Monday, March 10, 2008

Of boils and Goddesses

What happens when you mix a staph infection, the Goddess tarot, a Fiction Friday prompt and Julia Cameron’s ‘morning pages’ medative practise?
A trip into the Soul that’s been a long time waiting.

W ednesday morning, as I was attempting to slide out of bed, from between Dave and Dylan, there was a blinding pain. When I got out of the shower I thought to look and discovered a raised and inflamed area on my inner right thigh, a hand’s span in diameter almost! My first thought was an ingrown hair or a blind pimple. The following day after a 24 hours of green clay packs on it and some rather persistent nausea, I had to relent and re-diagnose. The painful and vicious ‘thing’ was a boil. I still grimace when I have to say the word …. Urgh!

This is the third time in my adult life that I’ve been struck down with a staph infection. In the past I’ve been really, really sick before the boils have appeared – fevers, night sweats and terrors, nausea, diahorrea and epic lethargy. The ‘a huh!’ moment has come with the skin eruptions. This time though, my body seemed to save all its energy for the building pustules – how nice! Or so I thought!

Three days of green clay last week helped to reduce the swelling, the pain and the heat in the area. The nausea seemed to go, as did the diahorrea and my energy faltered on the side of an upswing, rather than the down swing. Now five days on my boil hasn’t gone away and to my mortification, another raised its ugly head yesterday morning on my neck – on the right side again. Sigh! There is obviously more to it.

Friday I went onto Mystic Medusa’s blog to see what was happening there, discussions about the dark moon cocoon feeling. I mentioned that I had boils – hoping that someone would be able to offer up an energetic explanation for what was happening. Jack pot – there was plenty of wisdom on offer. Louise Hays says boils are about anger boiling over. Really? Hadn’t Anger and I already done the hard yards earlier on in the year – haven’t Anger and I been dancing a passionate tango for years now. Surely there is not more there? Surely? The affirmations to go with boils and carbuncles are “"I express love and joy and am at peace" and "I release the past and allow time to heal every area of my life." The final one made more sense to me … and even more so this morning. After all any type of awakening for me is a slow unfolding process!

Dan reinforced all of this asking me 'what’s boiling or on the boil', where was my life 'boiled'. What was cooking? Not a lot in my oven that’s for sure – for more than a week I’ve been unable to lift the oven even though every other adult can do so. The ignition works but no matter how long I hold the knob down the flame wont stay. Dan also reminded me that our ailments can be viewed as symptoms of the soul – as healers.

So by Friday afternoon I’d assembled an interesting collection of wisdom – none of which was really geling with me.

Saturday was the New Moon, a blissfully, watery beginning to a new lunar cycle. As I wrote here I make wishes on the new moon and then I pull two cards from my Goddess Oracle deck. It is always spot on – the wishes and the message from the Goddess. I drew my cards in the picnic area at the foot of Mount Tibrogargan and thought how very pertinent to where I was situated at the beginning of another lunar cycle.

The Goddess messages for this lunar cycle came from the Haiwaiian Goddess Pele at the top, ancient British Goddess Sulis, from the healing spas in Bath.

Pele bought to me her the wisdom, that of awakenings:

….when necessary
With dramatic, fierce volcanic eruptions
I wake you up
With lava and fire
I say “pay attention”
-Goddess Oracle-

I’ve had for the last week a restless slip stream of energy, wanting to get on, break out of the nurturing cocoon that I’ve been hibernating in, reconnecting with my Self and filling the cup that was sorely parched. It’s what has been in the forefront of my mind, this need to re-emerge, but perhaps the plan to exercise my new butterfly wings is a little premature. Dramatic, fierce volcanic eruptions sounds a little like a boil wouldn’t you agree? This illness is saying ‘pay attention’, but attention to what?

This cycle the wisdom of Sulis permeates the lower stream, filling in the details with her the wisdom of the illness/wellness dance. I often take the lower card to be the energy that is passing through and out of my life, or something that is unconscious. Rarely does it represent the here and now – making me realyl pay attention, looking for the hooks and the connections.

