And other meditations on body image, body respect, and the summer goodness of some Siggi’s orange and ginger yogurt and fresh warm raspberries, and yeah ok, I admit a little medical marijuana.
I will probably never be a vegan. First and foremost, the truth is, when it comes to food, I am an omnivore. And the big business of veganism is rearing almost as ugly a head as the omnivores. But never quite as obviously messy as the carnivore. You simply can not get away with eating and avoiding harm. So you go for as little harm as possible no matter which path you choose and if you’re lucky there are local food providers actually keeping quality of life for food, be it plant or animal, and, therefore, us.
Two years ago I was emotionally distressed and depressed and angry and scared, and under constant stress from a few directions. I was spiritually stagnating but in the process of trying to rectify that. I was physically exhausted and I thought it was the stress and energy output. So I joined a gym and starting doing a couple weight workouts and rowing 3 miles 3 days a week. It felt good. I wish it was water wet rowing but I closed my eyes and put on my headphones and I rowed on lakes of sparkling diamonds and under willow trees, gorgeous sunrises and sunsets and the red winged blackbird would call me. I lost weight and really started toning my upper body. My body up top was shifting and when that happens, if you’re paying attention, mysteries can be revealed.
Thanksgiving Night 2012 I was in bed doing my breast self exam and I found a very hard, somewhat large, lump. I checked more closely, I felt my entire breast, my heart starting to beat faster. I compared it in every way to my other breast and it was all, One Of These Things Is Not Like The Other. And I knew in that moment that I had breast cancer oh holy God help me get through this. So I jumped the medical hoops and took their poison and asked them to amputate my breasts and burn my very bones with radiation. I also lost 11 lymph nodes, over 14 tumors, part of a lung but praise Goddess not my heart. My heart is good. My finger tips and toe tips are kind of numb and yet kind of tingley and my handwriting has changed a bit and I sometimes drop things. The occasional minor lymphedema. The radiation pony trick killed the mystery lump under my sternum. So I wait now. Just a couple more answers. I’ve found some patience in this process. The damage can be managed. Yeah. Now that I know.
It’s shifted things even further and I want oh so very deeply to be ever so much more mindful of how I treat it. So I now shop the Consumer’s Coop or at least the organic section at the chain store. I try to be mindful of how my food is treated and how the land that supports it is treated. What’s in the stuff I put on my skin.
I’m determined to get myself unaddicted from coke Zero, other sugars, white foods in general, an exception being white fish. I do plan to bring some things in but as treats or rare exception but man. One day at a time. I’m truly addicted to some foods and even some very specific brands/types of food. Like wafer cookies and potato chips.
So this morning, I went to the green pharmacy to exchange some cartridges that were defective. This has happened before with oils that are too thick, they are very nice about exchanging, their business thrives. And they had a new line that DOES NOT HAVE ANY POLYPROPYLENE GLYCOL in it. Holy cow. It’s about time. That stuff, touted as “something the medical field uses as a lubricant with some of their procedures and medications” but I still don’t know WTF it is. This new stuff, they label it differently. They state dosage by % not mgs. And the gal said that because of the purity you needed less. I tend to take these people at their word and they have been so very kind and caring and surprisingly professional and fun and groovy all at the same time. I do love my particular pharmacy of choice. So I got one of these new cartridges of course (plus they did exchange the other ones). Smoke less so more doses, more pure, and costs less although initial outlay is 30% higher than the other stuff. At worst be equal in the final analysis. And not have those scary words that I don’t know what they are words. I can dig it.
I came home and thought “you know Saturdays are usually a three toke day so I’ll just have one instead, see how this shifts things.” And that woman didn’t lie. So I sat up on the bed and ate a bowl of this new yogurt I found with fresh raspberries. And I offered some to the man and he said good but tart and I realized that something had shifted in my body. Because to me? It tastes really mmmmm amazing and while there is faint touch of tart, it is quite sweet to me and extremely thick and yummy. I realize that my palette has somehow begun shifting and I’m tasting simpler things in a different way now. Last year this time everything tasted like crap. Food is so delicious now.
Thinking about the dance of life, the goodness when I bit down on a little piece of ginger and thought about the interplay of live cultures in Greek yogurt and that lie they call yogurt or even worse Greek yogurt that isn’t and raspberries with their little seeds, all of it changing me from the outside inside out. Sweet, thick, rich, unbelievably healthy because how something that tastes this amazing could be so good for me and not harm anyone blows my mind. And it feels goooooood.
Life is good. It has had its challenges and Dad and Mimi gone just a month and ow and work stuff and yet wonderful partnership, somehow remaining connected to my friends, making new ones, letting go of stuff the best way I can. Be it textile or person or processed “food,” fuck we are living in Repo Man land and we can’t see it yet. Not enough of us.
So meditating the last couple days on the 100th monkey effect. It is really one of my favorite effects and I’m waiting for critical mass and I feel like I’m starting to see signs that were moving that direction.
It’s what I hope for us as those who were given stewardship of this Eden and who have failed miserably at it. But I am hoping that resistance is not futile, we are not The Borg.
So I sit here and eat my yogurt and see how a woman I know, who literally saved my life while providing a year of medical benefits that I earned simply by being me, by being loved by another, by being a valuable employee in a company who values themselves and has ethics. You save one life, you save the world. That gift radiates out into infinity and changes everything and everyone it touches. I’m waiting for the 100th or one millionth monkey effect. For us all to suddenly, unexpectedly, and apparently unconnectedly, start doing it too, washing our fruit so it’s pure when it goes in bodies.
And I smile. Because these are VERY interesting times to me. I’m so super happy except for those moments when I’m really not but they are brief, I look at them, I don’t run and I’m starting to feel well. Challenges are only that and I know what I’m in when I’m in it and so I don’t struggle so hard any more. And yes, the lady In the green pharmacy wasn’t kidding. Half a toke is plenty. I don’t really enjoy the stoned feeling, really, this is bit much this morning, but I’m relaxed and resting because of it and my body needs that. It is a gift. I just need to be watchful. And still get the laundry done.
Better get off the bed for a spurt of energy. It needs to move more too. But I’m doing better and did I say? I’m mostly happy