Google+ What I Made Today: February 2021

Friday, February 19, 2021

Things Un-welcomed and Cruel

Daddy watching over... in my officina.

Forty-six years.



And I still miss my daddy. 

I learned a lot this past year. Holistically. We all did, methinks, whether we're aware or not. And I learned some very personal, intimate, specific-to-me things too. Less than a year ago I learned things about relationships that I never knew. Things I was content - so content - not knowing. Things I had no interest in knowing. Things personal to me that were shared with others before they were shared with me. Things personal that were dropped on me without a shred of check-in. Things shared from a person and space of cruelty. Self aggrandizing cruelty toward others, dead and alive, as well as toward me. Things - so far, anyway - unforgivable. 

I learned of things un-welcomed and cruel. Things that have been a piece of my work this past year, work yet unfinished.

Things with which I wish I could chat with my daddy, and with my mom, too. And, sure, I chat with their spirits. My daddy's is quiet, as in silent. My mom's is, unsurprisingly, more vocal and validating. Anyhoo...

My daddy was a man of care and compassion, despite his Nixon-loyal-republican leanings. He was, methinks, a true gentleman, a man of his word, a man loyal to the oaths he carried. I say this having never known him in my adult years (whatever that means). So it's not just that I desire to chat with him, I long for an exchange, a true conversation with him. I'd really appreciate the opportunity to tap into his flavor of justice, justice potentially rooted in that care and compassion I mention. 

If you've followed this blog for any aggregate of time you'll likely know that I embrace living in the  mystery, real and imaginal, for lack of better phrasing. I love the nuance of life, and so much of my work - personal and collective - is rooted in that reality that I love - the mystery 'n' nuance - no matter how challenging or painful it might be exploring all the aspects of my landscape. In that landscape I do my best to pick up or roll over every rock to examine its entire perimeter, and then scratch 'n' dig in the space beneath to explore there as well. It's the kind of work that takes time and effort, and that doesn't offer definitive responses - or answers, if you prefer - from which to act. Rather, it's the kind of work that offers insight, perspective - wisdom, if you prefer - from which to make choices. 

I feel my daddy may have engaged in such work as this. Thus his capacity for care and compassion. My mom was more good/bad, right/wrong, often (though not always) lacking an openness for nuance. Thus her capacity for (what I might call) brisk judgement. And as the explorer of my landscape, I see value in "both" of these... approaches, practices, behaviors. And I possess "both." Yet prefer "one."

But I babble.

My desire to engage conversation with the spirit of my daddy rests in the desire to discuss with him these things un-welcomed and cruel. For his caring and compassionate perspective, to be sure, but also for the fact that he played a part in the story, and shared life with one who continues to be demonized by the storyteller. The un-welcomed and cruel storyteller who never even owned the story. The story likely rooted in some truth, but - clearly, without doubt or question - seasoned generously with lies, cruel and un-welcomed. It was never her story to tell. Still never. Always never. 

I sure wish I could share a whisky with the ol' boy now. To speak of things un-welcomed and cruel. Or to just tell him that I love him still. 


Monday, February 1, 2021

February, February, February...

I don't care what linear, logical, conventional measures of time say, February is the longest month of the calendar year. 

In the best of times, February can be immensely trying. Even in days BC (Before Covid-19), so many of us would feel the feels of longing 'n' loneliness. In days BC, when I was blessed with space in which community would gather, February was expressed by many as a lonely and challenging month. In those days it was a month when drop-in visits picked up, as well as scheduled sessions, not to mention the month when community gathers were consistently well attended. 

In my part of the world February is the final full month of winter. It is a month that many of us - consciously or not - sense the stirrings of spring, the green feelings within that long for the green stirrings without, like the alliums in our kitchens 'n' pantries; we feel something sprouting that has no ordinary earthy space yet to ground. It is a time that calls us to be imaginative, to create imaginal space for our February stirrings to settle 'n' root. 

This can be challenging even in times when we're able gather and share our February stories, green hugs, compassionate smiles. This year, as we - with healing in our hearts - continue to isolate, discourage discretionary gatherings, especially in indoor venues, and as we hide our smiles behind masks with 6+ feet between us, we face exceptional February challenges, like none in memory. I, for one, await days here in the damp, breezy chill of southern New England when an outdoor fire will offer enough comfort to invite a loved one or two to sit beside me, safely distanced, to share a cuppa, a simple meal, a visible smile... and to hear the healing music of collective laughter... quite possibly the shared Medicine I most miss.

Yet there's other shared Medicine that sustains me: The botanical Medicines of February, the mid-winter Medicines of Nona Gaia. This is the month in which the seed-starting dance picks up its tempo. And I am ready to dance with these familiar friends. So 
blanking ready. I could go on and on here, but instead I invite you to join the dance, especially if you've never danced this dance. Find a vessel, fill it with soil, and place a seed (or a few) within it. Water it, breathe into it, sing to it, and whisper your secrets to it. Dance with it. Tend to and care for that vessel and all it holds, and join forces - quite feminine - to nurture mystical life into ordinary manifestation. Life, that when reciprocal relationship sustains, offers bounty to nourish more - much more - than our bellies. Dance together. In February, and beyond. 

For me, this may just be the most sacred of Medicine that February offers. It is light in darkness. Always. And especially in these dark days we all share. Dance together.