The healing waters at my shrine
brought clarity
mended holes
opened vision
allowed flow
with energy flowing
The dance of life resumes
- Goddess Oracle-

Friday I finally got around to writing my article for Down to Birth about my experience of losing my Self in my mothering experiences to date and how devastating it has been for me. I’ve been thinking quite a lot on how to nurture and nourish myself in small, simple, loving ways and the second part of my article went through the importance of having time and space to ourselves. It’s no surprise then that a lot of the wisdom offered in the paragraphs on Sulis are about how “have you been ignoring your own deep requests for more time, more space, more attention.” In that regard – I’m glad that I have awoken to this need and I’m consciously working with it and alerting others to it as well. I’m getting accustomed to making my needs a priority, nourishing my energy and allowing new ways of being me that support this healing process.

My friend Catherine, using 'The body is the barometer for the soul' by Annette Noontil told me boils or carbuncles are, ‘stirred up emotions that you let out, because the stagnation of a concept has come to a head.' That about sums up where I am at the moment and the fact that I have had my eyes opened to what happened with my connection to my Self over the last four years.

“It came to pass that I built a succession of cages around myself – like my own internal labyrinth of imprisonment. Somewhere at the centre, somewhere on this transition through motherhood I’d dropped the Self off and forgotten to go back and pick Her up. Then I’d got busy, distracted and forgot that She even existed.”
‘Finding my Self’ - article for Down to Birth Autumn

Knowing all of this … I still have my boils! As always I ‘get it’ – the yin is well functioning, but don’t know where to go to from there … a serious yang deficit. And then I stumbled onto it by pure accident … a gift from the Universe?

One of the lovely astrofiends on Mystics Blog had suggested that I meditate while I was in my cocoon. Mediation is something that I love, but I always struggle with. I need a guided meditation to get best effect and I never seem to find any good meditations … and then I realised that my Goddess Oracle book has mediations … there is a meditation to travel to and with Sulis … and the title of the meditation … “Recalling and rebuilding your inner fire” and suddenly all the lights went on for me.

That’s what all this has been about. All this musing on nourishment, nurturing, finding the Self etc etc. It is about going back and connecting again with my inner fire – this is the elemental essence of my Self. And by a beautiful stroke of synchronicity, Fiction Friday’s prompt had been about fire … and after my character Brigit danced by/with the fire, she talks about why she dances with the fire what it means to her:

“When I dance with the fire I no longer have to be cautious, or show restraint – I can be impulsive, temperamental, and wilful. I forget that this is a 21st version of Hades.”

She bent down and pulled on an old V neck jumper.
“There are beings called salamanders – elemental beings of fire. They say that the faces you see in the fire are them. Salamanders are Will itself. When I dance I find my will again.”

She threw the stick to him. He caught it one handed, feeling her sweat and the heat of the fire still radiating from the metal.
“Your turn now.”
Fiction Friday 7th March: Fire; dance with me
I understand now that Brigit was throwing ME the fire baton … imploring me to find my Will again, to seek out my face in the flames, to connect with my ‘Will’. Fire is also about the imagination and creativity. It’s also about the burning away of the impurities in the first process in alchemy.

And I’ve got why my boils aren’t going away. I’ve been plastering the heat rising with cool earth. I’ve yet again been smothering and suppressing the fire. Now I need to play with, rather than against the energy. I need to put hot compresses on my skin, I need to draw all of this ‘poison’, these impurities of the soul out, and allow them to flow out like tears for the soul.

I need to be brave and go dance with fire … but first I need to go down to the depths with Sulis.

Post Script: since writing this earlier on today, I’ve got my MP3 recorder to do the meditation. The boil on my leg has expanded ten fold in size … it is desperately trying to make its way out. I’ve put a hot compress on it and rested up in bed (it kills to even sit) … so we’ll see what transpires tomorrow?


d sinclair said...

