These Boots Are Made For Dancing

The following quotes are from an article published this week by Martha Beck: you can read it all here: The Willingness Factor by Martha Beck

Martha Beck is currently one of my favorite writers about life journeys. I’m still struggling with reading large chunks of text and content, like books and tomes and paragraphs and words and stuff so I’m wading very slowly through “Finding Your Way In A Wild New World.” Her blog posts are juuuuust right. That, Facebook, and smart thrillers by John Sandford.

“People who’ve been through hell are often forced to learn this, which is why activist, cancer patient, and poet Audre Lorde wrote, “When I dare to be powerful—to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.”

I’ve been through hell and cancer (this autocorrected as Dancer and I’m taking that as a message from the universe) was, believe it or not, NOT my first trip. I haven’t had much time to be afraid, only in the dead of night.

My first visit to hell was a summer of utter drug debauchery that nearly killed me and did kill, for 2 minutes, one of my suppliers. I didn’t understand at the time that I was actually IN hell until his overdose and suddenly the clock and time zoomed forward into a pinpoint of a nightmare worthy of Hunter S. Thompson. I fled. I was 19.

The second visit to hell began when I married, for better or worse, that same almost dead supplier. I was so young. I didn’t realize that he was still dying. His body didn’t die until 2000 but his spirit gave up the ghost long before. I forgive him for the hell because I understand now where he was and that, unlike me, he pitched his tent and sat down and lit a fire and started cooking rocks to eat. My motto is: NEVER pitch your tent in hell. Just keeeeep on walking, sometimes crawling on hands and knees grabbing dirt and rocks and dust to pull yourself forward. But forward is forward, no footprints on MY back. I gave up a son in hell because I wanted him to be here, on Earth, happy, healthy, and alive. And someone else had the ability to do that as I did not. But eventually I had to leave my husband with his tent and hoard of boxes full of self loathing and keeeep on walking.

Some might think that the end of my drinking (FINALLY) was because I’d been through hell. If I had been THROUGH, however, I’d still be drinking. Unfortunately, for a couple years I did pitch my tent (autocorrected repent! Wow) there. What surprises me the most is that the people who were in my life at the time were on the other side waiting for me when I finally put my boots back on and started walking out. Again.

This past year of cancer has been Hell. Hell because it was CANCER, hello. Double radical mastectomy chemo radiation Hell. I’m STILL trying to grasp the magnitude of it all, it’s so vast and blackholey. Not only is it big but my brain got a bit scrambled in the toxic chemical lunch process.

It was Hell because I couldn’t visit my Dad and cry on his shoulder like I used to do. His mind is going and the risk of infection from his adult home was too great for me with no immune system so I went through that whole year without my Daddy. I still can’t write or talk about that without sobbing.

It was Hell because I had to decide to put my aging kitty Miss Mitty to sleep. Between cancer, Mitty, and my Dad I was struggling greatly with the value of life and knowing when to end it. It took me a few months longer than usual to decide for her. And then my beloved, most loved, Uncle Will passed away. Oh Lord.

But wait, there’s more. Blow of all blows, Mr. Furnace decided to move without consulting me. It was during this time that I really grasped the significance and magnitude of the TBI (traumatic brain injury) he’d suffered 20 years ago. When I showed up with the truck that he couldn’t organize or pay for, I discovered he’d been hoarding, or rather allowing, a very, and I do mean VERY, psychotic homeless women hoard his home. She was his project. He was going to help her get on her feet and live a good life. I’ve never been so shocked in my life. It was unimaginable and it was the deepest depth of hell for me. I was still going through chemo every week. No one was there to move his crap out to a storage unit but him and I. And her, drunk at 8am in her socks in the alley, flashing her tits to the neighbors.

