she breaks apart in washes
under the weight of now
whispering to the songs of taize
leaning-velvet firmly in life’s vows.
Part of the season of today is being co-pilot in caretaking my parents. I find it fascinating what surfaces in this process. Emotions long thought gone, memories believed gone in the winds of time.
It is both exhausting and a gift simultaneously.
and life does not stop. I certainly cannot put the illness I live with on hold and ask it to come back another day. lol That never happens anyway; wouldn’t that be nice. Ask to be more convenient please?
Not gonna happen. and here I am today, in a flare of my illness. It is not a bad one. Not like in the past before I was on a preventative medicine where I would be hospitalized and things were very scary.
I went to outpatient infusion to receive 5 days of IV Steroids. and am now on an oral taper to step down your body from the steroids.
And how does this all relate? How does it relate to the topic of forgiveness?
With my family, I am meeting some feelings, some not ever felt, and with my copilot, I am learning I was never alone. I am sorry we both went through what we went through. The openness with which I can speak with frankness is comforting.
And within certain experiences now, I feel compassion, I feel thankful for this season I have with my parents. It is bringing me to another level of forgiveness, a rich and reality based forgiveness. I do not really have the words I am searching for but maybe you can get the idea.
The other end is related to self forgiveness and compassion. I often feel guilty for my illness. Not because anyone is trying to impose that, quite the opposite. I have such a supportive community and family and friends.
No, I do it to myself. and when my illness decides to flare, I feel guilty, and I worry about others worrying, and I begin to mentally go down some rabbit hole of “make sure this” or “make sure that” so nobody worries or is scared or now has extra hardship. Better get better and fast. You know, the absolute crap in the head kind of trash talk about oneself.
So, I step back. my meditation has been reflective in this idea of self forgiveness. My illness is a reality and it is ever present. I do not need to feel guilty. I do not need to trash talk myself inside.
I can ask and accept the extra help I need. It is hard sometimes. Part of that is just the loss of independence in the traditional since, but with that extra help, I am able to do things, to get out of bed, to get ready, to go to the park, to run errands, to go to the studio all kinds of things.
Yes, it is loss, and that is a reality, and it is not endless, and the richness of accepting help. The intimacy I get to know and grow in deep friendship, I would not have such this experience but for needing this extra help.
I meditate with what independence really means, and does it matter. Is it really just part of the illusion of wanting to do things perfectly so I can prove worth to be here and take up space.
Yesterday was quite the day. It was my birthday, and I don’t usually celebrate my birthdays much; its a long story for another time maybe.
I had a morning to lunchtime people who came over. I am working on recovering from this flare of the NMO. but very special people came. brought decorations and hung them and we wore silly glasses and party time headbands. They brought me a coffee, and flowers and presents! For those who know me it is difficult for me to do this. and to accept things like this.
It was so much fun! by the lunchtime ish I was spent. and people left and I slept and rested the rest of the day, also getting to spend some time on the phone with people I love.
It was a special day. I had so much fun laughing with these friends, my family. Bright, colorful, and smiley. the deep smile, soul-hugging kind of smile.
And I hang on to that, because I am taught to let go. to enjoy the moment as it is. And isn’t that at least part of self forgiveness, forgiveness? to be present in the moment as it is, without judgment; just being; resting in such being?
I will keep meditating. There is no one answer. And the mind, body, and soul, can answer for themselves.
paint, much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower