Shall We Dance?

After-63

I feel like I’m doing the Cha-Cha these days.

2 steps forward , 1 (okay, maybe 2) steps back.

I think this is what might known as the “Post-Treatment/Get To Know Your New Normal” Phase.  I’m not completely done with treatment (after this morning, only 4 IVs to go!) but the Herceptin doesn’t hit me like the chemo.  At least, not that I can see.

On any given day I go from full speed to nap time, all within the span of about 8 hours.  And that’s just in my head.  My body tends to want to slow much sooner than that.

The New Normal.

Once I look for work in the mornings, I have more free time than I am used to.  Since booking from Facebook a week ago, my mind is freer as well (all those endless loop “conversations” in my head are gone! Whooya!)

Now, I spend as much time as I want doing things around the house, in the garden, in my office.  I was feeling pretty good about that until 3 days ago, when my daughter got laid off – this for the second time in 3 months.

…..”Goddamnitcutusafuckingbreakwillyou?”

……”I’msorryIdon’tmeanthatI’mjustscared.”

…….”Thankyouforallofyourblessingsandyourgrace.”

………”HowcanIbeofservicetoday?”

THAT is The New Normal, too, apparently.

Thank God for a God that isn’t as easily offended as are a goodly number of the humans I know.  Thank God for a Goddess who knows me – who knows my fullness, and who doesn’t judge me on 130 characters. Who knows what makes my heart-break, what betrays it, and what strengthens it (whether by the hand of another or my own).

When faced with things like illness, layoffs, deaths, separation –  what are my options here?  I can either sink to the bottom of the Victim Pool  and drown under the weight (I might have to take a number, though, ‘cuz it’s crowded down there).  That won’t help.

Or I can remind myself – and my girl – that every Life has challenges.  Always.  These things are as part of the natural cycle of life as births, marriages, promotions, and vibrant well-being.  They come and they go like cycles or seasons, and we don’t have to face them alone.   We get through these hard times together, pulling as a unit, with the Divine energizing and blessing our prayers, our efforts and our progress.

There are so many things a parent wants to do for their children, no matter how old they are.  I, for one, want to make their worlds safe for them.  SAFE is a big word for me this days. But life isn’t about being “safe”, and they are on their journeys as well with their own Souls and their own Soul Contracts.  I can’t “protect” them from the very thing Life may want to use to mature them.

After all, It’s  the wind and the rain that strengthens the tree.  Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes calls it the “hardening off”.   We develop things like patience, fortitude, courage, faith and grace during the storms of life.  We last.  We keep standing.

We learn to Rock the Cha-Cha.

Good thing I like to dance…

( the photo is of me and my son, dancing at his wedding last March. BEST. DANCE. EVER. )

Shifting Gears

Rams Head on UrnIt’s a New Moon in Aries today.  A Super New Moon at that.  The Elephant Journal has a great article out today on this new moon, “Trust in the Magic of New Beginnings.” 

In it, the author says, “Sometimes the best thing we can do is close our eyes, hope for the best and jump.

What a statement!

My natal moon is in Aries, as well as 4 other planets.  So I tend to take anything in Aries pretty seriously, especially when it seems that my life is reflecting something – mirroring – the archetypal energies in the sky. And I always take the moon seriously.  Which is why, for the last few days, I’ve been working on my Vision Board.  It’s been about 4 years since I made the last one, and it was time.

The inspiration was carried to me on some new energy flowing through my home over the last few days. It’s got a clean, life affirming vibe. Putting my Vision Board together just sort of ‘happened’, and it was fun and relaxing – not a task on my To Do list.  And even though there are some challenges going on, I find myself walking around with a huge grin my face at the oddest moments, like while vacuuming, or cooking.

I experienced huge shift earlier this week while out for a walk,  Feeling kind of heavy-hearted,  I asked Whoever Was Listening, “How to I shift out of this?” The answer came fast and super simple:  Gratitude.  Ah, of course!  I know all about the Magic of Gratitude so I started expressing thanks for the good things I could see – the beautiful day, the ability to walk, the Turkey Vultures.

And – just like that – SHIFT.