I’m sorry to those who think I should keep this to myself but our secrets keep us sick, he shall remain anonymous, and those who knew him will forget his name. You are getting very sleepy. We all deserve love and forgiveness and I forgive him with all my heart but that’s the end of THAT. You need to understand this to understand where I end up and I need to tell you. That day woke me up to the fact that the relationship was literally killing me and had, in some part, helped to create cancer inside me. Worrying about not eating wheat products to prevent inflammation and therefore cancer was the least of my worries. I had visible cancer right there in front of me. And it walked and talked and and and

He was at that moment homeless and good woman that I am, I said he could stay with me for a week. It turned into almost 3 months. While I finished chemo, started recovering from chemo, began radiation, and badly sprained my ankle we were there in my small basement haven turned flophouse trying to be amiable, knowing it was over but trying to do it with grace and dignity. He got me through surgery and chemo and while we had irreconcilable differences, I’ll be forever grateful that he was THERE for me when I needed it most.

The diagnosis and surgery and worst of chemo was almost over but from April through October, my life turned into five hundred and forty seven levels of Hell.

I wish God/dess didn’t trust my inner strength so much. I don’t know how I made it. More than once I wanted to end my life, the journey was no longer working for me. I wanted a Do Over. But I just couldn’t do it. Because I knew that this next quote is true. Always have, always will.

“Emotional discomfort, when accepted, rises, crests, and falls in a series of waves. Each wave washes parts of us away and deposits treasures we never imagined. No one would call it easy, but the rhythm of emotional pain that we learn to tolerate is natural, constructive, and expansive. It’s different from unwilling suffering the way the sting of disinfectant is different from the sting of decay; the pain leaves you healthier than it found you.”

And right now, while I’m still grieving many, MANY, losses, some of which go back to my own actual adoption memory of being in the womb shrieking “Mommy don’t leave me!”, I’m ready to live again. I’m healthier. Reborn. A new life. I get a do over without having to die and the gift of remembering the past so it can guide me as I move forward, lessons learned.

I know now that my Mom is here, she always has been. She just didn’t give birth to me. But God/dess knows, she was THERE. She’s my best and closet friend. I tell her everything. We talk almost every day. We care for each other. We try to lighten the load for each other. We support each other and no topic is taboo.

I am surrounded and I do mean SURROUNDED, by the most awesome group of friends a gal could want. They’ve donated their time in many ways, from packing to driving me places to playing their music for my fundraiser to sending cards and love and energy and even regular old money, buying my art or just GIVING from every corner of the earth. For the first time in my life I let myself RECEIVE. My friends they are legion and the love flows.

My co-workers, team mates, beloved Sesameeps, have supported me in many ways as well. They kept my job intact, they kept my CUBICLE intact (that was a massive feat as we all know that office vultures descend on cubicles), paid my medical benefits the entire time I was sick and rejoiced and celebrated my return. They played with me on Facebook, had a fundraiser, sent me care packages, and never, ever forgot me and welcomed me back with delight and love and I don’t even know how that happens.

I can only, simply, RECEIVE. Sometimes I can’t help but cry for the Grace of it all. I can only stand and receive and I never knew it would feel like this.

Was Cancer a Gift? FUCK NO. The right question is, was the journey a gift? Oh yes. No mistake, I’m not who I was and I’m better, happier, more grateful. And cancer free. Healthier.

I took the months of November and December off from visits and contact. I cried for almost two solid months in the restful silence of my new home and with my new kitty mitty, Mimi. She was sick too and we both just rested. And cried. A LOT.

I’m back at work but had a bit of relapse after the company party this weekend. Done got my ass kicked but it was worth it in every way. I see my limits now. Overstimulation zapped me pretty hard and I was just starting to get my energy back. I’m sure in a day or two I’ll get it back again and the journey towards Thriving, not Surviving, will continue.

So many relationships have been so full of Drahma and Trauhma. So many ended this year. And many have begun. I *have* had one visitor in my life of late. Please don’t be sad if it wasn’t you. I love you all. I just needed fresh air, a new experience, a new friend. Something, someone, new, a friend from long ago who I’m getting to know better. Someone who is mellow and easy and kind of quiet in a smart, interesting, and chatty way, letting me be me, and by the fact of his calmness, calms me when he’s around. And maybe just a little uncalming too, but in a good way. In an Infinite Possibilities way.

