Wow. This has been quite an experience. But for this post to make sense, you’ll need to read Part I.
Prior to heading into chemo, round 3, concerned about my allergic reactions to each of the three chemo components, I’d been visualizing my Masts of my Tall Ship, doing nothing. (Really, without reading the previous post, this will make no sense at all. ) I even painted an image to bring home the concept to my body, mind and soul and in particular my mast cells who have a history of overprotectiveness.. thus causing allergies, even analyphylaxis.
Imagine my disappointment when the first chemo was injected and I began to react. I started to cry. Lights flashing, Doc and nurse running, Benadryl galore injected, and.. well, it simply meant a drug induced day (beyond the chemo) that makes me twitchy, out of it, cranky, and raises the concern about if the treatments can continue. Analphylaxis is a rather scary thing, after all. I mean, really, could they even give me anymore steroids and anti-histamines than the crazy amount given pre chemo this time?
I was especially feeling sad that the visualization that felt so right, that was guided by synchronicities, and that I was certain would make a difference, didn’t.
I don’t know if ‘disappointment’ has ever played a strong suit in my life. It’s a judgemental thing, but I truly felt disappointment and said so. It struck me at the time that it’s not a word I use often.
Both the nurse and the doctor patted my hand, sincerely empathetic. The nurse confided in me that they have a ‘special list’.. it’s not posted anywhere, it’s just a list of the special people who seem to have more unusual reactions. She said I was special.. even if I didn’t react again, I’m on their special list. There’s something comforting about that. Simply being acknowledged for what you are going through can be very healing.
While my body settled, before the next chemo drug was injected, I decided to check in with that Tall Ship. What I saw in this visualization surprised me. The three masts were not happy… not happy at all. They had dropped the sails, although the crew had refused to rig them. Their yards.. like arms, were bent and placed angrily on ‘hips.’ Random sparks were shooting off of them.
I thought, “Okay, let’s calm them down.. what can I say to have them settle?” As I watched, I realized that anything I might say seemed condescending. Here were these three masts, proud of their work, doing what they believe is correct to protect me, and I had insisted they do nothing at all. It was a strange feeling as I recognized many things: that the body has a ‘mind’ of it’s own, that I had been a bit controlling, and that I was both empathetic and respectful.. realizing that my mast cells, although wild, had years behind them of thinking they were doing what’s right for me.
I told Mel, my friend who came to support me this day, my quandary. She said, “What if you ask them what they need?”
I asked my Masts, “What do you need?” And honestly I was surprised at the rant.
Picture an overwhelmed, under appreciated mom of young children, on a particularly crazy day… during that moment when someone perhaps condescendingly says, “oh it’s not such a big deal” or otherwise tries to trivialize the feelings of frustration. Ya, not happy. And then finally, someone simply and sincerely (that’s key!) asks, “What do you need?” That mom will know.. “I need a break.” “I need to get away.” or like my Masts said to me, “I need a spa.”
Yes, the Masts ranted that they wanted a spa. Or at least, that was my first ‘sense’ of things. I tried to get a clearer picture of what a ‘spa’ would be for a Tall Ship Mast and I did: They wanted to be sanded, polished, oiled, and refitted.
“Do you actually want to leave the ship?” I asked as I saw a building materialize at a dock nearby. “Do you want to go to the Master Mast Restorers?”
“Yes” was the answer. The crew immediately dissambled the masts and they were transported, rather magically, to the building. I didn’t get to see inside that building.. yet. As my brother wisely pointed out last night as I explained this adventure, “perhaps you’ll still get to go deeper.”
The words, ‘refresh’, ‘renew’, ‘refitted’ and especially ‘reset’ played in my mind, emphasizing the potential of the Masts going to the “Master Mast Restorers.” There was such power in this visualization. I truly hope this means I am on a path of healing my crazy allergic reactions to so many things. Imagine. Yes, I am imagining how amazing this could be.
The next two drug treatments were given that day without any allergic incidence whatsoever. Nurses, Doc, Mel and I were all cheering! Another patient who gifted me with a crystal that morning, because she’d seen what I went through the previous session, also cheered.
And joyfully, in the few days since that treatment, I have felt much better than previous treatments.
I decided to continue to explore this experience with another ‘sketch painting.” That’s the painting posted above. I painted it also, because I wanted to share this experience, and hoped to give you a more ‘visual’ sense, friends, of what that Tall Ship of Mine was doing. Masts rather upset, but the Master Mast Restorers building materializing nearby.
I have no idea if this post makes one bit of sense … because as some of you have known me to often say, our intuitive place, where magic like this can happen, has trouble articulating. “The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant.” said Albert Einstein. I”m not sure my rational mind has quite been able to fully express the wonder of this experience. ~smile~
You know what I love about this painting? This is simply a ‘sketch’… watercolour paint thrown down quickly on Yupo paper, not a lot of thought to the process.. and look at the heart that appeared in the center of the center sail. I love that.
And thank you, each of you who support me and who were sailing with me this past week. I”m curious, anything strange happen to you that day? Were you busy disassembling Masts in your imagination, perhaps?
(The Tall Ship Adventure, Parf III, continues here)