A Lovely Night of Normal

Image from www.nomi.nl

Image from www.nomi.nl

“Become major, Paul. Live like a hero. That’s what the classics teach us. Be a main character. Otherwise what is life for?”
~ J.M. Coetzee

 

One of the problems of having a chronic illness like Lyme Disease is that so often you end up marginalised in your own life. If you choose to expend some of your precious energy in one area of your day, there’ll be none left for other choices. In fact, there may be no more energy for days.

Because of that, life usually dwindles to a handful of survival skills, and a few crumbs of a greater existence that you do your best to grasp and experience as deeply as you can. If you can. When you can.

As Lyme has stolen my moments, my energy, my social life, my cognitive function, my family, my bodily functions, my years, the one blessing is that I’ve mostly been too ill to care.

But I’m actively healing now. Life is changing. I am changing.

I am reclaiming this wider sense of me.

So, in that spirit, I celebrated Christmas with a staff party this year.

Party? Dinner, really. Nothing too wild. And staff? So far I have just one. Although my dreams are big. 🙂

I just felt the need to say thank you. To my one staff member, to my darling husband Ben, who is my greatest support, and to the Universe, which has conspired with me to change my fortunes and expand my horizons.

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This little party was so important to me – so symbolic and imbued with meaning – that I deliberately stopped my Lyme meds long enough that I would be able to enjoy an alcoholic drink or two, like a real proper grown-up healthy person!

Dana, my wonderful PA, came over to my house in the afternoon and we talked hair, clothes and all the sorts of girly things I haven’t done for years. It reminded me of when I was back in College, getting ready for a big night out. Oh, it was thrilling.

Late in the afternoon I washed my hair. I thought about what I would wear. I painted my toenails!

Darkness fell, and out Ben and I went. We met Dana and her husband at a beautiful Japanese restaurant, and sat at a table with a view out over the sparkly night.

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We ate delicious food, I enjoyed TWO excellent Asahi beers (I had planned cocktails, or champagne, but in the end, after such a hot day, those beers were mighty fine!), and then, some of the last diners to leave, we ventured out into the tropical evening and caught a taxi home.

Today it’s back to green smoothies, detox food, and my usual routine of pills, potions and therapies.

I’m hope-filled right now. To be reclaiming these small spaces in my life feels like a miracle.

Today I’ll be planning my year ahead; with my journal, my coloured pens, and the reading I gave myself on the Soul Sanctuary Retreat.

I wonder how many people shall be gathered at my Staff Christmas Party table in 2015, and where we might be?

How exciting it will be to see this next year unfold!

How about you? What are you planning, dreaming and scheming for 2015? I’d love to know!

Much love to you, Nicole xx

Image from flickr.com

Image from flickr.com

Eating the Sun Meditation

Malcolm Jagamara - "Inapaku dreaming"

Malcolm Jagamara – “Inapaku dreaming”

“The deeper we look into nature, the more we recognize that it is full of life, and the more profoundly we know that all life is a secret and that we are united with all life that is in nature.” ~ Albert Schweitzer

“The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious–the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science.” ~ Albert Einstein

The next installment of my Kimberley Story

One of the most nurturing and empowering meditations I know is the practice I call ‘Eating the Sun’. I use it for energetic cleansing. I use it for physical healing. I use it for emotional and spiritual healing. I use it to recharge my batteries. I use it when I’m burdened and my soul aches.

It was taught to me during my time in the Kimberley by Little Auntie, with some help from Grandmother. Although it is a powerful practice it was many years before I came to appreciate just how powerful it is.

One time Little Auntie and Grandmother came to visit, waiting in the shade while their old truck was repaired by the Aboriginal stockman and our station mechanic. Their truck was always in need of repair, and the stockman was part of their extended family so they often stopped by.

I was inside on the phone, talking with a family member who was going through a very hard time back on the other side of the country. It was painful, being separated by so much distance, not being close enough to give them a hug or to play a bigger part in their lives. It made me miserably homesick.

When I came and said hello to the two old aboriginal ladies, Little Auntie took my hand in her thin bony ones and closed her eyes for a minute. As she did she made a strange humming sound. When she finally let my hand go she beckoned me to follow her.

