Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Move over Marley and Me

So, I'm sitting up and blogging. This says a lot already so I'll try not to be too redundant. I started to feel stronger Sunday evening and Monday's steroids must be adding to the higher energy levels. I am so pleased to be more clear-headed and strong and hope it lasts for a while.

One thing we haven't mentioned but I'd like to share quickly is that Jaci has been taking Mandarin Chinese classes for six weeks! She always comes back in that good mood of one who has exercised their brain in an avenue that is clearly stimulating, relevant, and chosen. I am simply proud of her, using this time wisely, and practicing a skill that we plan to drop like a bomb on the Shanghai bargaining markets when I'm well enough to travel again.

Another thing we have done a bit of is origami. Thank you, Nate, for the suggestion. As it turns out, my good friends, Sandy and Marc, are marrying in October and desire 1001 origami cranes to decorate and bring good luck to their nuptials. They sent me paper and Jaci taught me how to fold and now... ahem, M & S... we are in need of more papers!

Have you ever heard of The Journey or Journeywork? It's sort of a scripted guided meditation take-off from Deeprak Chopra's ideas of cellular healing. In other words, it is the belief that all physical healing has a spiritual component and that you must harness and remember this aspect of your body if you really want to heal completely. I am drawn to the theories and agree that healing is a holistic process (as well as getting sick) and have found myself reading a lot of philosophical, natural remedy, and religious books of late.
Anyway, a few interesting occurrences... When my dear friend, Anna, was visiting a few weekends ago, she generously gave both Jaci and I the best massages we'd each ever had. She is a professional massage therapist as well as an informed and strong believer in some of the ideas I mentioned in the previous paragraph. My sister has had a cramp in her right calf, particularly painful when she attempted to flex her foot, for almost a year. She warned Anna not to do much there because it always hurts, no matter how gentle or careful the pressure. When Anna got there, she did a bit of mini-Journeywork with a very skeptical Jaci. She told Jaci that she had some emotional memory stuck in the muscles there and asked her to just acknowledge this and to consciously "let it go". Although, as I said, Jaci thought it sounded pretty strange, she did her best to "talk to her calf" in her mind and cannot explain how, but she enjoyed Anna's shiatsu long deep strokes into her normally hyper-sensitive leg. And now, to this day, her pain is completely gone.
Crazy, isn't it? If you're still interested in this stuff, one more thing. Anna, for my birthday, got me a Journey Session, meaning a counseling meeting with someone who has been to all of these conferences and guided scores of people through some pretty intense emotional levels to clear out some of the emotional memory junk that causes illness and/or prevents complete healing. This session was finally organized for yesterday and I was so thrilled that Jaci's calf experience spurred her to call my counselor and request a session too. It certainly is not just for someone with cancer or some other grave illness; it's for anyone who wants to heal or grow or explore themselves. I won't speak for Jaci's experience, but I found my 2.5 hour meditation to be very positive, something I'd never tried or experienced before, and instructive. To me, it just makes sense as a complementary medicine: to experience fully your emotions, to release negative sentiments and past blame (including the big one: self-forgiveness), and to just recognize the love that is at the core of yourself and those around you. Anyway, that, in a very small nutshell, is some of what Tuesday's session brought up for me. Thank you, Anna, and everyone who has sent me interesting, educational, and entertaining reading and material during this time of questions and way-too-much time on my hands.

I seriously thought this was going to be a short blog. Sorry for causing a trip to the optometrist to augment your contacts' prescription. You know, lasik is getting more and more affordable...

Two more things. First, the next batch of those yellow bracelets came in and we mailed all of them off today. If you haven't yet e-mailed Jaci your address or the amount you want though, we're waiting on that info! And, of course, if you want more, just let us know.

Secondly, and finally, explaining the blog title. Was it suspenseful having to wait until the end or just annoying?
I have found that our dog, Lola, and I have way too much in common to be simple coincidence. I have made a quick list of why I am now sure that we are not merely just in love but are actual kindred spirits:
1. We're nearly always hungry and thirsty, but we don't really like dry foods.
2. We're easily distracted by games and even more enamored with visitors.
3. We love the outdoors and exercise but mostly just stare longingly out our condo's windows.
4. We both have forearm markings from our IVs.
5. We both are waiting for our hair to grow back. (#4 & 5 are because of Lola's May 2nd spaying.)
6. We both adore Jaci, need her for many basic necessitities, and bug her all day long to give us more attention.
7. We both bathe infrequently.
8. Our sleeping postures are often remarkably quite similar, sprawling and uneven.
9. I think we both whine a lot, although I can't confirm for the same reasons.
10. We will both sit, shake, and roll over for bacon.


joyce said...

Hi Erica!

I loved your list about you and Lola. I definitely think there is some truth in it! I'm glad the meditation was helpful and that both you and Jaci have found something new to pursue.

While driving back up to Toronto, Kent and I were brainstorming ideas for another song for you! We'll be heading to the recording studio in a few weeks...pending permission from the original artist.

Wishing you many good days ahead...miss you heaps,

slucas said...

Ryoukai shimashita! I will dispatch more papers forthwith. Don't bite the mailman!

XOXO Sandy

Erik said...

Erica, that's the best list I've read in such a long time. The bacon line made me laugh out loud (and not just the computer kind of LOLing, where you type it but you don't really do it--I actually laughed out loud in the air, lots of sound, belly laughed).

I love that you are exploring spiritual healing methods and and Journeywork and meditation. That's powerful.

Love you,

Nicholas Maranda said...

Amazing. Inspiring. Sincere. Thanks for sharing your words, as always. I think I am going to look into experiencing a "journey" of my own.
I too, have a Lola. However, mine is of the shrunken variety. Nonetheless, we also both enjoy begging for bacon.

alison said...


Could you send me tour address? E has my email address. Thanks!


Raven said...


Nadaa and I say hello from Thailand! I just wanted to drop you a line and say we're thinking of you, it's good to hear all about your reading and good thinking. I think it might just rub off on me! I totally agree that your state of mind has a large impact on your health and that cultivating positive thoughts can do a lot for you, good for you!
I will be back in Boston at the end of the month so maybe I can pop by depending on how your feeling. Can I bring you something from Thailand? Things are super cheap here!

We're now in Ko Tao a small island in the south but heading home least I am. I have to work, Fletcher has made me broke!

I have some light Vacation reading (ah not!), "All the Shah's Men" about the US deposition of Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh. Fascinating!

Keep strong and in good spirits!


Raven & Nadaa

artineh said...

Hey Erica!
I love the list... there is nothing better than hanging out with our furry friends. They always have a way of cheering us up somehow... I don't know how they do that.

glad to hear you are doing better. Hope it stays this way.

let me known when you're running low on Persian tea.

love ya.

chipishuko said...

hey erica

just want to tell you that me and tania and our daughter ishuko back here in berlin germany will be praying for your recovering and always remember to keep your warm smile