Tuesday, April 27, 2021


I just started a 'program' called A Year to Live. The book is by Stephen Levine. With my dear friend  and Dharma teacher Mary Stancavage. On Saturday she led us in a meditation that set our 'death day', 365 days from 4/25/2021. We have daily practice and we'll be meeting once a month, until we die. 

One of my writing group called it 'morbid'. Granted, I'm two days in but I have thought often about this season. Spring. Will this be my last spring. How can I enjoy it completely. Last year allowed spring to unfold for me in the most intimate and illuminated way. Daily I attended to buds unfurling and weeds flourishing. The vegetable garden was bountiful. The elderberry was prolific and lush. With the fear of death hovering over us all, moments were more brilliant, our very breath life giving or life ending. 

Right now from my window a crow is perched on the top of a maple tree. Unconcerned with the ending of her life. We humans know we will die, just not when. But I know when (hypothetically). I want to be ready to meet it. I don't want to be like my friend James who struggled and suffered and was overcome with fear at the end. 

As I said to a therapist many years ago, "I don't want to be afraid to die because I was afraid to live."

Much love

Friday, April 23, 2021

 Dear friends-

I was diagnosed with a nasty GI bug and put on 2 weeks of horrid meds, which I have completed. Made me feel terrible. Still dealing with the repercussions. There will be a recheck to see if I'm 'cured' and then life goes on. At this point, replenishing my poor gut with fermented foods and probiotics. 

My healthcare provider offered NO help. I know you know. If we want to know what is wrong with us and we want to improve our health, we have to be proactive and do it ourselves. Dr Google helped me to understand what the bacteria was and suggested ways to recover. That's why so many of us visit naturopaths and acupuncturists and chiropractors. Western medicine is so inadequate. 

Of course, western medicine has made amazing advances, for example-vaccines for covid. But who has access to vaccines? Who gets to live and who dies? The inequities are so obvious. I'm lucky. I got vaccinated early. Unlike so many of my fellow citizens. 

I've registered to help with the vaccination effort in Seattle. Just waiting for my 'assignment'. I've asked to work in my neighborhood, which is largely Asian and immigrant Somalis and Ethiopians. 

I guess I'm just angry this morning. 

In other news, I attended another birth yesterday with our young midwife, Emily. It was the family's fourth baby. A strapping boy. She's a pediatric resident and he's a stay-at-home dad. They plan to return to Alaska to work in the Alaskan healthcare system. I'll go visit them on Sunday to see how they are doing and check in on their babe. I wish every mother had access to the type of care we provide. Back in the day, I thought that home birth with midwives would change the world. Ah, my young self. 

We moved the dogwood from the front of the house where it never bloomed to the back of the house and it is covered with blossoms. It needed to be cooler and out of the sun. What do we each need to thrive? 

Apropos of nothing, here is my new Website: mayasgarden.org.

I think it is very pretty. 

May you all be well and safe today. 

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Sunday, April 04, 2021

Dear friends-

I'm back from the wilds of California and Oregon.  I drove many miles in my spiffy new car, blasting tunes and stopping occasionally to pee. Can I say? There were LOTS of folks without masks at rest centers, Safeways and gas stations. WTF. I know many of my fellow brethren distrust vaccines but jeez. How hard is it to wear a mask?? I know, I know. But the numbers of dead are so huge, our little brains or compassionate responses cannot handle it. Unless we know someone who has died, some of us just don't care. I can't comprehend the numbers but  I care, of course I do. Signed up to help with the vaccine effort here in the great NW. I give shots, I can give shots or whatever they want me to do. 

Driving through southern Oregon and into California, the views were breathtaking. Literally. I kept saying, 'holy shit'. Bluest skies, and mountains, some still with snow. Just gorgeous. Mount Shasta area, damn. Every time I drive through there I think I want to move there. I did also pass through burned acres, many burned acres. 

Eden was surprised to see me. She was confused, thought I was her sister at first. Hot springs, Pinnacles National Forest and a stop in Eugene to see old friends. Loved it all. 

Unfortunately I also got news of results from my endoscopy. I have H pylori, a nasty bacteria that causes ulcers and stomach cancer. Awesome. Many of us, maybe 1/2 the population harbors this dread bug. Anyway, I'm taking 5 pills twice a day for two weeks. Yuck. One of them makes my mouth dry and taste nasty. Fun times. Until I'm done with the treatment, there's no point in taking yogurt and probiotics. And I feel less than stellar. In fact, I'm planning to spend today in my bathrobe. I have to make myself take the dog out. But I'm grateful I have a diagnosis and it could be way worse. I've helped my friends who have had cancer and THAT is truly terrible. 

Anyway, I'm glad to be home. It's a typical day here, grey and rainy. I must admit, being in all that California sunshine was lovely. But the magnolia are blooming and so are the daffs. 

May we all enjoy our bodies, in whatever shape they are in at the moment.