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Sunday, February 3, 2013
Healing From Loss
This year Imbolc came to me. Imbolc is the symbolic end of winter. We acknowledge it with candles to light the darkness of the night.
It is also known as St Brigid's Day, and Groundhog Day, February 2.
Here is how Spirit worked with me to produce a deep healing, and increase in awareness, of something I had hidden in my heart.
I have a skill set in anesthesia that is unique. As a cardiac fellowship-trained anesthesiologist, I have the skills to help someone who is one their way to death, come back. This is more than inserting a breathing tube in someone who can't breathe and would die. That is bread and butter anesthesia skill. It is the Cardiac Anesthesiologist who is called to help when a colleague has someone trying to die in the O.R. and they want help with the Code Blue.
Yesterday I saw more blood, gore, and death than I care to admit. All I can say is that during the code I was helping in, I saw Our Lady in the corner of the room. She said that she would come back for this person later, but that this patient would survive the code long enough to make it out of the O.R. There is a big difference between a death in the O.R. and death in ICU, by the people who count those things. And as the pupils grew fixed and dilated, and the v-fib grew coarse, I was inspired to suggest an amp on Sodium Bicarb. It worked! And patient went to ICU. I checked this morning on the computer. Our Lady was correct.
After my twenty-four hour in-house call at the hospital, it was my turn to see Nana in the nursing home. She said, 'I am hungry' and there was a tray and a chair next to her. I tried to feed her, but it was not at all like feeding my baby seven years ago. I couldn't navigate the teeth in the barely opened mouth. I managed juice. Everything is thickened, because she can't swallow right. Then the nurses and nurses aides' came. I asked for instruction on how to help her eat. I watched. I learned. I helped.
Nana asked for the wheelchair. I took her around the entire building. She delighted in the beautiful orchid displays by the front.
There was once a time when taking care of the sick was done in the home, and the dead were washed and dressed by women. I felt the Goddess, in all of the suffering that was being treated by the workers, both men and women, but mostly women, at the nursing home.
When I heard the husband of Nana's roommate, who is incommunicative, praying in Samoan, and saw him bow his head and hold her hand, I saw the fruit of a lifetime lived in Love.
In the meantime, I was texting and calling my sister to help decide placement for mother when she leaves the hospital. It is our request to have them be at the same facility, as there is a rehab section that would be nice for mom.
All of this didn't phase me. I just keep going and going. But when my sister said that Target had a clearance sale on the tall seven day Votive candles I had just run out of, I decided to go. I bought every one they had left. There were fifteen in all. A deal at eighty-three cents each. They had the scent in them, and go for over two dollars at the grocery store.
Sicilian Orange. A label on another candle, a soy one, caught my eye and also stabbed my heart. Nana is from Sicily. Her house had just been sold to pay for her long-term care. Lilac & Honeysuckle. Dad. His favorite scents. For years we tried to get a lilac tree to grow in Southern California. It never worked. Our winters were not cold enough. Instead we grew honeysuckle on both fences that surrounded the back yard. The fragrance of honeysuckle in June is one of my favorite memories from childhood. I would pinch the bottom of the blossom, pull back the stamen, and catch a drop of nectar on the tip. I enjoyed many of these. Gardenia Lily . Fresh gardenias were always in a bowl in my home I grew up in. Memories flooded my mind of my life with my parents. Beach Paradise. The beach is a huge part of where I grew up. It is always within me. Wildflower Meadow. That is my safe place I go to in my mind, when I was seven and walking on fallen logs with a friend at Sequoia. Life was so exciting and beautiful and fresh then. Bali Sunrise. This one I have yet to understand, but was guided to buy it. Sweet Spun Sugar. I bought a big one, pink, for Erzulie. We go back, and she has always looked out for me. She keeps me always at my best, and I appreciate that a great deal.
I hadn't realized how important it is to accept death, and loss, and suffering, with something to focus upon; in my case, it is a series of candles I will enjoy in my home over the next weeks. I can smile because it happened, and look forward because I took the time to acknowledge where I had been in life.
Keep your eyes open for similar help from Spirit on Healing from Loss in your life too. Happy Imbolc. And Blessed Be.