Searching for the end of love…
I’m starting this journal entry a little earlier in the day than usual. The sun is still lingering in the trees above the hillside to the West. The live video stream to the Boston Center for Contemplative Practice Wednesday evening meditation class is open on the monitor to my left.
As often as I am able I like to attend this sitting with Dr. Daniel P Brown for his lectures and guided meditation on Buddhist Mahamudra practice. The instruction, as well as the community appear to be of the highest caliber, and my own meditation practice has been profoundly influenced for the better over the last few years during which I’ve been attending.
If you’re in the neighborhood, either online or in person, I definitely recommend the center, and the practice.
The small space heater is blowing next to me, clearing the air in combination with the whole house ventilation after the visit of our most recent applicant for the currently open caregiving position. A lovely lady, on a bit too much coffee and jitters, but the volume of perfume was quite overwhelming. What was initially a nasal assault, grew even after her parting to a full-blown respiratory burn.
Looks like the class is picking up again, I’ll return to this page after the practice.
[45 minutes elapsed…]
Dusk has fallen. Dr. Brown mentioned a beautiful song about the journey to enlightenment, beyond love, and back… I only mention it because it’s worth mentioning. It has the quality of dusk, beyond the light of wondering, the darkness of clarity…
I made it out of the house today into the sunlight. Speaking of the light of wondering. It’s been since Saturday that I was outside. Even then it was only between the front doors of the hospital and the car, and once more arriving home. I left the car in the driveway with Greg and was, three minutes later, at my desk. I have remained at my desk since then with only brief breaks for food and sleeping and an occasional interview with potential caregivers to help us get through the month, and with a little luck, beyond.
My care friend came in this morning, her last day, heart visibly lightened and rising was easy and swift. That is of course if we allow within “easy and swift” for an extended period and physically taxing bowel evacuation. I didn’t mind though. The last few days, the bowel was slow almost to a halt. That brought compounding stress and anxiety as I’m barely keeping up as it is and with that symptom, the hospital was looming again. This morning’s event alleviated that concern almost completely as the evacuation was a greater volume than even an ordinary large. So in that sense, easy and swift.
Out of bananas, my friend ran to the store just up the block in order to bring our morning smoothie online. I came straight to work researching the process of selling my car and investigating possible services to support the establishment of a special needs trust into which I might be able to place some asset and allow myself a little runway in the case of outcomes leading me to a nursing home (currently about 60% likely).
Finishing breakfast and establishing some baseline on those clerical matters, I turned my attention to the urgency of the current consulting contract. I think I mentioned yesterday I’m days behind a fast approaching Saturday deadline. Just before returning to these words in fact, a friend stepped in who may be able to help me with that, quite a relief providing the platforms message “fatal error” wasn’t serious when I reassigned the protocols to her account and found them absent from mine. 😉
After 2 1/2 hours of intensive engagement with the words of one client, teasing out their insights, grace, and opportunities, Cassandra arrived to make lunch and to make nice around the place. I could feel it throughout my body that I must take this advantage to get some fresh air and light and bolted past her out the door and into the garden.
It’s really been 10 days since I’ve appreciated the yard, and in particular the rich indigenous landscape just now growing into its own after our dear friend from Gardens for the Future spent the early autumn transforming a barren wasteland into a field of young sprouts. As I took in my first breaths of sunlight, color, and air, I decided to call Eliana and just offer some appreciation for the great work she had done, now producing flowers and inviting birds, bees, and butterflies to call this home.
Time right now is so precious, each moment a critical increment to move some small piece of this mad life forward, or capture some leak of energy. It’s enough, so many would say, simply to value the presence of oneself in the sunlight, fresh air, and nature, yet right now the crisis feels even more pressing than that.
I was grateful to be able to “use” my time in the garden to fan the flames of friendship, share laughter and conversation. As it turns out, I may even have found a job for a friend of a friend on that call; and a partner in effort for one in need.
After Eliana and I hung up, another old friend rang in, happy to help with selling the car, happy to suggest a possible worker for Eliana, and happier still to scheme a visit on Friday simply to spend time together and catch up. The moments of time these days seem so terse, and everywhere I look – death, transformation, intensity… I think the neighbor passed away recently, can’t be sure, but there’s a lot of uncommon movement on the property. My friend, similarly just returning from the death of her father, and closing the business she’s been running for the last nearly 20 years.
How could it be so hard to find time in the timeless?
After a lovely hour in the air, waterfall gurgling, flowers blooming, light breeze and hot sun, it was time to return to the desk; or was it 75 minutes?
Back to spend the afternoon in the contract work, until the 4 PM hour would bring the next caregiver interview (mentioned above), after that a short call from dad just checking in to see the state of affairs, and directly adjacent, dropping into my Wednesday online meditation class, also mentioned above. The class is a precious affair, and I’ve had to forgo it too many times in the last weeks, thinking, as above, that something should be more pressing than taking time for that simple openhearted appreciation of being.
Life sure is a fickle pickle every now and again.
Just as the class ended, Cassandra arrived, we’ll have a quiet evening tonight just the two of us, Caitlin and Kitty having moved to new pastures, leaving a quiet house once again.
I’ll close on the words of Leonard Cohen ringing in the background… “Dance me to the end of love…”
God gets to know things, we just get to ask questions…