Grandmother came with us, translating Little Auntie’s muttered greeting. “Big time sad you are. Dis no good. Heavy, heavy. Dis sadness you take him from dem other fellas. Take it in your own skin. Make dem feel better. But it sit in your body, make you sick. Little Auntie show you proper good medicine fix you up.”

Grandmother held my sweaty hand in her cool, dry one and we walked behind the diminutive figure of Little Auntie as she led us out into the paddock until we were standing under the blazing sun.

The tiny Elder motioned for me to take my boots off. And then she guided me with her hands until I was faced directly into the sun. Her leathery hand reached up, gentle as a feather, and closed my eyes, tilting my head until the heat and light penetrated my closed lids.

Image from Miraja

Image from Miraja

We stood silent for a minute. I became aware of the sun, there beyond my closed eyes. I could see it as a ball of light. The colours blazed behind my lids as a swirling mandala of reds, purples and orange. It was beautiful.

Little Auntie began to speak in her whispery-thin voice, with Grandmother translating.

“Let that sun fill you up. Feel it on your face. Feel her power come in you.”

I stood there and surrendered to the Light. As I did my body sagged with relaxation.

“Under your feet is country. Country your mother too. Get strong wid your feet. Get dat strong connection to country. Feel it like dem big roots of a tree going down down, long way into the ground.”

Image from Heiko Gartner

Image from Heiko Gartner

I did that, and slowly I began to become calm and centred.

“Now open your mouth. Eat up dat sunshine. Swallow it down into your belly. Let it burn up all dat sadness. Let dat energy fill you up till no more can get in.”

It sounded silly. Eating the sun.

I stood there with my eyes closed but I couldn’t understand how to eat energy.

Someone lightly smacked my arm. Little Aunty chastised me in a way that needed no translation. Self consciously I opened my mouth and found that I literally could eat the sun. I could feel that golden light as I swallowed it down.

She made a small self-satisfied noise as I kept eating up that sunshine.

“Now breathe out all dat sadness, all dat dark and sick place inside you. Breathe it all out and fill up with plenty more sun. Don’t you worry. Country, she take dat bad energy from you and soak it all up. Heal you and make you strong from two mothers, Mother Earth and dat good Sun.”

I breathed out, visualising wispy grey smoke leaving my body to be absorbed into the earth. The heaviness left my heart and I felt stronger and more peaceful.

Image by Justin Maes

Image by Justin Maes

“Remember say thank you!”

I offered up a heartfelt prayer of thanks.

Later, we came back to the station and drank sweet tea and ate some of Cookie’s homemade cake.

Grandmother smiled and patted my arm kindly. “We aboriginal women, we can heal dis in you. You dat ting. You can heal dis in others. Use your hands. Use your heart. Take dat pain or bad feeling or sickness and put it in your own body. But you gotta know how to clear yourself. How to heal yourself and get dat good energy back. So eat dat sun. Now you know how, eat dat sun, okay? It’s plenty good medicine.”

And she was right.

It’s a simple meditation. Here’s a summary for you:

  1. Face in the direction of the sun. Even on a cloudy day this still works. With closed eyes you can tune in very strongly. You don’t even need to be outside. You could face a window in direct light. But if you can, stand on the earth with the open sky above you.
  2. Root your feet deep into the earth. Truly feel that strong and supportive connection with country. Be barefoot if you can, but be practical too.
  3. Drink in the sunlight, drawing it deep down into your belly. Fill your whole body with light. Send the light to the places in your body that need extra healing or energy.
  4. Breathe out illness, sadness, negativity and despair. Surrender that wordless heavy energy. Give it all up via your breath, knowing that the earth will absorb and transmute this.
  5. Fill yourself up with more light, as well as sending it to specific places on the planet, or to others, if this feels right.
  6. In your own way, give thanks for this gift of energy and healing.

You can do this meditation daily, many times a day or just when you need it. And perhaps from time to time, as you eat the sun, think of Little Auntie and how an old Aboriginal woman you’ve never met, from one of the most remote parts of Australia, has gifted you something good and true.

Wishing you joy and peace in your life today.

Much love to you, Nicole xx

Dancers from the Yarrabah community perform during the Laura Aboriginal Dance Festival in Laura, Australia Picture: GETTY

Dancers from the Yarrabah community perform during the Laura Aboriginal Dance Festival in Laura, Australia    Picture: GETTY