These visits aren’t every day mind you. GAWD, I’d keel over for good, I’m lucky to get the coffee cups washed and the cat fed. He is someone who knows I didn’t only call to chat but perhaps to also dip my toe in the water and maybe, if the water’s fine, build something on shore if the winds blow favorably. Someone who already knows about the cancer and the pain and the chemo and the sick and the bloat and yet, he comes by and we laugh and talk about many things. Like walruses and strings.

Love Not Fear. It will get you through anything. Knowing the wheel will turn and sometimes you’ll be drowning under water and sometimes you’ll be basking in the sun. Spring is coming and I want this life, this new life I’m creating from the depths of Hell. I refused to pitch my tent even though at times the temptation was great, I was just so fucking tired and bruised and aching that I simply didn’t want to move any more, not one more inch.

I’ve got my boots on again but I’m not walking through Hell any more. I’m in the plain jane world of life and it feels great. I do still have great sobs burst from me and then a rain of tears but it passes like a summer storm and I’m cleansed some more. The grieving process will take awhile but who says I can’t put on my party clothes and dance at the same time?

These boots were made for DANCING. Was I afraid? Yes. Did I continue on in service to my vision? My vision that I will know a life where I feel loved by those around me but most importantly and finally, by my Self? Yes. Like a tsunami, my life last year got TOSSED and all the flotsam and jetsam rose to the surface, floating there, reminding me that I couldn’t store them carefully away in little organized and labeled boxes any more. The lids were off and they were there for all to see. But, also like a tsunami, each subsequent wave that hits me is lesser than the one before. Right now waves are gently lapping at my ankles, the trash has been cleared away, and pretty little fishes nibble at my ankles in the sparkling blue crystal clear water. Every once in awhile, the seventh wave hits, bigger than the others, and I cry, sometimes I even fall in, but it’s easier to get back up these days, so I stand, ankle deep, in heaven on earth and I have faith that I can weather ANYTHING this world throws at me. Love, faith, fear. They dance together and the dance wouldn’t be complete without each part of the circle. I’m doing everything I can to invite Joy to join us. Come dance with me… Kiss me… Allow me to show you my smiling shining light.

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GROUNDING and SHIELDING 101

Some of you expressed an interest in what I meant when I said I had failed to ground last night before the party and I was very jangled and couldn’t sleep. And how does one do that? Didn’t know you could? Can it really make the difference? Oh yes.

I believe that all humans, all living beings, animals and plants included, are created with the ability to sense and react to the energy of all living and non living things, from mom to rocks. As we grow up we start to lose this ability. Use it or lose it I say. We don’t teach it in our homes or at school or on the playground. We actually deny it exists and that we can’t do it and deny those who say they can until we’ve become a society of folks who don’t know what is running them. But we do feel the effects whether we believe in them or not. And absorbing the energy of others either runs you ragged or brings you energy to restore you. Leave yourself wide open and unshielded and you will notice it the next day.

What I don’t know about me, runs me. And sometimes what’s running me is the entitled doctor on the phone with me at work, hitting me with his power to get his way. If I’m not grounded, centered, and shielded, I’m in trouble. And yes, he might not understand HOW it works but make no mistake he is INTENTIONALLY hitting me with his power. He knows that gets results in his sad little world.

I have lots to say on THAT subject but will stick to grounding today.

Many of you (and I know quite a few witchy folks are here and I KNOW you could probably say this better than I) might be familiar with the exercise of holding your palms face to face in front of you and bring them closer together and further apart to find that you can feel the heat, the energy flowing. There are many more advanced exercises you can do with just the palms of your hands and the palms of other people’s hands. Try it now. I like closing my eyes so I have to rely on my other senses to tell me how close or far they are from each other and to feel it.

I can actually feel energy stretching thin and thick like an accordion. I can send into your hands and I can make a ball with it. But not like Harry Potter. Just a fun little ball of energy. But I know if I worked on it long enough I COULD form and send a ball of energy to hit someone. I’ve done it by accident in extreme grief. But intentionally, that would go against all my beliefs about love and I would be a traitor to myself.

