Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Finding My Balance and Joy

Okay so I have some big tumors in my liver. Funny thing is I don't feel worried about that. I certainly did and probably will again and have had some big cries on various shoulders...Sharon, dad, mom, Ashley, Melany (okay not on her shoulder but under her healing touch) and on the phone with various people.... Even as the fear creeps in and my life seems turned upside down again I am in touch with how amazing it is to be able to cry... to feel the fear, the confusion, the despair...... I can feel it and that is so much better than when I couldn't feel it. The point is though that already I am paddling down this new tributary of the river smoother than I thought I would. Smoother than I would have BC (before cancer).

The thing that is getting me the most down right now is leaving Northampton. I loved living close to Sharon and Rachel. It was great to see Melany more and I had lots of ideas that included health and helping out with Ada and Willow, living something closer to our teenage dreams of how we would live together on a piece of land and heal animals together. I was loving the seeming magic that was happening for me. Reconnecting with people (Ashley, Bob, Daniel), meeting people who I had wanted to meet (Ruthie), meeting people who I didn't know I wanted to meet but did (Paige, Shira, Madelynne, Angie, Seth, someone at Sirius). Connecting with group meditation, kirtan. There was a flow, a zone, I was in it. I could feel it. Fun. Exciting. Magical.
There was a underlying thing that wasn't working though.... that was my body. I could feel it. I hoped that it would gone when the stent came out...a little bit of the sensation went away but other arts of it increased. I hoped that it was just that I needed to heal from the procedure.... but then even when I took it really really easy it became clear that it was something else. Some of the sensation was familiar. When I can weed out the different sensations that were all lumped together at the beginning of all of this I can tell now that some of the sensations are the same. In fact I could tell all along. My healers were telling me no to worry and that I shouldn't always think the worst and that things would be okay.... my body was telling me differently.

Which brings me to the part of things that has been clear to me ll along but that I need to learn how to navigate. How do I have healers that I respect and believe can help my body return to its healthy state but still be able to listen to my body and what my body says. How do I determine if I am just thinking too much. If my mind is falling into its old patterns of negative thinking or if my body and heart are telling me a clear message that I need to listen to. I feel confident that I am learning and that not much harm was done by waiting past wen my body was giving a clear message. In fact if I had listened I would have missed out on a great month of learning who I am now as an adult outside of intentional community... of learning that maybe I am not so shy, that it is not hard for me to meet people, that connecting with people feeds my soul and that I feel deeply passionate about it even outside of community. So they probably would have found the tumors when they were smaller (is it really possible that I can feel this okay and have so much of my liver taken over by tumors..... the liver is one crazy organ). I am not sure I was ready to submit and move to Boston at that point. So maybe being slowed down by my healers even though they were not exactly right that everything was okay was key to my journey. Slowing down...getting a sense of spaciousness around time. I do believe that it will be okay again, by okay I mean that my liver will resume its healthy state and that the other organs will maintain their healthy state. In that way I think my healers are right.

