Sarah La Rosa

the red thread

Sarah La Rosa
the red thread
Our legacy is red...
— Sarah La Rosa | Her Strange Angels

We've been navigating around an invasion of beetles this week. All week newly hatched, tiny armored bodies have been found on our curtains, our counter tops, window sills, and I even came across one swimming in my water glass last night. They're everywhere. I keep stepping carefully to avoid crushing them.

There was a mass hatch nearby, and our house is in the landing zone. I've begun to think of our space as a halfway house for these little emerging lives to dry their bodies, gather some strength and set off on their little beetle lives, perhaps waving a thank you as they lift off and out my front door, into new territories and exciting beetle adventures.

Maybe I'm dramatizing a bit.

But any animal visitation so relentless is something I always greet with reverence and attention. I know I'm being sent a message, via beetle invasion.

Beetles are all about resurrection. They were a sacred symbol in Egypt, representing the cycle of death/decomposition/rebirth.

They begin at the ending of a thing. That's their start. There is holiness there.

The scarab would roll a piece of dung into a ball, in the direction of East to West (very interesting), then lay its eggs in it. Afterwards, it would bury this dung incubator in the earth, and after a month or so had passed, would dig it up and roll it into water, where the baby beetles would push their way out and into life.

Out of the literal shit, life emerging, with wings.

Just let that sit a moment.

The image is not lost on me.

All these winged strange angels inhabiting my home this week, the week before the release of my first book, are reminding me of and heralding my own resurrection. Resurrection.

From the dark insides of uncomfortable and downright shitty heart-aching, stretching growth that has taken my breath away. I've been deep inside the underground labyrinth, groping along the stone walls, looking for a way out. Looking to escape.

Stuck inside the dung ball, inside the stink, the death, the waste. That nasty thing only good for flushing and getting the hell out of sight, forever. That's been my very effective, divinely appointed wombspace. Yay.

And oh, how that stench has served me. Taken my shaky self to the very center of release and unraveling and fear and night blackness. All in service to resurrection, wiser sight, and skilled feet.

Deep inside this dark container of undoing, a red thread has emerged to guide me home.

Home to a more humble, more traveled woman I begin to recognize as myself.

That red thread has been my thin but resilient connection to the divine, to sisters on a similar journey, to my ultimate retrieval from the dark places we all visit time and again in our lives.

While descent is dark, it is not final, nor is it empty.

In the midst of a very dark descent, a red thread wound its way around my left wrist and tugged every so gently.

Write, it nudged. Write, Sarah. Keep writing. And I did. I followed the tug of that thread, winding and looping and turning in full revolutions without any knowledge of where I was being led. And the following of crimson soul became a dance in the dark. A dance nobody witnessed but me and the red thread.

It was a dance of decomposition. A dance, even as I filled pages and pages with tears and cries and angry, outraged shrieks of pain.

A dance of UN. The UN dance.

Unraveling. Undoing. Underneath. Unreality. Unfairness. Unbecoming. Un-becoming.

And I felt it, deep deep deep within. The unbecoming. The bleeding heat of emptying out entirely. Even the bleeding was a dance. Peeling away, shedding and scraping every recognizable feature that made me ME.

I thought.

But dancing that dance, in the dark, following the red thread through the labyrinth of decay and death and every unknown outcome awaiting me, I became strong.

I became resilient as that thread, which wove its way into my veins, a permanent part of my anatomy now as WOMAN.

I became, in my un-becoming.

From the place of waste, of shit and stink, I became a winged creature that carries red thread in her veins.

Follow your soul, beloved. Dance the dark dance in the night spaces of grief and loss and fear. Dance the red dance of thread and string and the silken guiding spirit that tugs at your wrist. This way, this way home. This way out. This way. Trust me. This way.

That red thread you're gripping for dear life carries your map into light and new life. But it holds more. It carries medicines for the healing of other women, in other dark places, dancing their own dances of death and rebirth.

Your dance and mine are initiatory. When we push out into the light and fresh air, celebrating our rebirth, we will hear the call to return. We will dive back in, holding out a red thread for our sisters to clasp and follow.

This is the way. This has always been the way. This is legacy. And it is red.