What does this have to do with grounding? A lot. We sense and are absorbing the energy around us whether we are consciously aware of it or not. Ever seen a mob? Gotten a contact high? Felt the energy pulsing and slamming into you at a Ramones concert? It’s always there, always accessible.

But because we deny it, we are at the whim of it. We are open receivers and transmitters just sending it out and taking it in and we wonder why, when we get home from work, that we have to lie on the couch for 20 minutes just to decompress. Or get drunk. Which leaves you open even more and the cycle continues. Those guys with tin foil hats probably really are more sensitive. I had a conversation with a guy in tin foil hat once and he actually made some sense except for our refusing to believe in energy.

When we are sick or “low energy” we are even more susceptible to the energy of others. Last night was loud and raucous and drunken and fun and silly and there was a TON of energy zapping all around that room. Some people even got a little cranky, like the women with the mic who couldn’t get everyone to shut up and listen which created confusion in the clusterfuck game.

Soooo. How do I protect myself from the energy of others? How do I ground?

I stand or sit or even lie down. I close my eyes. Whatever part of me is touching the surface, in this case my butt and legs and feet, I start to imagine tendrils of my energy (mine are neon pink in my mind’s eye and I don’t know why) extending down, into the cushion, through the sofa, done through the floor, the neighbors apartment (sorry guys), down through the concrete pad, down into the earth, down down down down until the soil becomes rocks becomes boulders and I start to see the glow of the earth’s core… I let my tendrils grow tendrils, and more tendrils and I let them wend their way amongst the rocks and bones of the earth and then imagine them becoming straws, like roots, sucking up water but instead sucking up the earth’s core energy, up up up through the molten energy, up through the boulders, up up up until I feel it enter my body. I let it fill me with a golden pink light and let some of it rest in my heart.

As I fill up and I keep drawing more and more energy up from Mama, I start to release it from my crown chakra and send it fountaining back into the earth, creating a circuit of energy flowing from me to mom and me and back. I believe that THIS is what Jesus was talking about when he talked about “my cup runneth over.” It was him right? I can really get it flowing, I visualize it being pretty freaking sparkly too because why not? Like a rainbow of water drops in the sun or sparks. Sometimes I let it be a cool calm smooth flow that feels like wind, that’s for today when I’m too low energy to even take a good zap from Mom. I do this usually before I enter a place that I know will have high energy or after a rotten phone call at work or before picking up the phone. Over the years I’ve become able to do this entire thing in about 10 seconds. It used to take about five minutes. But once I start I can actually feel my body lock down to the earth, battening the hatches. I’ve been holding hands with folks in a circle and they’ve felt me lock down and gasped. Not bragging, just illustrating that if you’re awake and aware and open, we exchange it together. It’s why sex is sooooo intense and can either make you feel marvelous or suicidal. It why sacred sex is so crucial to our well being. We are literally letting someone into our core.

Once I have the cycle flowing, I set the intention that it continue doing that for a certain amount of time without my having to maintain it so that I can function in this plane of reality and still receive and give the flow.

Think I’m cuckoo? Shrug. That’s cool. But I tell you it works and keeps me from using my own energy reserves, which are few more than ever these days, mama gives and I give back.

This next thing isn’t grounding but shielding. I envision myself surrounded, on the aural/astral plane, by a shiny somewhat flexible silver egg. I try to remember to sit and meditate on it, visualize it. I note where it’s been dented and scraped and stained and I visualize myself polishing and rubbing and washing it until it’s shiny as new sterling, glowing. This is my permanent shield and must be kept in good working order. I didn’t check my egg last night (or most of this year come to think of it, I’ve been cracked wide open, ugh) and I see this morning that not only is it not shiny but it’s only half inflated. Time for a tune up.

If I had done both of those exercises before the party last night, I probably wouldn’t have been so wired, jangled, when I got home. I might have slept better and I might not have felt hungover from absorbing the energy of some tipsy folks.