Oh Jodi, love...

try this affirmation:

"even though I have these boils and I feel .... (insert how you feel here) I forgive myself, love and accept myself deeply and completely"

see what thoughts and feelings come up and work these into your affirmations...

let me know how you go after you recognise and affirm what soul is telling you!

d x

d sinclair said...

ps. the Course in Miracles teaches that healing enters in at your level of perception - that is, say yes to medical attention or an offer of some kind of help when its offered. Please be kind to yourself.

Anonymous said...

I find it interesting to see the pacing of the comments and your integration of what they could mean to you... the incorporating of your known methods with some friend possibilities.

I can empathise about the bodies ability to throw up some painful stuff to get us to slow down and deal. I am wondering though at the connection between how fast you've been processing things at kineseology, and whether your body is purging rapidly in a similar way. Maybe Boils are a rather dramatically quick way to move 'poison' residue out.

I hope the pain eases for you soon...

Also seeing you deal with this reminds me that my ex used to get some savage boils/carbuncles on his neck when our first daughter was very young, and sort of illuminates a bit of backplay from long ago in a different light.

Square1 said...

I've never experienced boils, but know well the physical manifestations of a "sick" or malnourished spirit. Interestingly enough the children at this moment are watching a program about Monarch butterflies, and how they nourish themselves.

Here's to a reserve of nectar for your soul... a refreshment when you're done dancing with your fire.

Jodi Cleghorn said...

This is the umpteenth time in the past few weeks that Monarch butterflies have come up ... perhaps this is something I need to look into.

Nectar for the soul ... what a literally divine way of looking at it. I can feel it sticky on my tongue just thinking about it ... and ever so sweet. Just what my poor emacipated soul is yearning.

And Dan - I am treating myself kindly - though my version of kindly may not really be that kind! My leg is really painful if I stand on it for too long - so its been lots of time in bed or on the couch ... its physically forcing me to stop and rest.

Cathering - thanks for the call yesterday - it really meant a lot and I agree with what you are saying. I'm beginning to get frustrated though trying to draw all the crap to the top? I feel like after all the soul searching etc that I'm STILL missing something?

Square1 said...

Here's what I know about Monarch's, and not in a metaphorical sense. They wrap themselves in a cocoon that reminds me of a piece of jade, accented with a guilt edge at the top. I'm not sure of their gestation period, but when they emerge it takes them a little while before their wings dry enough for them to fly. They're a migrator species, which means that they actually survive the winter. They do not eat during the winter months, only sustaining themselves on fat reserves that they build up and drinking water. When they group together on the needles of an evergreen it is a fantastic sight.

This is the third time the image of the Monarch has hit me in the last month, first with my metamorphosis story, then happening upon one of my old drawings, and now this. To me the Monarch symbolizes a promise of majestically beautiful things to come. I'm not sure if my metamorphosis is almost complete or just beginning. Time will tell, given that I am patient enough to wait.

Anonymous said...

I agree that it is very possible that boils can be a manifestation of someone who has a difficult time resolving their anger.
Here are some things that helped me get rid of the boils.

Dont use wash cloths any more. (they store bacteria) just use your hands

use Dial liquid antibacterial soap the orange kind basic dial liquid anti bacterial soap.

use a product called tend skin it comes in a blue bottle hard to find but can be ordered. Put it in a roll on tube so you can apply it directly to the boil.

athlete foot powder/jock itch powder are anti fungus powders use them after you dry off as well as medicated cooling goldbond powder.

get some new towels. ( old towels store bacteria even after they have been washed) .. Dry off really well after each shower.

clean out that bathtub really well. use a couple of bottles of bleach if you have to and make it an all day event of scrubbing and cleaning that tub again and again.

do not shave those areas that break out let your body be natural

when the boils heals use mederma every day . Mederma gets rid of the scar and heals it to the point of it not returning.

get rid of the polyester pants that make you break out.. throw them out.

This is how I got rid of boils once and for all.