Well, the wounds to my hand are healing. It is less painful and a change of dressing and hand therapy 3 times a week is helping. My body is less sore. I can type with my left hand and the use of my now free right thumb makes it less difficult. The townhouse is still in a pretty shambolic state with boxes and paintings and stuff all over the place. How I would love to just sort it out once and for all!
The existential questions that have come up for me are not: ‘Why me dear Lord?’ Or, “What have I done to deserve this?”.
The questions that I am dealing with right now as I heal, concern ‘impermanence‘ and ‘developing patience’.
I know that one of the Buddhist tenets is the impermanence of lives and things. I am not even considering my own life (miraculously spared) for the purposes of this blog post; rather, I am facing the necessity of addressing ‘impermanence’.
I am faced with tossing things out – permanently. Much has already been given away – furniture, curtains, household goods, clothing, endless other things I was ruthless about in my desire to simplify before the final move to the townhouse.
But what to do with my late father’s school and university reports; writings of my late mother’s; my own; photographs; correspondence – consign them to non-existence? What does this mean if I do this? Have their records served their purpose and now I must let go my attachment to them? I know that I will not be invalidating my parents or myself if I destroy what was once theirs and mine … but still … photographs of grandparents? Records of my parents service in WW2? All that history, to be no more? Will I ever regret this action if I carry it out? Can I let go of ‘I’ and ‘mine’ as well as on behalf of my parents and ancestors? Can I be dispassionate about this?
And more to the point, is this how it will be when my children consign my ‘stuff’ and my husband’s stuff to the flames or the garbage bags when we die? Will our lives in material form before our deaths be extinct? What will they do with all the family photographs through the years lovingly kept and only occasionally looked at? How many collages can I have made? I do not want walls populated with collages; one or two, yes.
I will be pondering this in the days to come.
On developing patience: this is something that fate has decreed upon me it seems to me. I no longer dart here and there, doing everything quickly and efficiently and, as I have come to realise, having a false sense of pride in my ability to do this. I have to go slowly, dress slowly, I eat sitting down. I walk to the offices of the hand therapists and take that time to observe my new surroundings, or contemplate a dream, or just think about nothing.
I know I said earlier that I would just love to get the townhouse sorted once and for all, but I know that this will take time. I quite like going slow and not being in a rush. There is something of value in this, for me. I have changed my study a few times. I am not rushing it. I still need to unpack boxes and be ruthless in sorting and tidying it. It is winter here in South Africa and though it has been a long time coming, it is now here. Up here on the highveld (2000 m above sea level), it gets bone-chillingly cold although the sun may shine brightly. It is an inward time as Nature rests. I feel in tune with Mother Nature. I think I am developing patience with regard to myself, to me, me-time. I think patience is saying; be kind to yourself, be compassionate, don’t rush… all will be well. I want patience and I to be friends. I want her to show me the way.
Thank you all who have been on this journey with me and your comments and more recently your concerns. It brings a swelling of blood corpuscles somewhere about the heart.