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Archive for November, 2012

My Autumnal Cleanse

Recently I received a near-giddy posting from my fun cousin in Southern California excited about beginning her Autumnal Libra New Moon cleanse. She shared a beautiful Garry Liddell photo of a huge, craggled, old Japanese maple, in full fall regalia, highlighted by the slanted autumnal sunlight. She was excited about her cleansing trek, but a little anxious; “Days 2 & 3 are the hardest.” And she shared her plans to lay low and practice chakra meditation to get through it.

I smiled to myself and slightly, momentarily, envied her current path in life – she’s a happily married empty-nester with three beautiful and thriving daughters; a kind and successful husband; the flexibility to pursue her own interests, a gorgeous home with views of the Pacific ocean; good friends and of course, wonderful family (mostly) around her. I recalled our recent celebration of her 50th birthday on Martha’s Vineyard where we had our Tarot cards read by a good family friend. As I recall, hers was full of delight and mystical adventure – priestess kinds of things – and mine was full of challenges and a really yucky card of a guy lying on the ground with ten swords in his back. I pondered that a bit at the time, and just accepted that some of us have tougher journeys than others. Not that I can complain. Indeed, I’m sure many would gladly take MY journey (and swords, such as they are) over their own, so we learn to appreciate the paths we have chosen. My mantra of many years has been, “Good for her/him/them; good for me.” No envy – just happiness for others’ success, along with contentment with my own.

Well, day 2 or 3 of the cleanse came, along with, I suspect, the natural euphoria brought about by the body’s state of ketosis, and another email emerged from the mystical cousin in southern California. This one came with a gorgeous photo of a fading blue sky over the Pacific Ocean, highlighted with multiple drifting contrails and complex cloud formations. The photo was accompanied with a sound recording of Danny Boy in New Age format, as it had started playing on her home stereo system right as she was taking the picture; surely a subtle Universal homage to her Irish heritage.

She forwarded the photo and the New Age Danny Boy to a blind list of friends, generously sharing her blissful experience as well as the many images she saw in the cloud formations (God, Poseidon, Neptune, you choose), along with a Rorschach challenge to identify our own visions in the clouds.

As I toyed with the photograph, I was struck by the irony of our situations. Here I was, on the east coast, working from home on a technical report about missile defense systems and airspace exchange, while our annual carpet cleaners were upstairs, doing their damndest to clean the twelve months of crystallized cat urine remnants and dog feces residue out of our floor coverings so we could enjoy perhaps a few weeks (at most) of pristine rugs – before the next bout of Jack Russell IBS, or new foster-dog leg lifting, or mystery cat markings – and the countdown begins – until the next fall carpet cleaning.

Though my cousin certainly has plenty of animals of her own and probably her own carpet cleaning schedule, our current “autumn cleansings” couldn’t be much different on this day.

Next fall, after I make my annual call to my favorite carpet cleaners, I think I will contact my West Coast cousin for her Libra New Moon Cleanse recipe and join her in her quest. That way, I’ll not only have clean rugs, but I’ll have a renewed system, and just maybe, get my own song from the Universe while I’m enjoying the cloud formations. And who knows, I might even pull a priestess card.

Yes, here’s to autumnal cleansings – in whatever form they take in your life. May they give you renewed energy and hope, along with a positive vision of another year, full to the brim of whatever you value most.

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