It takes practice but it’s a very cool thing. Everything, EVERYTHING, is energy and energy goes EVERYWHERE. And EVERYTHING IS CONNECTED. There is NO separation, that is the illusion of being human, that we aren’t connected. But we are, for good or ill, and the more we know how to care for ourselves, the happier we will be. Through and around you, it’s what it does, for we ourselves are simply energy with a little carbon and water thrown in, also forms of energy. It’s why I believe science and God are very close to becoming ONE. We’re right at the crux of a huge realization and transition. If we don’t do ourselves in first.

The biggest energy wave in the universe is the energy wave of love. You can tap into it even faster than Mother Earth. Ride the wave. It’s energy, love. God is love, love is God, and it’s all energy waves. All connected, ebbing and flowing….

coming soon… Energy Vampires

Nephew’s Birthday

One of my fondest memories of time spent with my nephew is the time we spent last October and November on his last visit from France.  He and I spent some time making things and one of the things he made with Sculpy was a tree with an owl in it and the sun.  It was too fragile for him to take back with him so I have it.

While trying to figure out what to do for his birthday, I thought I would memorialize that day in such a way as to make it last a lifetime.  The creativity has really helped me get through the challenges of Dad’s stroke mixed with diabetes and alzheimer’s.

This is a cool bit of wood, framed up like a canvas with a 4-sided wooden frame but instead of covering it with canvas it’s got a wood cover so I can do woodburning… All that’s left to do is the oiling/varnish

Voila!

Taking It

Well, here I am. Taking it. That’s good news really. My emotions still resemble a roller coaster ride but this is progress.  It could be all mucking around in the pits and no high peaks with great views. Just an update on the personal side to catch you all up, I know I’ve been a bit silent.

Mr. Furnace and I talk every day.  I understand his motives for what he’s doing regarding his ex. He is a good man with a good heart and good motives. Whether she is up to the challenge or deserves this from him is neither here nor there. He has to live with himself and his actions and this is something he must do for himself to feel that he’s tied up all loose ends. I get that, I applaud that, but I still zapped those sheets. I am what I am. And he laughed. He loves me just the way I am, warts and all. While this is very challenging right now and some of it really pushes some of my buttons, I’m feeling really good about the work he and I are doing together and individually. I feel very good about he and I.

While I have not been offered a job yet, so far nothing has come to happy fruition, I’ve had more interviews in the past couple months than I had in the previous two years. Many interviews and all in my field. I’m still applying for jobs at places like the local Fred Meyer and would be glad to have one there but the interest is all in my field and there is a good amount of it I think. I had a phone interview today that went quite well and had three applications accepted this week and pushed to the next level. Things are flowing and as long I stay as positive as I can something is going to change soon. Not IF I get a job but WHEN I get a job as a friend pointed out to me last week.

I’ve made a lot of new friends this year. People who really do seem to enjoy my company. I’m asked to chair meetings, join others for lunch, participate. I’m invited. I needed that so very much. To feel some sense of belonging in a time when I was feeling very left out.

I’m really moving in the direction of making big changes in my spiritual life and practice. I will always be a tree hugging dirt kissing nature lover and worshiper but that’s about all I can commit to at the moment. We shall see how this progresses. I’m not feeling the lurve in anything but the most simple living moment by moment.

My mom and I are doing well, ever since I shared my story about the adoption inventory, she’s been on my side and very supportive. Dad is becoming more confused as the days go by but he’s really keeping his good attitude and is a pleasant guy to be around. His situation really touches my heart. Bro and I are doing very VERY well, our relationship is quite solid and mutual and it feels good.

I made almost all the Yule presents I’m giving this year with a couple exceptions like the books I got Dad and the Polar Bear on a runaway sled that poops jelly beans for the nephew. I am a great auntie, one of my favorite roles ever.

So it isn’t all sadness and processing of old damage, not by any means. My needs are met and met well. I have a warm safe place to live, plenty of food (too much this time of year! so I’ve been able to share that with those who have much less), I have the love a good man, the love of many friends, Miss Mitty is doing well although I’m keeping an eye on her, and there are job prospects. Life is good and I am grateful. If this is taking it I guess I can be grateful. Twist my arm why don’t you…

And with that I leave you with TED’s  _The Three A’s of Awesome!!!

