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work in progress

Dear Friends,

I had x-rays last week.  I have a lot of pain in my lower back, outer hips and bum that feels different from the fibromyalgia.  Good news:  my hip joints are fine.  Bad news:  my lower back shows severe arthritis, so much so that some of the vertebrae are bone on bone.  No wonder it hurts, eh?  There are also tons of nerves and tendons that connect all around there.  Since the arthritis contributes to soft tissues being irritated and inflamed, this is probably causing the other pain I have in outer hips and bum. (A little fibromyalgic humor:  You know you have fibromyalgia when you’re actually glad when the doctors find something wrong with you on an x-ray.)

There isn’t much to be done.  I’m already taking what medications would be prescribed.  They replace hip joints, but not lower backs.  Exercise as I can tolerate.  (Check.)  It would be great to lose weight, but with taking insulin for diabetes, even with a perfect diet it’s difficult to not gain weight, much less lose it.  Glucosamine makes my blood sugar higher, which if I started it again would mean more insulin, which might lead to further weight gain. I felt I was left with “I’m sorry, you’re all wore out, go home and live with it.”  I’ve been bummed out.  Feeling damned if I do, damned if I don’t.  Feeling like how I feel today might be the best I feel for the rest of my life.  And I’m not feeling so hot today.

From a depth dimension point of view, though, what is fascinating about this are the synchronicities of this with my current painting, and with some of my recent dreams.  A few days before I got the x-rays done, I started a new painting on the theme of Alchemical Marriage. It is about bringing opposites together into a new transformative mix that leads to something that is not yet apparent.  What or whom do I want to be united with in a transformative union?  What came to me strongly is that I need to pay more attention on a minute by minute basis to how I’m feeling in my body.  Do I need to sit, stretch, or walk?  Should I carry on through the pain?  This is a tricky business, as distraction is one healthy way of dealing with chronic pain.  Yet I know that I separate myself from my bodily perceptions more than is best for the long term. (see The Catch 22 of Chronic Pain)

My practice is to set an intention for a painting before I do anything else with the canvas.  This time, the alchemical marriage is to be about uniting my care of mind/spirit with care of body. Above is my work in progress:  a mandorla of gold interlocking two unusually shaped parts of me.  It’s not finished yet, but I wanted to highlight a work in progress. It was after I started painting that I got the good news/bad news.

The night I began the painting, I had a dream about my health that featured an old listless alligator, but that is a subject for the next post.

What an interesting juxtaposition of intention and events. Not exactly sure what that means I’m supposed to do next, but I do see that something is going on that can be quite meaningful for me.

Thanks for reading,

Cat

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