Streams of water in the desert, part 96

Monday 10 December 2007

When I was ill with CFS, oftentimes alongside my various bodily dysfunctions, aches, pains and tremors would be an accompanying anxiety. Like a low voltage electrical charge, it pulsed through my body. Sometimes it was so strong that it was all I could do to not go a bit mad, being stuck on the couch, fatigued, while at the same time my exhausted adrenal glands tried to cope with this relentless buzzing throughout my body. Sometimes it kept me awake at night, so real that it felt like I should be able to hear it, that it should be keeping everyone else awake. It's very difficult to explain how that felt; it was like a physical manifestation of a body out of kilter, an immune system malfunctioning. It was terrible.

Perhaps it's the reason why I find even generalised ill health to be so unbearable these days. It's like having been made allergic to any kind of bodily dysfunction so that even having a cold feels worse than it used to before I got sick. Funny, when I was in the throes of my illness, I would have given anything to just have a common cold and have that to deal with. Now I'm well, even having a common cold feels like falling back into the CFS abyss. Illogical, yes.

Good things always come out of bad things, however, and the good thing I gained from those horrible years is a deeper root system. It was necessary. I had no choice but to delve down deeper, a stretching further down of the roots, like a stretching on the rack, a desperate search for water. But I found it.

And I'm finding it again today. My body doesn't want to work very much today, and the insistent clamour of anxiety that accompanies toxic die-off is a much louder voice than the one of my body that says "rest". I have had several years' experience, however, of learning to listen to the stiller, smaller body voice and to not give so much weight and power to the strong insistence of the clamouring anxiety, difficult as it is to do. Sometimes, I have to return over and over again, to tell myself yet again, that it is okay for my body to rest when it is in a detoxing state. You would think it would be logical, but there has always been this accompanying anxious insistence that I do something other than rest, whenever any form of ill health is in the room. Self-nurturing is a powerful weapon of defusement in this situation. Today that has come through my morning pages; this afternoon it shall come through an adjournment to the couch, with blanket, books, a cup of tea and the TV remote, into solitude, peace, centering prayer and communion. Even everyday moments are holy.

Finding peace in the midst of the clamour is always surprising. Oh! Peace is here! Even though you know this and believe this, that peace lies buried beneath the desert floor, and encourage others to go searching for themselves, there is still a part of you that doesn't believe it, that is shocked when peace and love and truth and beauty come and kiss you on the lips. Even though you are cut from the same cloth, the apple of Peace/Love/Truth/Beauty's eye (despite everything), you are still surprised when they turn up. Sometimes you wonder if, in an age still yet future, when in some inexplicable way you and Peace/Love/Truth/Beauty are wedded, webbed, welded more closely, face-to-face in dimensions yet unknown, if all of life, each moment, will not be a delicious delight at their presence even while they have absorbed you and you see them and are changed. Maybe that's how you could go on and on and on forever, if that's how it is going to be, living in this but never, in some lovely childlike way, coming to terms with it, as if we are perpetually six years old on Christmas morning. Or always in love, the heady first moments. Always at the brink of orgasm and always with our noses buried deep in a recently-rained-upon earth.

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