June 12th, 2005
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laughing buddhas

I am here. Where is here. Here is the cool weather of california, the emotional release after a session of accupuncture, time visiting with family. Here is me needing some alone time. So I retreat to the journal for a few minutes. I read the first chapter of “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius” and it makes me teary. (the main character is caregiving for a mother who is dying of cancer. I was warned ahead of time that it would be a hard read for me, hitting close to home. But sometimes it is helpful to see our own lives reflected back to us, to see our own grief, there are things that I forgot about the process of watching someone die.)
I went to see an accupuncturist in Berkeley for the first time last week in an attempt to heal a mass of cysts in my right breast. My doctor recommended surgery to have them removed but I want to try other options first (assuming they are not cancerous), and at some level to try to understand why they are there. I want to believe in the body’s ability to heal itself. Anyone who has had a scare of this sort (I have talked to so many women now with the same situation) will understand the fears that come up and the conflicting opinions of doctors/friends. There appear to be two camps, 1) the “get it OUT NOW” group, and the 2) ‘this is very common’ do not worry camp. I am doing my best to sit quietly with it, hear what my intuition has to say. The beautiful thing to come out of it thus far, (as is common with these things), is the reminder to ‘come back to the body’, to give it some needed love and attention. Something that we all forget while in a state of perfect health.
The accupuncturist said some things that surprised me. He placed his fingers on my wrist in several formations, sat attentively for a few minutes and told me some things that were difficult to hear.
“Are you a person who takes shortcuts often?” he posed. “Yes”, I responded reluntantly, eyes turned to the floor. I brought them up again to a shelf that held several small ceramic Buddha’s, all laughing, tiny robes hanging non chalantly over their round little bellies. For a moment I felt like they were laughing at me. “It is costing you”, he said in a serious tone, eyes looking directly into mine. I swallowed and took a deep breath. I think I knew that but didn’t want to admit it to myself. My need to push through things so that they are quickly finished overtakes me, the end result of completion often more important than the finished product. Such is the way of the human ego.
Patience. I will work on that one. So many things to work on.
But there is an ocean of gratitude that creeps in. I feel healthier physically than I have in many years, I have use of my legs, my brain, my heart, my fingers. I will spend some quiet time everyday to send love to my body, and to my breast. In time I will heal.
Tomorrow we board a plane.

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