Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Enough to make me smile—the mouth of babes

The following is a beautiful letter/email I just received from my sister in law. My 11 year old niece has written a poem in my honor! 

As if the angels descend to tap me on the shoulder when my doubt is at it's all time highest! Ashley speaks in my ear— thank you Pauline for sharing with me!

Hi Elizabeth,
Ashley's English class has been doing a unit on poetry for the last two
weeks and so today they had to read their poems out to the class and so hers
was for her aunt who has leukemia - when she told me I asked but which aunt
has leukemia and so she said Elizabeth. Anyway, I wanted to share the poem
with you. She said her teacher really liked it and had to wipe her eyes at
the end of it.

I hope you are doing well and feeling a little better and hopefully the
Chemo is over. 

Here is the poem...

Don't Let Their Weakness Bring You Down -

for her aunt who has breast cancer...although she told the class it was for
her aunt who had leukemia...

As you walk through they try to bring you down,
But don't let their voices get in and kill your own sound,
You are strong and can make it through,
You are the one that went straight through the pouring rain,
And followed your heart through the pain,
Why quit when you've made it this far,
Why not stick around and make it through one more battle scar,
In the midst of the black night sky you are the shining star,
Don't quit and fall down on the dark and winding stair,
Just meet the hardship with a stubborn glare,
You must go beneath the burning coal,
Because further down there is a fire in your soul.

I liked it and hope that you will be okay with it. You have had a big
impression on her and we hope all is well!

Lots of love to you,

Friday, May 20, 2011

no more to say

[new video and stills from the 4th infusion, including a view of my studio window from the chemo suite - to come] until then…

It's OVER!!!!!!!! OVER OVER OVER !! ! now the nitty-gritty next two weeks of down time. Funny # 1 & 2 didn't have this dread fatigue like # 3, and doc says # 4 will follow suit, sleeping way too much will double efforts with Qi-Gong breathing walking and rejuvenating! 
there is little left to say that won't be simply chronicling "suffering this, and suffering that"—how we do our best, keep quiet when that is the most helpful and move on with grace and now a long cycle of true self-healing begins- the procedures and treatments behind, but the deeper life long habit breaking and new patterns that will evolve, emerge and enliven will become my daily work. Reflection, exercise, diet investigation, meditation, cooking for others, cooking up my life's intention, of right-livlihood, so that one day community change and the vows I make to help others may realize- moving on, speaking less, listening more, practising patience which is the remedy for anger. 
The nurses sang to me today and blew bubbles, "Hit the road Jack and don't you come back no more no more no more no more- 4 x 'no more's that was the charm of the spell. 
I PROMISED them they wouldn't see me again!

I'm on the ROAD - Jack! The road to a cancer free future, with lots of work on fearlessness, body-love, a glorious new morning awaits us each day, may I be of benefit to each of you here on this page and circling that out then a benefit to everyone you know on your community circle and the friends of friends, and each of you a benefit to me, it reverberates like concentric circles rippling out from a stone of love tossed in the lake of stillness, tossed in the lake of chaos, a lake of action, a lake of withdrawal, the circling with nothing left out not even cancer, or the end of cancer. Not even chemo or the END OF CHEMO! Celebration. elation, emancipation!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

New Comment window

Dear All- I have reorganized the comments window so it is much easier to leave comments- than before! I discovered an error I'd made in the settings pane. I hope to see more dialogue and stories of your own that my postings bring up! Blessings to each of you and prayers!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Maze Day • Night Walk

For a dear friend and father— Dr. Fred Stricker, beloved by all having had the privilege to meet him.

this post is in honor of Meredith's dad, who left us in 2010, and we celebrate his life today May 18, his birthday, AND the 32nd anniversary of the first performance collaboration between M and I -
Night Walk-
I leave you with the Navajo Shooting Star Chant as I prepare fr the next and final INFUSION this Friday:

[round each bundle of feathers or plants, depending on form of ceremony. When the bundles are ready (and the number of the bundles increases with each night of the rite, five on the first, seven on the second, nine on the third, etc., and there is usually an uneven number) the Medicine Man takes up a bundle and presses it to the patient’s right foot, singing as he does it, and pulling the slip-knotted cord loose at the same time. He then takes another bundle and does the same on the other foot, then on the knees, thighs, breast, back, hands, shoulders, head and mouth. When this is finished, he takes up all the cords together and draws them from one hand to the other over these different parts of the patient’s body and sometimes waves the feathers round and over the patient’s head. The patient drinks an infusion of herbs and inhales some incense and the rite is over. The details vary but the form is always similar.
The body painting at night I have seen only in the Star Chant. It was on the fourth night and ended the ceremony of Hotchonji as they sang all night**, which always happens at the end of any ceremony, even a short one. The fact of a night’s wakefulness is most important for the patient’s healing.]

