Today I woke up with the phrase “life is a mystery” in my head. Not a mystery like the mystery fiction reviewed here, but in the sense that one never knows what life will bring. For good or bad and everything in between, life just is. Unpredictable, beyond our control (despite our efforts to control it) and without a neat plot and ending like the mystery fiction I love.
So I made a decision that I’d occasionally write about a “life mystery.” And for me, that means those mysterious connections or events one has if paying attention. Those little gifts that life brings when we are not investing our energy into our thought stories and instead paying attention and connecting to the world around us.
Today I decided to go to the Renegade Arts Festival in Seattle. I’ve been before but this is my first attempt at walking and standing so much since recovering from cancer.
On my first “loop” I stopped at Bobo Jewelry >> There were bracelets and necklaces and rings…but I NEVER look at rings. My knuckles are, in my opinion, too big. Ugly knuckles. But since I lost my hair to chemo, wearing earrings just makes my ears look huge and wearing a necklace draws attention to my chemo port.
So I looked at the rings and found a design I loved. I chatted with the artist, which I try to do with all the artists whose work I really like. I told him how much I love his work and that I’d be back after my first loop. Really friendly guy.
I finished my loop and came back. As I was looking, the artist said to me, “I meant to tell you before, I really love your haircut and color.”
I burst into tears.
As he apologized, I explained they were tears of joy. I told him how I had lost all my hair to chemo and that it use to be long and colored golden. This was the grow in and I am still so self conscious. I only stopped wearing a cap about a month ago.
He then told me that his mom is now seven years breast cancer free, so he totally understands. We had a lovely moment. I shared that this was the first time I was walking around a festival this size.
And then he told me that last night he had a dream–and that he never remembers his dream but this one was crystal clear. He had a phrase left from the dream that he shared with me:
Life is a lease. Love, enjoy, give.
I cried again, he cried, his assistant cried. I chose my ring and when I went to pay, he said, “This is a gift.”
And it was. A gift of not just an incredibly beautiful ring, but of a life mystery-an in the moment connection that was human to human, stripped of politics, commercialism, and superficiality.