Aug 31, 2011 – Standing alone on the deck. The sky hints of pink, but promises light moment by moment. I hear every silent breath, mine and the trees’.
Ellen arrives like an apparition from the dark, whispers in my ear that someone or some thing whispered in her ear, awakening her with the sound of her own name.
Arising to follow the call, she found the door standing open…now she is standing next to me. We are silent.
Suddenly movement in the dark dawn, down below us, in the trees.
We follow the movement, separate, and disappear from one another.
I wander through waist high grass –
find nothing and no one, not even Ellen.
7 AM sit is silent, still, free.
What is it I love about Colorado? Surely it is the sapciousness, like in New Mexico. The trees in Colorado give space a shape without using it up. A tree must surely know its own empty self, just like the sky and the clouds- like they know they are not separate at all.
There is a tendency to become bored swimming laps for some people. I thought I was a little bored yesterday during my swim, when suddenly I realized that my toes were very happy. Far from bored, they were fully alive. My ten toes love swimming.
August 22, 2012
Respect for that which I have no respect, may take me a long way down my spiritual path.
That which I do not respect, is placed somewhere outside of my mind, and therefore out of my conscious experience – excluded.
“Preference” is written all over it. Zen is the art of non-preference.
Embodying that which I do not respect = being whole, being one with all beings. Humility is here. Empathy is here. Compassion is here- in the embodiment of my experience as a whole.
August 11, 2012
I have written about the pain and hard work of becoming, and I have written a protocol for living with and managing my pain (See Elder Blossoms). What I have not addressed is a much larger dimension of my experience. It is what I do with my time.
Here is the kicker. My current lifestyle is my dream lifestyle, even my plan for retirement. The only part I did not plan or desire is the pain. Yet it seems the pain has forced the lifestyle. I can tell you that my vision of retirement includes the following: working with people and the healing arts twelve or so hours a week, teaching herbal medicine and spending time making herbal medicine, allowing hours each day for athletics and hot tubbing at the gym, receiving massage and chiropractic treatments each week, taking naps, spending quality time with pets and neighbors, eating well, surrounding myself with positive minded folks who like to laugh, meditating as a way of life rather than as an event in the day, moving slowly between activities and keeping everything very simple. Well, I am here to tell you that I have what I have asked for.
Right now I am just listening to my body. Body wisdom rules.
P.S. Earlier pain of 8.5 is down to 4ish and I am sitting to write this post. Yay!
Today as I drew breath down into my belly, it filled up almost all the space inside me, but I paused and then breathed in a little more and my front and back were separated from one another as the space between expanded. A full breath cycle swept exhale and inhale along the undersides of my rib cage and massaged the tissues in front of my spine. Breath gently soothed all the tender places inside and alongside my spine, and the lightning strike of disc contacting nerve became more like strong river flowing. “Breath sweeps mind”, I guess.
Sometimes I feel my mother. I don’t mean I feel like her. I feel her, in my body. For instance, when I swim. When my body rolls side to side, raising my arms from the water like knife blades to cut the water and push me forward, my mind’s eye sees the graceful arc of her arm and the turn of her body bringing her white rubber swim cap up and down, up and down, the kind with the chin strap. I feel my arms are hers, and I wish I had one of those swim caps.
Venturing back to work, cautiously, after a term of disability. Taking one step at a time, literally, going slowly along with single pointed focus. Grateful to to the pain that will not allow mindless movement? I suppose yes. Most grateful for the practices I have learned to heal myself , including those which teach me to accommodate my experience in every moment, no matter what it is.
For now, I am practicing what I preach, and we will see how that goes. So far, so good.
I am your mother
Even your brother, son, father
Look into me
Release your hold
And be free