THE BLOG
01/09/2009 12:57 pm ET Updated Feb 08, 2012

Word of the Day: Liminal

So, I have been avoiding writing this post for the last week because no matter what I write here, I always seem to bring up my father"s death, and well, I fear that you are thinking, "God she is so fucking depressing with all this death shit." And if you are, I can't blame you. I am feeling this way a bit about my self and my life too. There is a part of me that just wants to GET ON WITH THE FUTURE, and yet, here I am again...

And that brings me to the word of the day: Liminal (I feel like Stephen Colbert writing that). Defined by most dictionaries, as a threshold, and seen a bit more expansively by the world of mythology and depth psychology as a place that is in-between, no-man's land, neither here nor there. Liminal is that uncomfortable place where the old ways are dying, and the new ones have not yet been born.

Marilyn Ferguson, puts it quite well when she says, "Its not so much that we're afraid of change or so in love with the old ways, but it's that place in between we fear...It's like being in between trapezes. It's Linus when his blanket is in the dryer. There's nothing to hold onto."

No matter how much of me wants to move on to my future, get on with my "new" life after my dad's death, I keep getting reminded by my psyche that I am living in the zone of the in-between. I start to get revved up about projects I had begun before he died (new life coaching clients, a one-woman show, leading workshops around the world), only to find myself unsure about what it was about those projects that are meaningful to me now. Or, on the other side of it, when I feel ready to jump into a new routine, start fresh and re-invent myself (yoga, writing and speaking publicly, pod-casting), I feel bogged down by the unfinished business of grieving what is gone and no longer with me. I can't go back and I can't go forward. I am stuck in the middle with me.

Although being here is irritating, I also know it is necessary. There is no transformation without this icky part of the process. As we all know, there is no butterfly without that gooey, amorphous cocooning that happens to the caterpillar. God, I hate that.

A few months ago, when I was invited to join this online community, I thought, yes, now I can jump in and talk about the big paradigm shift that is happening on this planet, the leap that consciousness is about to take. I will throw myself into my passion about this and be a resource for people to learn about the ground-breaking work of individuals and organizations that are pulling us forward into What Is Next. With the election of Obama, and the continuing disintegration of our infrastructure, I knew that the time was ripe for this conversation, what I like to call Waking from the American Dream. I, like this country, see growth, expansion and the big What Is Next, as the only things that can make me feel good. Living my own Manifest Destiny is the job of the ego, whether it is my ego or the nation's.

But instead, here I am, stuck and confused, changed but not quite sure what to do next, humbled by the power of death, and yet still alive enough to feel the force of hope. And I look out my window at this world and can't help but think that maybe this sharing of my grief and confusion is part of the conversation that America needs right now too. And that my best laid plans are just that, and that every thing that every one of us planned for this year, or this time in are lives, have dissolved in our hands faster than we could imagine.

Maybe feeling stuck and confused and offering my pain up to you, is a mirror to where we all are right now - alone and yet together, here, in the liminal awaiting the natural time when clarity will come, and the next step will be obvious. But until then, I will be patient with my process, I will be patient with the process, and I hope that we can all sit with each other in this country and be patient with its process too.