available swearwords

Sometimes there just are not nearly enough of those.  Of late, as I wonder if I’ve finally lost my witty sense of humor while realizing I talk like a sailor half the time, as I say, of late I find myself back to the basic meditation regimen of telling myself: breathe in/breathe out.  So far I’m following my own orders.

Still.  In our ongoing health crises I found myself looking for, of all things, an enema bag.  I wish I’d taken pictures of people’s expressions during this quest- you’d have thought I was asking for a sex toy made out of plutonium.  Apparently everyone up here just has their colon removed: End of story.  An entire storefront full of ostomy supplies in our little shopping center but nothing in the, er, preventive aisle.

This quest will continue today, and boy I tell you I can hardly wait.  It may require going into Walmart, which I NEVER do but in an emergency this is how the evil empire triumphs, isn’t it?  They have something you can’t do without at critical junctures.  I’m hoping for a quick run in and out because if I have to ask for an enema bag one more time it may be the end of me.   I may resort to explaining what I want it for, just throw caution to the winds sort of thing.  In my experience this can be fun but it never ends particularly well- it seems to reinforce the other person’s sense that they are right to hiss and make the sign of the cross at me.

That actually did happen, once and bigtime.   An artist I admired, an Italian (which is relevant in terms of historical world view), took one look at me when we were introduced by my friend, his art dealer, and actually shrieked and made a small sign of the cross with his hands.  NO! NO! STREGA! NO TALK! My friend was, of course, completely dumbfounded and I took comfort in that since we’ve known each other all our lives.   At that time, things being what they were, people in the gallery who overheard were asking things like, what? she’s a LIQUEUR???  I, of course, was humming and buffing my nails in an unobtrusive manner, just thinking that sooner or later everyone would stop staring and murmuring about the meaning of the word strega (Witch, primarily, liqueur secondarily).  You can see my trepidation then, can’t you Gentle Reader? at the thought of going into a store here and explaining that I want an enema bag for an ayurvedic treatment protocol?  That will only be more fun than actually administering said treatment.  (An eminently sensible treatment, too.  Herbs and broth can be used this way to help strengthen someone who has been ill for some time.)

Oh, well.  At least I have discovered two excellent soups for such challenging dinner circumstances.  Providing nourishment as well as roughage, these are really every day champs.  Soup the First may be found in Deborah Madison’s VEGETABLE SOUPS, under the name of Sick Person’s Soup.  Originally from RAIN FOREST REMEDIES, this stuff rocks.  Cabbage (half a mid sized one), a carrot and piece of celery, medium onion. a LOT of garlic and several cups of water.  Boil for 20 minutes, then add a LOT of ginger and more diced garlic, lime juice and white miso.  I used peanut butter since I was out of miso.  This was unbelievably delicious, even without any fat or added salt.  Soup the Second is an old Chinese standby: Jook.  (Mark Bittman, HOW TO COOK EVERYTHING VEGETARIAN) This is heavenly and in a rice cooker? The no brainer of one’s dreams.  A half cup of rice (I used Jasmine) and 3 cups of water, salt, some sliced ginger and mushrooms (shitake or button both work), turn the cooker on and in about an hour you’ve got Jook.  You can add a bit more water at the end if it is too dense, and other vegetables of course.  I happened to make small meatballs to top this, but with or without anything it is great.  Soy sauce and sesame oil are good on it too.

While we are dancing on the edge, then, at least we are eating sensibly, if meagerly and intermittently in the Partner’s case.  It’s all a Big Mystery but one thing is for sure, somehow we do keep keeping on even when we don’t really know exactly how or why.  This has, of course, made me think ever more about death, especially since the person who recently died was one of my clients.  It is always difficult to “lose” someone, even though of course they aren’t lost at all, and if we really could control life and death this would be quite a different planet.  This time it appeared to me in a much broader perspective.  Death is inevitable for all of us, and we encounter many things which we can withstand to greater or lesser extents every day we live.  It is always with us, though, and we are always dying every moment we are alive- we change, we discard things, we are born to new experiences.  The physical death really IS a “change of clothes” as the Dalai Lama says.  The thing of it is, what we ought to focus on with each other, and in any healing work or art, is the quality of each moment as we live it up to the point of that change of clothes.  The nature of the time we have is what is crucially important, how we feel about what is happening to us and thus about ourselves.   This is a level each individual can work with, even if it isn’t easy.  I’m thinking that if we have found those points of grace, we might say, in our daily lives, that change of clothes seems “right” when it happens, no matter how it happens.  This may be what dropping the resistance really means, and perhaps that keeping our decks clear energetically is the real point of life in that it leads us to the big, unknown transition (and to all the smaller, daily ones) with as much balance as is possible for us.  There’s a lot to let go of even as we embrace it, and there is a lot of falling down, getting up, falling down again.  That force that makes us look up at the stars and keep going is what intrigues me now.

 

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