It’s all about perspective, isn’t it?  Back in August, after my 2nd or 3rd round of chemo, I began sewing again.  It was something enjoyable I could do throughout the day as my energy allowed.  And since I tend to pick simple things to work on (I sew a mean straight line), I decided to work on some market bags

My intention was to “try one” to see if I liked making it.   Before I knew it, I had made, sold and given away a bunch, and My Hope Totes was born.  If you’d like to see a portfolio (all the bags shown are sold), you can find them HERE.

I thought the name was catchy…a play on one of my favorite movies.  And HOPE, well, it’s been my Anchor Word for the past year –  right up there with TRUST.

When I am feeling HOPE and TRUST, my heart opens, like a lotus towards the sun.  I can feel when it’s happening, that unfurling.  It’s such a beautiful sensation, I’ve taken to cultivating it with much more intention these days.

Whether it’s the Spring, or my recent birthday, or the way Moon is aligned, my Heart Lotus is opening.  I sense it in odd moments while I’m putzing around my house.  My smile usually gives it away.  Embodying the message of HOPE is really what I feel I’m here for.  Like, HOPE is my purpose.  I know what it’s like to feel hopeless, and I know what it is like to have someone there – be it human, animal or event – at just the right time with just the right word to lift your spirits.

I experience that daily, and I want to be that for others.  I’m surrendered into the Service of Hope.  And, the more I give away, the more I feel it myself. Like Magic.

Walking On

I woke early again this morning, not feeling well, and I knew my body was responding to the emotional energy that is moving inside and through and around me.

After a quiet time of meditation, prayer and tea, where I cried to release some of the pressure building in my chest, I decided to prepare something to eat.  And when I did, I surprised myself by BBQing a small steak I found, and baking a potato.  I ate both with relish, and – in the case of the root – a lot of butter. That it was 10:30 in the morning didn’t matter, and I felt better for eating something Earthy and grounding.

My plans for the day included a quiet Being rather than Doing, and I picked up my iPad, tapped the Gaia app, and was transported.  It was there I found this video, this gift.  I have now watched it several times and each time I do, I cry at the end.  Good tears.  Tears of love and gratitude.

Even without the stunning visuals, it contains such a powerful healing that I would swear it was written especially for me, and for this moment in particular.  That’s why I transcribed it below.  My hope is that you will find it as full of comfort and peace as I did.

Walk On – A Revelation on the Journey of Life
From “Graceful Passages” by Gary Malkin

Good morning, Grandfather,

I entered this life a ways back
and put skin on
to walk two-legged on this creation
and what a glorious time it was.

It taught me about breath
and about sense and feeling
and caring through my heart

and I walked on around that Red Road
Looking and trying to understand more
About The Mystery
And the secrets She holds

And You spoke to me
through the wind
and You sang to me through the birds
And You brought challenges forth
so that I might listen to the message You bring me
more sincerely

And I kept walking down this road…

And I came around the bend
at the middle of that curve in the road
and I began to find a secret
in the Spirit of myself

And still I walked on…

Sometimes blind and deaf
And sometimes with pain
But I fought with my fears
And I embraced my unknowingness

And still I walked on…

And as The Door of the Great Spirit World came closer
my fear loomed up inside sometimes
but Something called me forth
The Morning Star rose with each day
And my prayer became a centering

And still I walked on…

Until I began to hear the Song of the Mother
And Her arms embraced me so
That instead of walking
She carried me right to The Door
And as The Door opened
I heard Her Song
And Her Song lifted me up

So I could soar…

The Sky Inside Me

A random draw this morning from the Hope Cards I received as a gift....

A random draw this morning from the Hope Cards I received as a gift….

Today is my 59th birthday, and I’m giving myself a gift.

I’m deactivating my Facebook account.

I think I’ll wait until tomorrow, and start fresh on April Fools Day.  Seems appropo on so many levels.

The idea of leaving Facebook has been building for some time now.  Robert Ohotto planted the seed weeks ago as I was listening to his series on the Saturn in Sagittarius phase we’re in.  This 2 year transit began in December of 2014 and runs through December of 2017.  Interesting enough, my natal Saturn is in Sag, and my Second Saturn Return is also now in play.

Was it a coincidence that the breast cancer showed up in the same month this transit began?

Um, No.  Synchronicities, if we are paying attention, guide us.

One lesson emphasized in this phase is learning to say “NO” to one thing in order to say “YES!” to something else.  Saturn is giving us an opportunity to incarnate the next level of our potential, through the alchemical lens of TRUTH.  We’re in heavy turf here.

