It’s been awhile since I’ve written, but folks have been asking, so I thought I would check in. I have been on a long retreat into myself, and I feel like I am only beginning to emerge; which is so counter-intuitive as winter settles in, the onset of the root time, when all things flow inward. It is a welcome change to crave conversation and comfort in the company of beloveds. To anyone reading who may feel slighted by my absence this year, I apologize...sort of. I also say, “Hey, it's really not about you right now.” I have been on a journey into the dark night of the soul, doing my work; facing my demons, and inviting them to sit down for a cup of tea, to talk things out...
I understand metal now more, what it is to be refined. SO much have I let go of; impurities if you will: unhealthy thought patterns and habits; unhealthy relationships to people, myself and reality. I had to let go of almost all of my relations for a time, to huddle into myself. My therapist put words to what I experienced best: “What do wild creatures do when they are wounded? They find a dark space and curl up and lick their wounds. They hide; they heal.” She gave me permission to go into a cocoon, and I am so grateful. And to the divine alignment of time, that I have had this experience during a pandemic that altered reality as we knew it; I feel like the whole world took a big time out while I took the biggest detour of my life! And that really helped. I had the space to rest and sink into the mire and wallow a bit without letting too many commitments “out there” go; because “out there” had ground to a halt. So I did what any reasonable person does...i got two kittens!
I went deep with the plants and the land, too. Listening, tuning in, receiving the messages I used to work so hard to hear...now flooding in, washing over me like the sea. SO many visions and dreams...dramas played out in the ethers while my corporal body lay still in a feather bed, cozy, resting, healing…I now can empathize with the mighty oak, who lives a time, and is then harvested, and thrown into the fire. The substance is burned, consumed by heat; the essence is released into the heavens, in the smoke; our dreams, hopes and prayers offered to the great mystery…
I feel lighter now, in a way...more buoyant. I know how strong I am, how big a storm I can weather. I am less afraid of the shadows and less avoidant of my fears. I have been so uncomfortable physically that I am so profoundly grateful for my abilities that remain.
One of the most unexpected outcomes of my journey with cancer is that I finally know that I am LOVED. By my family; by my friends; by my community; and finally, by my Self. I also feel the love of a profoundly benevolent and playful energy that permeates all, Who cannot be named. My heart beats out the rhythm of the love I experience in each breath and with every step, that emanates from this most majestic planet that I have the privilege and pleasure of crawling along the back of; the greatest and most generous gentle provider of all, thank you sweet Mother!
As for logistics: Invasive lobular carcinoma, Stage 2. Treatment: double mastectomy, radiation for 5 weeks (finished at the end of May), NO CHEMO (praise to the birds and the bees and all that is holy and sacred!). I spent the summer lounging in the shade, so sensitive to the heat. Acupuncture and the river are the only things that saved me. I’ve elected to use tamoxifen to work with my estrogen levels, as this allows me to enjoy the benefits of estrogen in my body without it feeding the cancer. This will also allow me to experience menopause in some years, more naturally than the other options. My final surgery is scheduled for January 31. I feel scared, but also excited to get to the next stages. The emotional charge is not as overwhelming, as this is a reconstructive focused surgery and not as mysterious. I will still have the nightmare of 6 weeks of recovery (back to T-rex arms and only 10#’s of pressure) and needing a lot of support from my family and community to get through the rest of winter.
I am still navigating a world of shitty options; I still rage at the machine of progress that keeps marching ever onward, leaving a trail of death and destruction and broken dreams and lives in its wake. I still grieve the planetary loss of an estimated 150 species a day, all so that humans can run amoc, as spoiled little Veruca Salts demanding ever more golden eggs, even as we watch our paradise crumble. Even as our own bodies express illness in sympathy with our beloved Earth. Even as the stupid-rich blast off into space, burning exorbitant amounts of energy for a cosmic joy ride, while an estimated 25,000 people per day die of starvation, half of whom are children who never get to grow up and fall in love, or live their dreams.
Sometimes I sit outside during the witching hours, pondering these things and conversing with the moon, as sleep often eludes me. Why do we buy into this shit? I awoke in a paradise filled with chaos and I do not agree to these terms. Sometimes I scream “I dissent!” at the top of my lungs, but only the screech owls and the neighbor’s dog seem to hear. I do not agree with the corporate bureaucracy that governs this country. I do not consent to capitalism. I work to disrupt these systems every chance I get. I want to live in a just world where we each have an equal opportunity to realize our dreams; not just those born into wealth and power. A world where the rights of the salamanders and bloodroot are considered as much as my own.
And so I keep on doing what I do: growing food and conversing with the flowers; feeding the bees; listening to the soil share it’s divine secrets; cavorting in moonlight; organizing joyful rebellions and celebrations of freedom; and dance, dance, dancing!
Here is my playlist that got me through radiation and the early days: Boo Bee Jams
Here is the playlist for the Gala, my Full Moon Music:
Thanks to everyone who has supported in any way: by bringing food; by helping out around my farmstead; by not taking my silence personally; by donating to the Gofundme campaign; by sending cards and sweet handmade gifts; by lighting candles and praying for me; to all the seen and unseen forces that conspired to bring me to this exact point in time-I thank you.
If you feel moved, please donate HERE!
An avid & sometimes obsessed & sometimes nomadic & always wild fermenter & culture shifter...find her scampering in a forest near you!