can see you right now rolling your eyes and wondering what kind of trip I’m on. Or how selfish and heartless I must be to say such a thing. But I’m not. At least, I hope I’m not. I leave it to you to judge.

The thing is, for Cameron’s whole life I wondered what we were doing here together. There was so much drama. So much pain. We loved each other deeply and completely, but it seemed like all we could do was hurt each other. We lived a battle of wills. The more I tried to control him, the more out of control he became. It was, certainly, a dysfunctional relationship. I’m pretty sure they call it “codependence.” But there was no shortage of love, even if it was poorly expressed.

Through it all, I couldn’t help thinking that we must be working out some major karma. I had a feeling, though, that it was more than just the balancing act of karma. I felt like we must have agreed to something – made a contract with each other to do something together. Okay, by the end of this post you’re going to think I’m a classic psychiatric case, but I was convinced we’d come here together to do something big.

So when he died in a most inglorious manner at the ripe young age of 26, I couldn’t help but wonder what it was we’d come here to do and how badly I’d screwed it up. My editor, after reading and editing my manuscript, asked me if maybe what we came here to do together was write this book. It’s true enough that it couldn’t have been written without everything unfolding just as it has. And I think that if the book helps other people through grief, if it helps other people experience transformation and awakening the way I did, then maybe we did good, despite all appearances to the contrary.

Going back to the opening question, what is the point? I think it boils down to this:

  1. Grief is transformational, for better or worse, whether you want it to be or not.
  2. You can let it happen TO you, or you can let it work THROUGH you for awakening and personal growth.
  3. There is great power in choosing to ENGAGE the process, making choices all along the way for healing and empowerment rather than victimhood.
  4. We are WAY BIGGER BEINGS than we think we are and this lifetime is just the tip of the iceberg.
  5. LOVE is all that matters, LOVE is all there is, LOVE never dies.

I welcome your response, here at the blog or at my website: www.deepwaterleafsociety.com.

Wishing you peace on the journey. . .

2 thoughts on “What’s the point?

  • April 19, 2008 at 10:36 PM

    I think I have a sense of where you stand on this, but I’d like to ask outright: How do you feel about the idea of “letting go” and what that actually means? I’ve been seeing a lot of those words lately, but I don’t see why I cannot continue to have a relationship with my loved one in this new context while continuing to live my life. But no one really addresses that. I think it’s enough to let go of the pain, and perhaps the delusion that one can hold on to the old life as it used to include the loved one. What do you think?

  • April 20, 2008 at 9:14 AM

    I absolutely agree with you, tglb. I think many of us struggle terribly with the idea of “letting go” because we feel that by “letting go” we are dishonoring someone who is very important to us. It seems like we’re being asked to “let go” of that person and pretend we no longer have a relationship with them.

    One of the main messages I hope people get from my story is that we DO (or at least CAN) continue to have a relationship with our deceased loved ones. Communication and healing can continue.

    We do need to let go of the pain, eventually, or it will eat us alive. And there’s no way to hold on to the old life, because it’s certainly gone. It is far more healthy to proactively create your new life in a way that works for you than to build an empty shrine to the old life. Over and over, the message I got from Cameron was, “Live your life, Mom. Be happy.”

    So, yes, let go of the pain and the old life – but by all means continue your relationship. We don’t really die, you know. We simply shift into new form and the veil is very thin between here and there. Cameron is talking to me all the time and I know he helped me to write the book.

    Thanks for your comment!


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