OK, I usually don’t post so much in a weekend, but I have to say this has been one helluva weekend and it’s only Saturday.
It began yesterday with my dear friend who is a “home maker” extraordinaire. Obviously I don’t get everything done around here that needs doing with the freakish life I have, so she comes to help me keep my life manageable in many ways. Over the winter working with her here at the farm has been enlightening as well as Lightening. What’s the difference? Well, the first one means that she teaches me a higher sense of myself.The second means she helps lighten my load.
“Everyone does their best”, she reminds me often as I bitch about our fellow musician friends. Her partner was my drummer for a long time so our paths have crossed all over the place.
She is the one who brought me to yoga, and to african drumming. She is like an angel and always shows me the right path to take, so when she says go that way i just nod, smile and walk.
Yesterday she came to clean the house and had a brilliant idea.
“Why don’t we tackle your storage room?”, she says with a big energetic grin.
I must have had a lack of coffee in me or a hangover or something because I found my mouth saying;
Let me explain. My husband and I have moved our seven kids 5 times in the past 12 years. We are tired of moving. y the time we finally got here, three years ago (did I say THREE years??) I was beyond exhausted and facing one helluva mess. This place had been trashed. I don’t mean just picking up garbage I mean rats and black mold. I spent 16 days straight when we finally got to take over the place learning how to take down walls and install floors just so th kids wouldn’t be in danger.
And the rats? They appeared soon after our first few nights on the farm and it got quiet enough to actually hear the little (enormous) buggers. One night I caved and decided to take a bath in the disgusting previously moldy blechy bathtub. It was made of metal, had rust stains in more places than porcelain, but I was a desperate woman. I NEEDED a bath.
As I lay scrunched up missing our jacuzzi in our nice big suburban house with our neat little garden and tidy little yards, I felt a bump under my left ass cheek. I can;t leave out the detail such as it is etched in my memory. I leapt up from the tub as if someone were about the throw a toaster in. I could hear them…must have been dozens, all scrambling to share the warmth of my tub.
I’ll leave the rest up to your fruitful minds but it as you can imagine – it wasn’t pretty.
Just small examples of what we have been contending with since our arrival.
Well, the time had come and I could see that my friend was again pointing me in the right direction. This time though, it wasn’t like yoga or happy african drumming. No, those things I looked forward to. This was going to be an excavation of the most badly kept storage room in the history of the world. I had drunken teenagers puking in there, boxes thrown over books moldy and stuck to the floor, rat shit, cat shit dog shit mouse shit goat shit – ok you get the picture.
The boxes were piled dauntingly and dangerously high to the ceiling.
My friend Regine was amazing – a machine. I opened the door at 10:45 in the morning and she did not stop moving until 5:00.
We made a pile for the second-hand store, a pile of books which we had no clue what to do with, a pile of things I would keep a pile to give to my eldest step daughter as honourary keeper of her family’s stuff, we found journals and socks…oh so many sock. We found a cool sweatshirt and a bunch of art supplies, old paintings and things my kids had done, which made me cry cause I miss them little. We found old camping gear, Halloween outfits and all of the papers john’s ex-wife put together in case she died. I found my grade 1 report card. I’m pretty sure I was mildly retarded…I saw my drawing, people do not look like that. I found pictures of my family dating back to the 1940’s. records with no turntable, children; clothes with no children, books that have been read and are finished.
And the piece-de-resistance: my first wedding dress. It was one of the last things we found, all crumpled and moldy having been eaten out of its protective bag by ambitious mice who had started gnawing on the lace and beads they had mistaken for something edible. This made my heart stop a little, as I could see right away it wasn’t salvageable. I added it slowly to the burning pile. Memories of that hopeful day revisited me like punches in the face. Up until that point I had been doing ok rifling through my old life, johns old life, his ex-wife’s entire life, my parents old life, my brothers and sisters…what the hell was I thinking keeping all that garbage? It’s like I kept everyone’ memories. I realized that until I stop secretly punishing myself and others for the unchangeable past, there is no way in this world I can be completely free. So, I chose to be free and gave the dress to the fire allot more easily than I would have ever imagined. I hope it releasing forgiveness smoke 🙂 By putting all these things into the enormous life threatening fire john had built felt good…cleansing.
It was like Regine says, “It’s bad energy to keep broken things. Let go of what doesn’t serve you any more and make room for the new”.
I know she’s right and I know that she knew exactly what we were doing. This wasn’t about having a nice clean second barn to turn into an art studio or something fun. No, this was the end of something, I can feel it. I don’t feel an attachment to these things anymore and burning them seems like a positive releasing of the energy.
Today I woke up and tried to ignore my sore body. I think the body reacts to emotion and for me I feel it in my back when life feels heavy. Instead maybe I will pay attention, and honour this Easter as another kind of renewal inside of me.