Monday, August 23, 2010

Full Moon Fever

It's Monday. I feel fresh, just back from a great weekend with a "tribe", I am enjoying the crispness of fall you can feel in the air today and just feel happy. Helps that I am making dinner for one of my favorite people, my mother.
I spent part of my morning today with a dear friend. She arrived in the midst of the morning chaos, or whatever you might call it. Kids restless to do something, me trying to get the house organized after a weekend away, bags still to be unpacked and stuff all around the house that needs to be put back in its proper place.  I loved that she just stopped by, because she had some free time, that she willingly joined the mix of chaos, parenting, crazy kids and mess that we call life. She sat on my couch and we talked...shared stories of vacations, life. I let the mess sit and gave my full attention (as full as I can with my 3 children in the vicinity) to her and felt grateful to connect. Letting go of what could wait...the laundry, the to do list, the grocery shopping, making beds, prepping for my late morning yoga know, the endless list. Letting it go set a tone for my whole day that has helped it to flow with ease. I love that saying about how when you live your life at the right rate, the path is leveled before you, it's effortless. I can't say that my life today was effortless, but it did involve ease.
Somewhere in our conversation this morning, my friend said "That's what is so great about you, Celisa." My heart swelled. How often to we tell each other what we think is so great about one another, how much we love each other, how inspirational or fabulous or incredible we are? Hopefully, we tell our partner, or our kids if we have them, but how often do we say it to our friends. It feels so good to be loved, to feel seen, to feel connected to another human being on a soulful level. It's a gift.

This poem speaks to this desire we all have to love and be loved.
With That Moon Language, by Hafiz
Admit something
Everyone you see, you say to them, "Love me."
Of course you do not do this outloud,
otherwise, someone would call the cops.
Still though, think about this, this great
pull in us to connect
Why not become the one
Who lives with a full moon in each eye
That is always saying with that sweet moon language
What every other eye in this world is dying to hear.

Looks like a full moon out there tonight...perfect timing.
Thanks for tuning in, for being a piece of the puzzle that keeps me feeling connected.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

In My Head

I've spent a fair amount of time in my head lately. I'm not sure if its because I have had little time in my body lately...I know we always inhabit our body, but since mine has been out of whack, the time I've spent in it has been more about pain than enjoyment, so I've stayed put in my head instead.
I've been pondering relationships, how they ebb and flow, change with time and how sometimes the hardest times in a relationship are the ones in between the past and the you know how it was or used to be, but now it's different, and you aren't quite sure what it is now, or how you feel about it not being what it was. In yoga teaching, it is often said that the most injuries occur during transitions between poses. It's making a lot of sense to me right now. We do well when we know what "the rules" are. It doesn't matter if it's a yoga pose, a friendship, dress code, whatever, when we know what the rules of the game are, the boundaries, what we've got to work with, it's way easier to navigate our way through things. It's usually insignificant as to whether we like the rules or not, because we know what we've got to work with and so we can find our way through it. It's when we don't have the rule book, that things begin to feel a little tricky..might I say, vulnerable. And that is how I am feeling right now, which is a hard place for me to sit, I tend to want to retreat when I feel vulnerable, but I am making a conscious effort to stay present in the transition of a relationship where I feel like I've lost the rule book.
I've also been thinking alot about the transition back to school. I need order when things get busy, or more accurately, I need organization - maybe they are the same thing? I need meal plans, my days sorted out...when I will do the grocery shopping, which day I will make the Costco run, who will watch kids when I teach yoga. There is a lot of juggling that goes on as the activities increase in number. I made a to do list yesterday of things I need to do, stuff like getting my daughter signed up for dance class, paying bills, school supply shopping, renewing library books, etc. I read off the things I had checked off to my husband and he said something along the lines of "Wow. If I was home with the kids it would be more like 1. breakfast, 2. lunch, 3. do dishes. And I'd be glad if I could get all that done." As a mom, I know I juggle a lot of balls. And most of the time, I feel good at it or at least competent. Being sick for a few days, I feel like I fell off my a-game and have been sort of throwing it together..meals, etc. School is right around the corner and I am sure I will have my hands full with 2 kids in 2 different schools, 2 different schedules, my prevention work back in action and a busy life to boot.
I best get out of my head and get busy!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Bite