Please sing** like this for me—and if you find yourself awake at night, you'll know your wakefulness has a purpose… thank you each and everyone for all your deep caring, watchfulness and kind loving wishes!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

My Bosom Buddies

This morning has glory all over it!

japanese silk print
morning glory pattern

jaguar woman print

Jo Self, Morning Glories, painted from the Dalai Lama's Garden

Well, I'm finally seeing the crack of dawn through the velvet night of cancer, ready to plan for the future, begin the return to living in the world at large, all is being completely reinvented, and it is glorious! **
[chem-3 fallout was co-mingled with the highest teachings of meditation in the Mahamudra retreat last week-end, nothing will ever be the same]

I'm feeling much much stronger than ever in months and months today] and-so I stand up, back to the future— I have had a dream to have a breakfast cafe all my life, and a few weeks ago when I was lifting back into life from chemo # 2, I had a true vision one morning of the whole enterprise in vivid detail display itself in my "mind's eye" as the saying goes, and so in an almost mystical chemo-floatingness, I drifted down stairs, found Frederic outside in the crystal light of morning, sawing wood for his beautiful home improvement project and said simply: "I want to start a breakfast restaurant." He said with out a single heart-beat of hesitation "OK, honey". Since then, every indication, image, and most importantly every important person in my large circle of important people to my life's structure have given me complete unconditional enthusiastic support. I have 4 weeks to complete my business plan. I have a Letter of Intent from a landlord for the lease space 2 blocks from our house in a very thriving neighborhood (a neighborhood without breakfast or coffee spot)— and the blessing and generosity and backing of two very dear old friends who want to partner as investors!  So many blessings continue to reign and rain down on me. I am so humbled.  The morning glory flower is a tenacious plant, enduring- even thriving in nearly any condition. Wild or cultivated, blossoms open for a single day with brilliant displays of azure sky and white-hot specks of sunlight in their middle. Impermanence perfected!
This entry is dedicated to all you who have endured the cutting, the chemicals, and burns, and are still dreaming, still thrivingly alive, still planning for the future all the while KNOWING more deeply than any other truth, that 'TODAY' is all that is ever given or ever needed, to BE today is ALL, nothing left out! •• 
I dedicate my efforts to realize this dream of mine to create this eatery in which to enjoy the freshness of the dawning day, beholding the morning each new day in it's glory offers us—to all of YOUR dreams, YOU are each my very special blossoming bosom buddies!  Bless you each and all.

Following is a tea recipe shared with me from my friend Anne T. it will be on the menu at MoRNING GLoRY!
Thank you Anne!
The Power of Four
Renee was not greedy with her Essiac Tea recipe. The following four main herbs make up the natural remedy tea for curing cancer:
1. Burdock Root. Traditionally used to:
* Help reduce mucus
* Maintain a healthy gastrointestinal tract
* Stimulate a healthy immune response
* Improve weak digestion
* Sweat out toxins through the skin
* As a diuretic for waster retention
2. Slippery Elm. 

Contains large amounts of tannins and mucilages that are believed to help dissolve mucus deposits in tissue, glands and nerve channels.
3. Sheep Sorrel. Used to:
* Cool the body
* Create sweating and detoxification through the skin
* Nourishes the glandular system
* As a diuretic to maintain healthy kidney and urinary functions
4. Indian Rhubarb Root. 
* Acts as a gently laxative and helps purge the liver of toxic buildup and waste. 
* Helps to neutralize acids due to indigestion. 
* Its malic acid also carries oxygen to all parts of the body.
* Aids in healing and promoting a positive, balancing effect upon the whole digestive system.
Making the tea yourself is quite easy. 
Renee recommended 1 oz. of tea with 2 oz. of water on a daily basis. Furthermore, you don't have to have cancer to benefit from Essiac tea. It is a great preventative measure and a superb detoxifier. 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


K just called and asked me "how are you CHEMO-SABE?"! This is interesting since  when looked up what kimosabe means and according to Lone Ranger mythology- Tonto refers to the Lone Ranger as Kimosabe, meaning "trusted -scout".

Trusted Scout—

On the trail and it is a craggy steep out under clear sky, pocked with white clouds and shimmering sun. Bird calls closing up for night, fainting shadows along the ever greening elm saplings and lilac scent enough to sicken the weak.

I realize talking with F this afternoon, I have "chemo", not "cancer". 
Patience Patience—trusted scout on the range where I'm on the look out for small prideful moments that shut down the body/mind communication, let me drink it ALL in… I won't after all, have "CHEMO" for much longer!

Monday's realization, in the midst of deepest moments of fatigue which I call weakness, a very very subtle aversion to the body and then immediate sense this thought/feeling is like a miniature self-betrayal.

I instantly regret the arising of not wanting to be in the body- escape mentality- when sitting with the body, holding forth, gently cradling my own body with my body the mind eases and breath flows and there is a landscape of forgiveness and endurance- a welling up- maybe something like a runners second-wind? Place the breath in front of the body resting with the rise and fall, nothing more nothing less. No where to go- no where to come from, rising and falling just the breath in this body and feeling the poison working its mystery. Not even days and nights have boundaries when all is breathing. sleep from 4-11 wake from 11-4 sleep from 4-7 wake from 7-7,
sleep from …wake from …from ?…

eating red cabbage and cucumber I feel true joy.