Much of it has to do with a conscious effort and new spiritual practice to bless everything and everyone. Ok, really, it's Spirit, yet my awareness is more present, focused and tuned in.
IT'S IN THE EYES
Monday, I took a brief road trip with my twin sister to Smalltown, Indiana, to visit a naturopath her co-workers rave about. It was a beautifully sunny day to weave up and down among the rolling pastures, neat farms, livestock, flea markets and forgotten villages. I needed a new perspective after a long winter of hibernating. We arrived early and had a brief wait in the front of the building, where all of the herbs are kept. Several locals strolled in looking for this tonic or that. We had our appointment together, but Carolyn gently insisted I go first. "Just like you pushed me out of the womb?" I jokingly asked.
Terri began by photographing each of my eyes. She practices iridology, which purports your health is recorded in the eyes. I was enamored with the photos and coaxed her into e-mailing me one. She seemed impressed with something about my eyes, though didn't name it. I scribbled a page or two of notes since she had many interesting things to day. Most rung with truth. Those that didn't personally, I could see were family traits. What interested me most, beyond her saying I had a strong structure and healthy heart, was her suggestion that the fibromyalgia is bacterial. That spoke to me not in a new-hope-this-will-fix-it way, but as a truth, one path no one else has uttered, let alone offered to treat – naturally. She bumped up my thyroid treatment, gave me an enzyme for digestion, olive-leaf oil for the bacteria and a sleep enhancer to get me off the Valerian root-melatonin and Benadryl roller coaster. I have had more energy this week. I am struggling with sleep, weaning off a cocktail of many years. However, I am giving it a go. Funny thing, at the beginning of my consultation, she looked at me and remarked: "You're always going and active, aren't you? And when you're done, you drop." I responded that I think of myself more as a contemplative, then remembered how my husband always reminds me that I never stop, unless physically forced to.
I think Terri calls it as she sees it and reminds me I am not sickly and helpless, the way my ego has ensnared me.
REMEMBERING TO FEEL BLESSED
Forgetting NOT to take the thyroid supplements before bed and mixing it with the sleep aid was a mistake that had me up and down all night. Tiredly, I drug myself to the pool, then off to meet my new workshop partner for our final planning session. We're presenting tomorrow (Saturday). Sunday we had been disappointed that no one showed up at our preview session, though we buoyed each other and left undaunted. This work seems like such a blessing and exactly what I am called to that it's not really work. Of course, there's lots to do and much effort exerted, but it's fun, playful and, even, prayerful. Before Monday's road trip, I'd popped into the studio to finish the wall-of-pain piece I'd created for the workshop. We'd gotten the ok to set it up in our venue and use it as a teaser. The owner loved it and it looked great. How could anyone resist? we thought. We have five souls coming tomorrow and are thrilled! I'd caught myself from becoming desperate and used prayer and blessings when it was only two on Tuesday. I also have my diligent partner to thank.
SEEING CLEARLY A SLOW PROCESS
Sunday, I'd left Quaker meeting (church) early, missing the business meeting, to co-host that intro workshop I mentioned earlier. In my absence, the congregation considered a ministry grant request from me for salary and rent for Artsy Fartsy Saturdays, the not-for-profit arts exploration I launched for local, at-risk kids. I'd had mixed feelings about attending. I wanted to be sure people had space to talk freely and me being there would, possibly, inhibit that. The 2 p.m. workshop made it a moot point.
Sailing busily through the week, testing a new supplement regiment and fighting something off, I hadn't thought much about Sunday's business meeting. Actually, I kept thinking I could call our minister when I had time; surely she'd know what happened. The plain white envelope with a neatly handwritten note on a yellow, legal half sheet wrapped around a check beat me to that call. The money, my FULL request, showed up in the mail with a lovely message from the treasurer. She's not one to gush and said how delighted the meeting was to put funds to such a good cause. I was overcome with joy, relief, tears, gratitude and feeling loved and blessed. Something I haven't felt in a very long time. It was wonderful. I did call our minister the next day to tell her how touched I was. "I wish you had been there, Cathy. There wasn't even a hiccup; people really have wanted to do this. We have been clear you have gifts, but, before Artsy Fartsy, they weren't focused. Clearly, they are now."
I can't even remember the number of clearness committees for ministry I have had in the last 12 years. I have struggled through a number of them, remaining unclear. This last round, however, was so pure and taught me that I have to be clear myself, not rely on others for that. They may help by asking questions, but not by giving advice or suggestions. My group was to have met the first Sunday in March with my request, but a winter storm cancelled worship and anything else that day. So, I e-mailed my proposal, for which I was crystal clear, to the committee and it went to ministry and counsel with their blessing. Apparently ministry and counsel recommended it to the business meeting and, WA-LA, it was approved. On one hand it seemed so easy, on the other, it has taken me along time to get here. My journey was to learn to ask for what I need. When I finally could, it was lovingly given. The next morning as I ticked off laps, I blessed the names and faces of everyone I could think of in my meeting.
ROOTING IN THE PRESENT
Today, as I prepped for tomorrow and blog, I received an intriguing phone call from someone I'd met a few weeks ago who uses shipping pods as gallery space. He's got an empty two-week slot and wonders whether there's a place around here the show can land. The longer I talked, the more excited I got. Wow, God, I thought, you had him call me! Then, please let me connect him or figure it out. In another time, I would have found it an annoyance. I am grateful to be clear, aware and grounded in the present. Amen.
Maybe there is something about my eyes.
• What is my experience of clarity?
• When have I been clear?
• When have I been anything but?
• When have I heard truth from unusual or unexpected sources?
• How do I express gratitude for the truth, clarity and blessings?
of a week,
and a new
*Years ago when I attended School of the Spirit and our small group named each other's gifts, my facilitator wrote this. I couldn't see it then. I am beginning to.
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