The Astonishing Thing IS…

You’ve been reading my posts about how my head works. They include some of the things I think about my own lovability. I’m certain I’m not alone, that some of you have at least a moment or a thought like that once a year. Hopefully not daily like I do but there must be some sort of recognition or identification.

What my head says and what my reality is can be so diametrically opposed it really IS astonishing.

Here is my reality (the one that is in addition to relationship challenges and being fired):

  • Three readers have sent me stuff, unasked for, out of the goodness of their hearts. Because they want to help, to support, to show their love and appreciation to a total stranger who has some how managed to touch their lives across the globe. Another has offered. For nothing in return but the sharing of the goodness and love.
  • A woman today asked me I was going to be at my usual Friday night meeting because she has a newcomer guy who needs to see that women with recovery are cool. And she wanted me to be there. I wasn’t going because I did a nooner today, had a meeting after the meeting, AND tomorrow is our yard sale, but jeez, now I GOTTA.
  • Another woman, TODAY, and I went out to coffee. I’ve thought she was cool and all kinds of wonderfulness for the last year and she has been having a tough time too. Many of the women in the program have dropped her like a hot potato because of a decision she made that actually IS rather radical according to AA’s guidelines. When she needed them most, they abandoned her. Boy could I relate to that. We met for coffee and she asked me to be her sponsor because her sponsor fired her over it. I was all YAY! but on the condition that we are friends, helpers, teachers and students for each other, that friendship be the overriding dynamic. YAY! The deal here is if folks are afraid that her decision is going to cause her to drink again, shouldn’t they be there to pick her up if she falls??? That’s what I thought. I’m going to be there for her if and when she needs me and have fun with her in the meantime. We are finding our way in the challenges that many years of spiritual growth in the program are putting in our paths.
  • I got asked to speak and lead a meeting a week ago and the guy didn’t know me so he asked if I had three months or more, a requirement to speak.  Another guy said, “Oh her? She? Can TALK. Good choice.”  Since I think what HE says is pretty cool, that was an honor and a half. Today he said I should be wearing his jewelry, evidently he’s a silversmith among other things and all his cool stuff that he wears is his. Another artist. Always looking for opps to trade too. Skulls and big chunky silver stuff. Whee!!
  • A friend hired me to develop her website. Small but fun and still a challenge. She’s more excited than I am.
  • My cousin’s ex girlfriend contacted me today telling me how wonderful she thinks I am and how sorry she was to hear about my job.  And to suggest we get together to have coffee and a drive through the autumn foliage in one of our northern valleys.

I get feedback all the time that I am loved. ALL. THE. TIME. WTF?? Most of the feedback I’ve been getting has been in the last year and a half and not from the people who were in my life in a conscious way.  Lots of it comes from you! I am far more grateful than you may ever know. The tide is shifting and the love is coming from unexpected places.

What I need is to be mindful. To start writing these things down. I started a little book with all the good stuff that I get from D to remind me when I go crazy that what I think isn’t necessarily real. I will start in the back with the stuff that everyone else says and does.

And thanks go out to Mr. Furnace. Who deserves his own paragraph, not a bullet point. Who read my previous post and said, “Wow. That’s quite a statement. Let it all hang out baby.”  See what I mean? I’m crazy…  😉

Coming up for air

Literally.  It seems that the stuff in a fire extinguisher, and several were used, works by sucking the oxygen out of the air.  So not only was the basement missing oxygen but every single thing was covered with fire extinguisher dust, smoke dust, and then the dust of a decade of a never cleaned law office.  The insurance company sent in three women to clean this horror show of a wreck room.  Bottles of white out, pens, envelopes, 10 years of boxes of software, 5″ floppy disks, books books books.  A nightmare.

My brother, who arrived Wednesday night, and I have been cleaning out the garage for 2 days.  Four big loads in a huge rented pickup truck later, we are still not done.  Two to the dump, don’t think for a minute that throwing things in a landfill makes me anything but miserable, and two trips to our local thrift store.  He’s not had any sleep and I seem to have caught a cold.  This afternoon we will tackle it again.  Some of the boxes I’m sorting go back to junk mail from 1997.  OMG.   I can’t even begin to illustrate the clutter and packratedness.