So I was thinking that I was out of the zone.... the zone in which my life is full of abundance and things are going my way.... but now I don't really think I am out of it. For example..... I expressed some concern about how to make living in Boston work..... I immediately find out that there is still a room at Kevins, that Rebecca and Tom are willing to super squish in their apartment to make room for me, and that Lea is still offering a room at her place. Lea is someone who I barely know but feel a really nice connection with. A year or two ago mom sent me a message from Lea that was sent to the B'nai Or email list about an earthbag building she was going to be working on. I almost always disregard forwarded emails from my mom because usually I feel some kind of internal pressure to be interested when I am not and then I end up feeling annoyed. This time I read it and was excited that finally there was an email that I understood why she was sending it and found it useful. I keep in the back of my mind a plan for what I would do if I decided to live closer to family. One of the parts of the plan included community building through natural building. So I contacted Lea and made plans to meet and talk about the building the nest time I was going to be in MA. Turns out that building was only a small part of our lives that had overlap and common interest. I enjoyed our conversation a included beekeeping, spirituality, death, and various other topics. I felt that I had a lot to learn from Lea. She is one of the women at the service that I went to who fills the role of elder in my eyes. A role in which I am more and more recognizing that value in this role in my life and also in a healthy society. Since I got sick Lea has been making herself very available if I needed anything. When I put out that my liver is not doing so well Lea once again offered a space in her house. It feels like such a huge offer and I am having to remind myself that part of the learning that I am doing through this is to ask for and accept help. I am again having to work through feelings of wonder as to why I deserve such an offer, guilt about privilege, fear about inequality and debt, etc. I feel excited by the possibility that it will work out to live with Lea for a while. Maybe we will garden together, maybe I will learn about bees, maybe we will play music together, maybe we will silently flow around each other, maybe we will have great conversation, hopefully she will benefit from my presence. I am going to check out her space today to make sure that it feels right for both of us but if it does then.... Dorchester here I come. I have long thought that I should live in a city someday even though I don't really want to.... I guess now is the time....

Some things I feel excited for by the possibility..... healing, studying with Tom and others. Connecting with Rebecca, Suzanne, Kevin and who knows who else but I feel certain that they will show up. Maybe Rebecca and I will sing and play music together, maybe we will make art, maybe we will take a pottery class. Maybe I will finally get to see Eleanors place in Gloucester and hang out outside of our healer healee connection. Maybe I will actually be in the area when Etta, Ethan, and Sara are in Gloucester and can get a tour of the bay where Ethan and his friends used to go iceberging (crazy shit). Maybe I will to see Ethan's spitfire mom again.

Today I had an amazing healing session with a new to me healer, Adel. Monica had to cancel because her mom is in the hospital. I felt that I needed to get tuina so I called Adel who does it out of the Quincy office where I was planning to be for tong ren classes. I thought Monica was hard core in her treatments but now I know that the pain during her treatments is nothing. Adel pretty much tried to reach through my flesh in order to undo the blockages. After just a few minutes of him working on my neck I felt my liver lighten up. Ease. I think I could even feel the tumors shrinking.... not that I really know what that would feel like. I had eaten before seeing him and was concerned that I wouldn't be comfortable lying on my stomach... after he treated my neck I was totally comfortable lying on my stomach. I had to ask him many many times to give me a break from the spot he was working on and now I feel super sore but it felt so deeply right the way it felt so deeply right when I first went to see Tom and he and Monica worked on me and I was screaming in pain. After the treatment I felt energized, happy, relaxed.... in fact the up until this paragraph, this post was written right after the treatment. There were some spots in my sacrum and tail bone that I always wish that someone would access that Adel accessed. Makes me think that maybe someday I will not have that old pain in my tailbone when I sit too long, and my lower back wont hurt after I do pretty much anything physical.

I just got back from meeting with Lea. I feel so so lucky to have a place to stay. It is a beautiful old house in a beautiful neighborhood in Dorchester. Lea seems super laid back and used to having people around. I will have two dog friends. I am moving in on Monday. Wow, I am going to live in a city. I could already feel my wild animal self preparing to hunker down for a bit and just look around from one place and also felt like I have to hurry up and figure out how to be a city biker and such..... no rush Tamar..... just hunker down if you need to. In time you will settle in to yet another new life.


  1. Tamar,
    I am excited that you are becoming so strong and thoughtful and that you are going to have a chance to live in a city for a bit. May I suggest trying to experience your urban environment on foot as much as possible? I find that even though cities are fast places, I absorb them better (their experiences, and maybe their delicious car exhaust) when I am moving relatively slowly.

  2. Tamar I am so happy you are going to be in Boston though I wish it was for other reasons. But, I'm not worried. I think the liver is your cancer's last retreat and it is on it's way out. I am so sorry I missed so many blog entries--I thought you were done blogging. Can't wait to see you in Boston next week--I still can't believe it!