Happy Summer Solstice!
I just returned from a routine sunset walk with our goats. Once the mid-Summer sun starts bowing towards the horizon, our caprine family get restless, knowing there is a good chance they will get to roam the desert until dusk hits night. June is an especially exciting time for all of us because the Saguaro fruit is ripening and we hunt it down with competitive vigor. The deal is that I get the fruit and they get the shell. They don't actually know that, but my keen eye can spot an intact and untouched fruit from a distance, and I pounce on it before they come across it. I have been exploring the pristine 90 acres of desert behind our house for 13 years now, and am therefore very familiar with the elder Saguaros that inhabit this land and the ones that bear the most fruit come harvest time. Armed with a long saguaro rib as my tool, I have learned how to skillfully knock the fruit off the tip of reachable arms and then ravish the feast. Oh, what glorious rewards for us desert folk who dare to live through the scorching heat of Summer.
On this last day of Spring, I look back on a year of deep-rooted, profound lessons around physical health. As many of you may know, I believe that sharing my personal experiences can help inspire others. Ever since I was a wee child, I have dealt with varying physical ailments – from constant ear infections as a toddler to having my spleen, tonsils and appendix removed before the age of nine. Looking back, I realize that there were advantages that came with being a sickly child; my working single mom would stay home to spend time with me or my dad would fly across the Atlantic (from NYC to Bern, Switzerland) to tend to me when I was in the hospital. I also didn’t mind missing school, an institution that I never much enjoyed attending. In addition, I believe I developed a pattern in my teens and early adulthood in which I would use illness as a crutch when I couldn’t handle the psychological trials and tribulations of life. Living without a spleen compromises the immune system and has continued to make me more susceptible to catching bugs and viruses as well as increasing the time it takes to recover. And so, my body is imprinted with cellular memory that seems to be the most challenging old habit to kick. Yet, I always come back to health with deeper insight and new healing tools.
Many of my gifts have and continue to arise from those lessons life has brought me. I would not have dedicated my life to the metaphysical and healing arts had it not been for these challenges. Nor would I have become a Reiki master, a mystic teacher, a natural perfumer, created Kate’s Magik or met some of the most amazing, courageous people – including the love of my life. It is my life’s purpose to encourage those whose lives I touch to keep rising out of the ashes by summoning the courage and faith needed to heal, grow and find a way back to balance.
And here I sit on Summer Solstice Eve in my writing room with cool air blowing on me as this Season’s bounty ripens in the different regions of our hemisphere; relying on the right temperature, moisture, wind and nourishment to produce a good harvest. I realize that more than ever this metaphor needs to be applied to our own daily practices. In these trying times of political, religious and environmental turmoil, it is more imperative than ever to pay constant and consistent attention to the state of our mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. We must remember that our principal source of wealth is our vital life-force, our health, and our reserves. If our tank keeps running on empty, we cannot effectively serve our purpose. We need ample fuel to care for ourselves, contribute our gifts and share our spiritual wealth by inspiring, encouraging and living by example.
I recently read (somewhere in one of my many books written by a great sage) that our sole purpose in this world is to help others move through life. This idea resonated strongly with me, and I encourage you to ponder and turn it over in your mind…food for thought.
Blessings for a balanced Summer!