Breathing and Beauty
“If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, live in the breath.”
Its interesting to realize I haven't posted anything here on my blog site in 16 months. The pandemic began and life became complex and sticky. Everything I thought I'd mastered in the way of my work in the world had to be done differently and the learning curve seemed insurmountable at times. Then, just when I felt like I had some control, the Tower card fell.
If you're not familiar with Tarot, I should explain that the Tower card usually features a tower collapsing, on fire, being struck by lightening or some other form of destruction. It's most common interpretation is chaos, or sudden and dramatic change. In my case, that's a bit of an understatement.
In December of 2020, I received an in-no-uncertain-terms message from Spirit that it was time to leave the spiritual center where I'd been the minister for 11 years. It wasn't the first time I'd been told. In fact, I had planned to leave a year earlier but the pandemic struck and I simply couldn't bring myself to exit when the people I loved were going through so much. So I stayed. Nearly a year later, when things were moving smoothly, I heard the whisper of truth yet again. "Your time here is done." I knew it - to my core. So, in January of 2021, I told my community I would be leaving in early summer.
In February I went to Maui on a business trip and, without going into all the details, I dug my heels into the sands of paradise in an effort to be stronger than the ocean and got caught in a wild wave that rolled me head over tea-kettle to the shore. My sweetheart and some very kind lifeguards pulled me to my feet as I tried to breath and escape the crashing over my head. My legs were so wobbly and painful I could hardly stand. Bruises and pulled hamstrings made the rest of the time on the island incredibly uncomfortable.
In March, Mark caught Covid -19 and graciously shared it with me. I was sick for seven weeks (well into May), had pneumonia, was put on oxygen at home and had to get a chest x-ray in order to make sure the pneumonia was cleared before I could get off the oxygen and return to normal.
Normal was not the outcome. Instead, the x-ray revealed a mass in my lungs that, after a few more weeks of specialists and testing, turned out to be lung cancer. I was diagnosed on June 25th. On June 27th, I gave my last sermon. On the 29th, I turned in my keys. Two weeks later, on July 15th, I had the cancer and a small wedge of my lung surgically removed. Its expected to be curative.
Today, I am 11 weeks into the recovery process and I've learned a few things.
- I'm mortal
- Breathing anchors us into the present moment (you can't breath in the past or the future - only right now)
- Patience is so much harder to give yourself than it is to give to others
- Surgery changes your mind as much as it changes your body
- Self care is more important than almost anything
Covid-19 saved my life. Not many people can say that. Actually, Mark is certain HE saved my life by bringing Covid-19 home to me! I suppose there is some truth to that - but don't tell him I said so. I'll never hear the end of it!
October is beginning and I have rounded a corner. I feel so much better than I did a few weeks ago and I'm hoping the last few months of 2021 will be blissfully calm and full of warm drinks, good friends, and joy. I am back to work as a consultant, building a new website, and will launch a new project in January. I have weekends with my sweet husband and sometimes with my kids - when they have time to come and visit. As fall takes its place in the seasonal cycle, I'm sitting on my porch watching the natural world reveal Her true colors and listening to the birdsong I will miss when migration occurs. A deer visited this evening!
There is SO much beauty.
And I'm living in this present moment. Breathing. Breathing again. Breathing into this wonderful body I call home.