On the flip side, it’s super good to have my brother here.  Together we can do what alone would have done us in.

This is not us but it was the photo that closest resembled what we’re dealing with…

Add in six trunks full of everything from great art paper to coffee tins full of nails plus 2 kayak racks, 10 boxes of various poisonous chemicals, baskets galore, and perhaps one box of stuff we’re keeping and well, *sob* and yet  *woohoo!*

The fire has catalyzed some serious action.  The faux ceiling in the bathroom is down and we are hiring an electrician to take care of that fire hazard that is our lighting asap.  Also, it looks like I’m going to be able to move into the basement finished rooms and have basically my own apartment with a shared kitchen upstairs.  That won’t happen overnight but it will happen in the next couple months and I’m pretty excited about getting my stuff out of storage and having something that looks like my life back in this area.  I’ve been living in a 10×10 room that is really like living in a hotel room for a year now.  It will be a year March 7th.  I’m really done with this and hope that I get to have some say in the paint color.

We did find a box of silver coins from 1883 – 1964.  None of them appear to be of much value for their dates or their condition but I’m going to sell them for their melt value.  Tons of furniture is going to be sold and what doesn’t sell is going to the thrift store or the dump.  It has to be done, there is no choice.  And most of this has to happen before Monday at 5pm.  Bro’s flight home leaves Tuesday morning.  What a champ he’s been and thank god for his force of nature presence in this project.

My parents are a little bewildered and stressed over this whole thing as one can well imagine but they have been very, very brave and let us make most of the decisions for them.  They’ve stayed away for the most part and just let us muscle our way through and they are to be commended because they simply couldn’t do it themselves and this is painful for them.  They are embarrassed, ashamed, and relieved.

See you all later next week when the work is done, bro has flown home, and I’m working on a cool project that is mine and perhaps in a space where I can actually work on larger projects.  We are healing from the trauma of 30 years of shame and the horror that is a wild fire in your home.

P.S.  My camera stopped functioning. About 6 months ago my brother sent my dad a camera but it has never been used.  Bro saw that Dad will never be able to use it because it’s the part of dad’s brain that has left.  The figure it out part.  I have a new camera just like that.  *snap*  Thank you thank you.

I cleaned out my mom’s office, which was like the photo above all by myself and bought a new twin memory foam mattress so that Bro had a decent place to stay. He said he would have been royally pissed to have to spend $1000 to stay in a hotel for a week simply because there is so much clutter no one can move.

I’ve been working extremely hard, physically and mentally this entire week, and I am sore as hell but I’m pretty impressed at how my body is taking this.  Any one would be sore after inactivity but I was worried about my fibromyalgia and I feel pretty darned good all in all.

And I haven’t had a period in 8 weeks!  WOOHOO!   No migraines, no cramps, no pms, happy camper here.

Halleluah

I couldn’t get through this without sobbing.  One of my all time favorite songs, Halleluah heals me every time I hear it.  It is a song about love and healing and blessing.  But to hear K.D. Lang sing it when, where, and, in the end an additonal, why, for Nodar, well see if you can make it through dry eyed.  This? Was the voice and song of an angel in her bare feet.

I thought that the opening ceremony this year was the most amazing, most encompassing, most passionate, most inclusive I’ve seen.  This pagan sat there in awe as she watched the shaman drum life into being.  As the scenes unfurled before me in silence I could only be amazed and grateful to have witnessed the life span of Canada.

I don’t have television and was in a restaurant eating with some friends when I looked up to see the snow falling and the shaman walk out of the mist and start pounding the ground with his/her staff.  None of us needed the sound and most of the table sat and just watched, struck peaceful.

But I missed this part.  While I know that this was planned long in advance for me it added a special poignancy to the sadness of Nodar’s death that was underlying the ceremony.

I hope that I’ll be able to get my hands on a DVD of the entire ceremony as copyright is keeping it from being shown on YouTube.  Have it I must.