The other side of fish…
Fish, strangely enough seemed to have been swimming through my day today. First in the morning with Patience, we stumbled across the metaphor of fish riding bicycles, that was inadvertent as what we were thinking about was actually fish climbing trees; we noted this in time to prevent me tweeting surreallistically,
“How am I supposed to run this damn circus when I can’t even get a fish to ride this bicycle!?”
The intention was commentary on trying to get society to behave one way when that is simply not the reality of our condition. Fortunately I noticed the misattribution before sending the tweet which would’ve seemed more a commentary on my “not in a relationship” status.
This watery metaphorical icon came swimming back through just 45 minutes ago as I was lying on my bed receiving an osteopathic adjustment from Dr. Mike. After spending two weeks in bed a week ago Tuesday I was able to rise again and return to a daily schedule when Mike made a similar adjustment.
I commented to him that “his treatment” seems to have made all the difference. Tripping backwards over himself in humility, he retorted, “it wasn’t MY TREATMENT!” If I could cure that easily, “I’d have a band of goatee wearing ascetics following me around all day.”
“It’s like when I tell my sushi chef, this is really good! He always tells me, don’t tell me, tell the fish, I just cut it up.”
I woke early this morning after retiring early last evening. I was lazy, coming out of a long strange movielike dream. Following a heroin that she made her way through an Armed Forces experience, something like the Vietnam War, met a fellow male soldier, had an affair, flew back to the states to her husband and child, the story transitioned to following the man returning as a veteran, eventually being chased by the cops and wider authorities before finally near the end of the dream he took flight in an almost impossible situation that somehow, miraculously ended aloft and soaring freedom over majestic landscapes…
I meditated for the better part of an hour and spent a few minutes going over email and more news before Patience poked her smiling facing in the doorway, our first reunion after her 10 day trip to the wilderness of Wyoming.
She had that look of pleasant disorientation that one might feel as one swims through context ebbing and flowing from the familiar to the exotic and back again, though now the familiar is somehow different than when we left…
We had a quick morning to move through with a date to be rolling out of the garage and ready for the day’s first appointment at the pain clinic in just a couple of hours. Some subtle divine magic at play to keep my sweet friend on her toes and still tumbling through the transition a little longer. Very fishy. 😉
Checking in to the hospital outpatient Pavilion, “Pain is just this way.” Said the pleasant lady in the Harry Potter shirt, jeans, and plain blue mask, gesturing to our right after quizzing us on our Covid related checklist for symptoms.
I couldn’t help notice it was quite uncanny, why would I want to follow those directions!? Who goes looking for pain? I should think they would invite something more along the lines of “pain relief is just this way…”
But no matter, we made our way in, stood dutifully in line two meters back from the check in window until we were called forward, took our forms and clipboard and sat down to the first line:
I knew there was some smart-alecky response I wanted to give, but barely had time to joke about the urge before nurse Kelsey opened the door and invited us back to exam room 4 to get us settled for our conversation with Dr. Wallace.
We chatted with the doctor for a moment when he suddenly turned, ducking out the door, “let me get a spine” he said. My mind was still processing the assertion, looking for congruence, when he popped back in the door with a skeleton on wheels. Oh yes, a spine, I thought. I smiled.
I had no idea the sacrum was just one bone. I had always just imagined a series of increasingly small vertebrae making up the sacral spine. It’s kind of like the head of a fish…
As it turns out, steroid shots are fairly simple and the low impact intervention on our list of possible avenues to pursue. Dr. Wallace was easy-going, very sharp, relaxed and helpful, cheerfully if a bit dutifully answering each of our questions, not taking less, nor more time than we needed and in short order we were well informed and alone in the room with a box of Kleenex to find our way out the door.
Arriving home, the heat of the day was well upon us. I had thought, perhaps an easy lunch outside before things get too warm. Sitting for a few moments under the sun umbrella, gazing at the garden and hillside beyond, I realized I was wrong. We were in fact sitting in what may as well have been an oven and retreating indoors to air conditioning was absolutely in order.
It’s after 6 PM now and the thermometer still reading near 90° expecting not to break below 70° this evening.
I made my way through my inbox and a scattering of other clerical business before 2 PM when our new friend and Care collaborator, Stephanie arrived for her first day of integration.
She and Patience and I sat under the cool air vent in the sunroom. Patience and I are touching base on the focus of holding a “Practitioners House” in recognition and preparation for her moving and down the hall over the next few days.
As preamble and context I was explaining to Stephanie the idea of the practitioner’s house as coming from Patience and my shared history of familiarity with Patanjali’s eight limbs of yoga. I pointed out that this house is an expression of that kind of intentional and even ritual focus on aspirational integrity that lives at the core of our MettaCare initiative.
When I was finished, I was surprised to find tears running down her face.
I have been moved myself recently to humble emotion, hardly daring to consider just how well things feel around me right now in terms of who is showing up and the sincerity that seems to be pouring through those people to be a part of this vision, this longing and love for care…
“This is exactly what I’ve been looking for.” Said the young woman, wiping away the tears, almost bashfully, but smiling.
No words come to describe the gratitude and humility I feel in this moment, nor in that. What precious grace is this? I can only pray that I might find the strength of character to rise to this convergence of longing for love and service in the world.
The words “a day out of time” comes to mind, immediately followed by questions of the relevance of even admitting such a narrow construct as time itself. Beautiful, kind, broken, sincere, and powerful people look back at me at every turn these days.
Profound teachers, business leaders, systems transformers, irresistible entrepreneurs, wide-eyed and passionate youth, and humble mystics are my friends and collaborators.
“How on earth did you get to see Dr. Wallace!?” Said Dr. Mike to me today on his house call to attend my well-being. “He is the director of the whole thing!” He said. My heart is to broken open to have responded, it’s just who they gave me when I called. I thought.
Cassandra and Stephanie are bubbling around the house just now, preparing to make dinner, currently treating the rosebush out front with a little soap and water in hopes of reviving it from its devastating assault at the hands of what appear to be spider mites.
Cool air drifts down from the register high on the wall to my right. The playlist echoing in the background, my “top rated” to be fair has played quite the soundtrack to this evening’s exercise of writing. Peter Gabriel, “I Grieve” echoes now, a certain melancholy tone reflective of a feeling of broken open emptiness, a willingness to receive that washes over me reflecting on such good fortune as has blessed me today and so many other days.
God gets to know things, we just get to ask questions…