This year May arrived with a burst of heat and a gust of wind, a particularly unfortunate combination for me.
Nothing else antagonizes my allergies like this springtime duo. And when I’m in the midst of one of my rapid fire sneezing fits, don’t even bother trying to comfort me with a well-intentioned bless you, because you’ll have to repeat it so quickly and so often that you’ll end up gasping for breath, just like me. (But at least your eyes won’t be red and itchy and watery.)
So. I was feeling kind of down. Can you tell?
My allergy medicine was struggling to keep up and all I could foresee was at least another two months of misery.
My spirits rose momentarily as I looked ahead to 4th of July fireworks, which symbolize the end of allergy season for me.
But then I started thinking about how hot it would be and how summer would drag on and blah, blah, blah.
Yes, you might say I was doing a wee bit of catastrophizing.
And then things began to turn.
I had a good night’s sleep.
The temperature dropped a few degrees.
I wandered through the garden for a bit.
All of which helped, but what actually helped the most was that it got me to a place where I started to remember.
Or, as I like to say, re-remembered.
Because this is not the first (or last) time I will need to remember this.
And as I began re-remembering what I know about myself and summer, I started writing in my journal:
I like gardening in the evenings, puttering among the plants as the heat abates and the sun begins to drop.
I love being outside during the magic hour, when day transforms into night.
I enjoy walking through the neighborhood in the dark, guided by the brightness of stars and moon.
There’s almost nothing better than a lazy summer day spent outside in the shade with a stack of books.
Summer fruit! Melons. Peaches. Nectarines. Cherries. Apricots. Berries. Farmer’s markets and roadside stands, here I come.
Oh, the beach. My summer sanctuary. This year I’m closer than ever because my getaway home in Sonoma County is less than an hour from some of my favorite fog-shrouded Northern California beaches.
There’s also a delightful thing that happens in August: the Perseid meteor showers.
So now maybe you’re wondering: Why am I telling you all this?
It’s because as human beings we have this wonderful capacity to forget.
I’ve heard it said that if we couldn’t forget, we’d never leave the house. We’d be constantly worried about all the possible dangers out there, everything from car accidents to terrorism.
The problem is, we forget the good stuff too.
We forget that we have this quiet knowing deep within us that’s always been present.
And we need to remember. And re-remember. A lot.
When we have an experience of re-remembering, it’s almost like we’ve had a dream that’s guiding us.
And one of the best things we can do with such an important dream is to create a ritual that physically takes the dream’s message into the world.
One of my rituals is process art.
That’s what anchors my re-remembering dreams in the world.
That’s why I made this collage, so I have something tangible to hold and return to, to remind me of my quiet knowing.
I’ve discovered that the more rituals and artifacts I have, the less likely I am to forget. They help me pull myself back to what I know when I’m in a forgetting place, like I was at the beginning of the month.
What rituals and artifacts help you re-remember your own quiet knowing?
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