This is about Ego identity, and the Teacher has a shit load of questions:  Who do we really think we are, anyway?   How do we define success, and are we disciplined enough to get there?  Where are we most insecure and vulnerable to the criticisms of others?  What beliefs (perhaps, false beliefs) make us vulnerable, and what would make us stronger in that area?  In which ways have we repressed our growth, by holding our creativity hostage?

And (this is a biggy) do we sacrifice changing our lives in favor of the status-quo?

The jigs up. No more looking at life through rose-colored glasses.  No more hiding from our shadow alliances, our shadow agreements, our shadow esteem.

The Sheriff is in town and he has come to assist us into a new more authentic, more grown up and more responsible way of living.  This new potential comes from the Unknown of our life.  Which means we have to be willing to take risks to get there.

We are literally giving birth to a new self, and Saturn is here as our Coach urging us to breathe, to pace ourselves, and to remind us that we can do this if we are rigorously honest with ourselves and others.  TRUTH is the key.

What is True for me right now is that Facebook isn’t fun any more, and it really hasn’t been for some time. After analyzing this for weeks, I could give example after example for each reason.  But the bottom line is, I simply do not belong there – at least, not right now.  My psychic feelers are too sensitive.  I’m still bloodied and recovering from the Dark Night I just underwent.  I’m struggling to use the right filters when I want to comment or post – filters that help me speak the same language as others, without compromising my own truth.

The sky this morning at about the time I was born. The pattern looks a lot like the Hope Card I drew!

My 3rd eye is wide open and I can’t bear watching all the connecting being done through woundology.  This is part of this whole energy we’re in as well, with Chiron squared up as it is with Saturn.  All kinds of karmic hurts and past traumas are coming up in the Collective, and I find myself triggering people, and all manner of things are appearing – like when you lance a boil or pop a zit.

I am, after all, a Wounded Healer in my own right.  I just don’t go around talking about it, and haven’t for a good while.

It is possible, after all, to be too real and too raw.  Too honest.  No one invited me to call out their Bull Shit (FB trolls especially hate that).  This is “truth” as well, and one I’ve struggled with my whole life.  When to speak, what to speak, and when to keep my mouth shut.

I’ve done a pretty good job of keeping my mouth shut most of the time.  I definitely see growth there.  But Channeling Saturn, playing The Shadow, holding up The Mirror, has resulted in a bit of an emotional train wreck for me – especially since all of this is happening in my 7th House of relationship, and on the heels of everything I’ve gone through this past year.

So, time to cut myself free.  Time to give myself an energetic detox, and get jiggy with my Fools’ Journey.  With Chiron in Pisces, there is a thick pea soup of feelings to wade through, and I need all my wits about me if I want to walk assuredly and not fall off the cliff.  Destiny is in play and I have a sense there are things inside of me that have never been tapped into before.  New potential.  New skills.  Who knows?  Maybe I’m a late bloomer like Van Gogh, and there’s a masterpiece wanting to make an appearance.  He’s one of my favorites and it just so happens we share the same birthday.  (Happy birthday,Vinny!)

Showing The Taskmaster I’m serious about freeing myself from the addiction of distraction is important, and Facebook is the last frontier.  Kicking the habit will not only be “good” for me, there’s a reward is waiting for me when I do.

Saturn is cool like that.

Creative pursuits are my healing modality of choice, and while I put sewing and crochet aside for now, I’m excited about the other things I’ve got going.  Monday morning starts a series of pottery classes (a birthday gift from  my husband ) and that’s awesome.  My first attempt at this class several years ago crashed and burned after only 2 sessions.  This time, I’m going the distance.

Last week  I signed up for a couple of online painting classes – one with Shiloh Sophia, the brilliance behind the artwork in one of my favorite decks – The Mother Mary Oracle. There’s a Vision Board calling my name, my little garden to tend, some tinctures I want to try my hand at, and a new career to uncover.

And something else that’s shown up and worth exploring – I’ve found myself doodling and hairdrawing as I journal in the morning.  It’s like the right side of my brain is all excited, which is pretty funny because my hair is literally growing in post-chemo with the Right Side lit up like a two-bit whore on a bottle of wine!  (Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up!)

Even the desire to write is making an appearance again, after being underground for a long while.  Who knows?  Maybe all those people were right last year who said to me, “You should write a book!”

Maybe.  Just maybe I will.