Our friend Bob MacArthur has his own blog. In it he posted this poem by Dawna Markova. The poem was aimed at me. Thanks Bob.
I will not die an unlived life.
I will not live in fear
of falling or catching fire.
I choose to inhabit my days,
to allow my living to open me,
to make me less afraid,
to loosen my heart
until it becomes a wing,
a torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance;
to live so that which came to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom
and that which came to me as blossom,
goes on as fruit.
I am finishing up my second hospital stay where I receive treatment designed to keep the cancer from ever going to my brain. It’s Friday, the Dr. just released me and I can go home. I got here Monday and I am ready to be out and to breathe real fresh air. Things have been going well in general. There are many days when the dark cloud of this treatment or the specter of cancer and the unknown is much diminished compared to the happiness I feel with the family, friends and love that is regular part of my life.
Privately, I have been working on finding the mind sets and practices that will help me to stay present in life without letting anxiety and fear of a recurrence dominate my mood or thinking. I only have 6 more weeks of treatment left. When I began I had 18 weeks. I can feel the end of this phase approaching. The end of this treatment will be a moment to mark for me, and I am looking forward to it.
I have done some things lately that surprise me. I joined the Unitarian Fellowship in Bend. I’m not a joiner and I certainly don’t have “faith” in the Christian sense, but I like the brand of activism the Unitarians partake in and it’s easier to join in with what they are doing than it is to have always find my own ways to contribute and agitate. Call it lazy, I’m calling it efficient and more social. I also like the intentional process of going to a Sunday service and quieting my brain for an hour to think pensively and mindfully. It feels right, but weird.
Another surprise was going to an Al-Anon meeting with Moe last week and finding it enormously refreshing. Something I know to be true about me – but I don’t know what to do about it – is that my co-dependent behaviors can disrupt my most intimate relationships. The third step of AA is about “turning it over” as in “We have made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understood him.” Of course this expression doesn’t exactly square with my beliefs, but I do like the implicit assumption that some things are just worth turning over or deciding not to try and solve. If turning it over is connected to “give it break” I definitely am in for that, too. Everything has a time I suppose. Some things are either unsolvable or it’s just not the right time to work on them, so turn them over. Amen.
Re-reading these words, I think what is actually going on for me is all about time; how I use it and what it means to me. It’s good work for me I think, but for now I think I shall just turn it over and focus my thoughts on having a nice weekend outdoors with family and friends and music.
Wishing the same for you.