This morning I was just talking to someone about her process of being in the Goo. Last night it was a close family member who clearly has gone into Goo-dom.
You know the Goo. It’s the sense of being unformed. The place of not being able to figure out who the heck we are without our career, marriage, kids who are growing up, the eating disorder, our close people who have died, or (fill in the blank) __________ The experience of having no identity. The slipping, sliding, muddy place we hit when everything we relied on to be who we are stops working. We keep trying to get traction to stand up and move forward, but every effort seems to result in a face-plant back into gooey slime.
What I’m noticing about the Goo is that we think we’re the only ones who are there. So maybe we feel ashamed or terrified or furious, but for sure, we’re not talking about it.
Being in the Goo is a solo journey, for sure. It’s what the myths about getting lost in the underworld are referring to. These are the times in our lives when it is completely in sync to descend into the transformative fires of hell. It’s the time for us to test ourselves, to feel what it’s like to be totally incinerated, find out if we can actually emerge from the ashes and fly off.
But, please know, though you’re on your own, you’re not alone. I once asked a group of 25 how many of them were in the goo, and was quite surprised to find out it was about half. HALF. In other words, we’re probably constantly morphing through the cycle that every caterpillar must follow: in form; being pulled to change; enter ingthe cocoon; going into Goo (did you know that caterpillars become goo while they’re in the cocoon? I didn’t); staying there as long as it takes; and finally emerging back out into the world as a brand-new, completely transmuted being.
Maybe we need some Goo Support groups. Of course, no one would want to attend. They’d just feel bad about not going. Hmm, how about something more surreptitious, like a secret hand signal or a coded t-shirt? Then we’d recognize each other, could say, “Oh, she’s in Goo. Now I understand why I haven’t seen her in awhile.” Or, “Ah, it’s the Goo. I can overlook his incoherent mumblings and that slightly crazed look in his eyes. I’ll just leave a casserole at his back door.”
I want to say this again. You’re on your own, but YOU’RE NOT ALONE. The other half of us are out here in our temporary forms, having the illusion that we know who we are. Then we’ll get the call to get bigger and our process will begin again. Maybe you’ll be out here for us by then.