Heart Songs, Note 25: Thanks Giving, Giving Thanks, 2010
So very much for which to be grateful… Grateful that you are my friend and that I am alive and well and have desire to connect with you at this moment in my/your life. May this find you alive and well and happy to be alive and well and grateful.
In this moment I am wondering, what is the color of gratitude, of gratefulness, of Thanks Giving and Giving Thanks. Somehow me thinks it is far too rich to be confined to one color alone, so this note will have within all the colors of the rainbow, starting with the ruby red of a long-stemmed rose I was given last night.
This time last November, my daughter Laurel had just flown over from Hawaii to be with me, snow was deep in Flagstaff, and in Sedona, my house had just been gutted by fire, my physical history erased in a matter of hours. My daughter and I spent our days digging through charred left-overs, choking on toxic fumes; at a night in the privacy and comfort of a friend’s loaned house, we chatted like best friends. We feasted, resting our frayed nerves, at a meal donated to us by the Heartline Café, which had been burned out about a year previous and understood the depths of disorientation to which such can take one.
Somehow, even from the very first moments, when I arrived home from playing a concert about the birth of Christ to find my house and belongings gone to the hunger of fire, I knew that something magnificent had just been gifted to me. What I could not know. I knew I was safe and I knew I was totally taken care of – the how’s of this truth were irrelevant to my deeper understanding of OK-ness. Even then, I felt a deep gratitude: I was alive; I had my viola! The Sedona Community Center gifted me a phone within the hour – I had no phone numbers, but I did have communication, miracle of miracles. Clothes (and scissors and paper and water and scotch tape and paper towels, you name it) began arriving the next morning. People slipped me cash at the grocery store. Within 48 hours a local not-for-profit, Cornucopia, had set up a bank account in my name so that people who had whereof to donate had a place to send it and get a tax-deduction. By the hour and day, my community got bigger and bigger – people I knew personally, and many that I did not, all there with helping hands and hearts. I was whelmed with the love coming out of the woodwork towards me. To this day, I dress daily in love as most of the clothes I own are gifts from friends – and from strangers who heard the story.
The anniversary of the fire passed a few days ago, with attention, but without melodrama. I was amazed and delighted to find that I simply had no ‘regret’ – to the contrary, joy. Acceptance of what is, is such a miracle. I planted seeds the day before the anniversary on the full moon. My land is happy. Friends come by to help me weed and clean and share Presence.
I have decided to build: a passive solar adobe home. My builder is building this house without a profit to himself – because he wants to. I am so grateful. I’ve been dreaming of living in a circle with a crown chakra for years – the master bedroom will be exactly that!
I came back to Arizona from my several months of journeying still unclear what would be next for me. I played a concert with the Flagstaff Symphony – to which I have belonged for 15 seasons, this being the 16th! The English horn player who sits behind me and had fallen in love with a sweater crafted of hexagons that my adoptive daughter had made for me some 20 years previous – gifted me with a look-alike sweater she had created over the summer! Thank you dear sister.
Within days of being back in Arizona, I knew that I would rather live here than anywhere else: my car battery had died over the summer, and I knew exactly where to go to replace it!
Seriously: the light here, like the Light in Jerusalem, is a direct connect with eternity. The air is dry and clean. The red carved sandstone rocks of Sedona are a daily changing tapestry of art extraordinaire. Oh, and the sound of water, the magic of the sound of running water in the desert, and a rock-sit friend with which to share it. Yes, long-term friends make a difference – a big difference — to one’s sense of belonging, when everything else in one’s life has morphed.
My enormity of gratitude has simply grown and grown over the sometimes long months of this past year. Yes, I had moments of severe doubt – but only moments. I believe these moments were a part of the necessary emptying.
The deepest gratitude has been in the witnessing of how I am simply different as a result of the scouring of the fire. I like this new me better, and she sure is a whole lot easier to live with! Fear that I have carried and worn all my life is simply gone. How wondrous and miraculous! My mind is empty most of the time – that is, empty of needless thought – and appreciative of the tiniest details of this moment. Rumination, judgment, longing, are all gone, gone, gone…. Gate, Gate, Para Gate, Para Sam Gate, Bhodi swaha. Some folks meditate for years to obtain what a simple house fire accomplished for me in two ½ hours. How cool is that!
I was born with a very keen and intelligent mind. I’m imagining I am still very bright (in fact my Light has increased logarithmically!). The sweet thing (and it truly feels very SWEET) is that my head is often simply at Peace, my heart open and full (for no ‘reason’). Period. I am much more Present to Now; stories of then and when have little allure – hell-of-a-place from which to design and create a house for my future! What’s that?
So, when I ‘remember the fire’, as I did last week on November 21, it is in a Now that I am witnessing the who of me — currently homeless, a year later, full with all the details needing to be handled — how deeply tranquil I feel, and how quietly joyous I am. I am so grateful for this.
I truly wish this state were something I could package and give away to the rest of the world. I do feel that in Being it, in Being the Love I am/we are deep down in my/our souls, we do bit by bit transform the world around us. We are the Change for which we have been waiting.
And, Yes, it is enormously disorienting at almost 70 to have no home, no desk on which to order my life (or not!), not even a regular place to sleep… And, YES!, so what!
I have so much, much, much more inwardly than I ever had before, and so much, much, much more than most of the population of this precious planet will ever have – what on earth could I concoct for my mind to worry about? Sure, I’m scraping to gather enough funds together to do what I need to do . . . I could worry about that, but frankly, why bother?
And anyways, how many of us get the opportunity of having to start over from scratch, just when we thought we were settling into our ‘golden years’. Great wake-up call! In fact, my life feels so golden, even in this current homeless itinerant state, that I do anticipate meeting the love of my life just about any day now – it could even be tomorrow, Thanksgiving Day. Thanksgiving is such a wonderful day. Thanksgiving is close to my heart. My one daughter and her daughter were each born on a Thanksgiving day, and my old dog Niawen, now totally mindless in her puppy Alzheimers, and my little dog Mojud were also born on a Thanksgiving day…
Yes, Thanks Giving, what a wonderful day on which to meet one’s Beloved! And, as I said, since every day is for me a day of great Thanks Giving and Giving Thanks – it really could be just about any day now that he, my Beloved, and I shall meet. And, should you happen to know him – please, pretty please with butter and honey on it, do introduce us! We will both be ever grateful to you.
My little RV that was home for so many months, despite an electric cord extended over by my neighbor, has failed me in comfort now that the night-time temperatures have dropped down to freezing. The grace,… I have been offered two house-sits since I returned in late October and am very open to more coming my way – in fact, one for a few days in January just arrived in an email. Thank you my brother, you know who you are.
For this moment, grateful, I sit in a friend’s warm home in West Sedona, at a desk, with an overhead light, and a chair just the right height to type easily at my computer. Details. In gratitude, I appreciate details upon details, details building moments, moments warping into hours, and then these hours growing into days and weeks of – yes, more gratitude.
There is so very much to be thankful for, and for which to be grateful. I am grateful to hold you in my heart, just you, for this moment of sending. May love fill your being abundantly. Happy Thanks Giving, Giving Thanks to you.
Much love to you, my friend, my sister, my brother, and to you too, my Beloved, in gratitude I am, 🙂 Marianna
My contact information remains the same:
Email: well – at – hartsong – dot – net
Postal mailing address: PO Box 4394, Sedona, AZ, 86340.
Thank you for being a part of my life. I look forward to hearing from you, to seeing and being with you. Bless your heart.