Random ordeal...I got bit by something 10 days ago when we were in Idaho. Not certain what it was, but I think it was a horse fly. I actually got bit a couple of times, once on my back and once on my inner thigh, a few inches above my knee. It was a Friday, I didn't think much of it. My leg got swollen around the site of the bite, it was itchy. A couple of days later, it was still extremely itchy, had started to feel pretty tender and was bright red. I still didn't think much of it, assumed it was some kind of an allergic reaction to whatever bit me. Day 6, post bite, rolls around and I now have an open wound that is oozing (I know, not for the faint at heart). My husband told me on day 5, I should see a doctor. I called and made an appointment for the end of the week which would be day 8, thinking I would end up canceling it because I'd be all better. By the evening of day 6, my husband thinks I should see a doctor right away. I decide to phone the on-call nurse for my insurance - a 24 hour hot line I have used 3 or 4 times in the last couple of months, I love it. The on call nurse has saved me a doctor visit at least twice, recently, and my $25 co-pay, and in this case got me to seek help when I really needed it and didn't think I did. I ended up going to the ER on the evening of Day 6, thinking they would probably just give me some thing to put on it and send me home...little did I know I had a nasty infection growing in my leg.
The ER doctor took one look at it and said, "Oh honey, you have a serious infection going on in there." She proceeded to tell me there was a walnut-in-its-shell sized abscess underneath the site of the bite and she would have to open it up, culture it, pack it with wicking and would put me on antibiotics and prescribe some pain meds. Oh, "and follow up with your doctor TOMORROW to make sure it is getting better and we are giving you a tetanus shot." I told her that I wouldn't likely take the pain meds, she told me to fill the prescription, just in case. Thank goodness I listened to her advice! She then proceeded to numb my leg with five injections. I thought numbing was supposed to prevent pain, not inflict it. I won't go into the gory details of what she did next, but it wasn't pretty and felt like minor surgery, scalpel and all.
I returned home a little shell shocked, how did this silly bug bite get so ugly so fast? I was in a fair amount of pain when the numbness wore off, and thankful for the pain meds I took faithfully for the next few days. The next day, day 7, I went to see my doctor to discover things were not looking better, were actually worse and if we didn't get this thing under wraps quickly I was going to end up in the hos-pi-tal...inpatient style with an IV drip of antibiotics. I started thinking this was serious. My doctor put me on another antibiotic, in case the one from the ER wasn't the right one since we were not seeing any improvement, the culture hadn't come back yet, so it was hard to say. She drew a circle around the swelling with a sharpie, so when I came back on day 8, we would know which direction this thing was headed. I promptly filled the second antibiotic prescription and started it.
Day 8 I wake up and the redness is worse, the swelling has spread as much as an inch around parts of the sharpie mark on my leg. I feel horrible. I spend most of the day in bed, sleeping or in and out of a fog. As I zone in and out of the fog, my mind begins to go to scary places. You hear stories of random things like this where people end up hospitalized, dying, being paralyzed, having their internal organs shut down...infections going systemic. I kept thinking about my kids...what if I had to stop nursing Elsie? What if I had to be in the hospital for weeks? How would Sean keep working and who would take care of them? What if I died and my kids had to grow up without me? I realized somewhere in the midst of my mind running wild, I was more worried about what I would leave behind, about what I would miss, than I was about me. I wasn't as scared about what dying would feel like as I was about what life would be like without me for my kids, my husband, my parents, about what it would be like for them to lose me. Funny thing this ego is, eh? I was worried.
I made my husband come with me to the doctor on day 8. The doctor said things were not looking better, but the culture had come back and it was a strep infection that antibiotic number 2 should kill, and since I hadn't yet been on it for 48 hours, she was going to give me until the morning of day 9 before hospitalizing me.
Thank goodness, I woke up on day 9, after 12 hours of sleep, redness dulling and swollen-ness shrinking significantly. Hallelujah, I am not dying!
Today is day 10 I feel 100 times better. The hole in my leg is still nasty, but improving. I have some energy back and I feel human again. It's good to be alive...nothing like a little brush with a horse fly bite to make you grateful for your health!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Lake

I returned home last Sunday after spending 9 days with my husband's family at "the Lake". It's been an annual vacation for my husband, at least since he was in his teens, and maybe even farther back than that. Two, sometimes 3, families come together, 3 generations of people, to play, relax, unwind, commune, to simply be. It started out as a long weekend for us, 5 or 6 years ago and has grown into a not long enough week sandwiched between two weekends. Over the years all 3 families, that started this tradition so long ago, have grown, the kids have married and had kids of their own, and we are never quite sure how to describe the generations...are we the adults? parents? we feel like "the kids" but we now have kids and so the "parents" are really grandparents, but they aren't sure they are ready to be labeled as such...doesn't really matter I suppose. There are 3 generations and I wouldn't be surprised if someday we are doing this with 4.
It is a unique experience, being at the Lake. It always feels like there is some healing for me, some forgiveness or letting go, directed toward myself or something I've been harboring with another. Some layers of my own onion get peeled back as the days go by, that allow me to go deeper inward and expose more of my true self, my fears, wounds, heartaches, dreams, deep love. It's as if there is this great sense of safety there that allows me to expose it all. I always go wondering what our time will bring, but somehow without expectations. I am never disappointed. The family that owns the place at the Lake are gracious hosts, you never feel like a guest, you feel like you just belong there.
There were seven little girls and 1 boy all under the age of 7. They play like a pack of wild children, as they should. I marvel at how inventive they are when removed from the day to day surroundings of home, toys, etc. They go on nature walks, play on the beach, in the water, explore the "woods".
At one point in the week, I stood on the front porch, looking out toward the lake. My 7 month old daughter, Elsie, was sitting on a blanket on the lawn being entertained by Sammy, 3 years old, that loved on her all week. My 3 year old son, Willis, was on the dock fishing with his Dad, and my almost 6 year old, Ruby, was on the beach, playing with her cousins. I smiled inside, grateful for these experiences my children and I are blessed to have. Elsie got her first tooth. Ruby passed the "swim test" (which means you get to be on the dock or the beach without a life jacket). Willis discovered he could swim with his life jacket on after being bounced off the ski trainer by a big wave...brave little soul he is. Sean and I surfed behind a boat, a first for both of us. I tubed with my 14 year old nephew and his cousin, got bounced off, but not injured. I took long walks with my sister-in-laws (always a treat when we get to have uninterrupted talks without children), laughed in the kitchen with my father-in-law, who despite having pneumonia continued to be his jolly, generous self. Shed tears on the porch with my mother-in-law as she told my husband and I what great kids we have and what great parents we are. (Parenting is such hard work, it's such affirmation whenever anyone recognizes how much effort you put in to it.) It's like being away together for that long, you get to unwind, exhale and let the busyness, worries of day to day life stay behind and just be. It's such a gift, my kids look forward to it all year and we start talking about next year at the lake before we even make it home.