The In-between Times

The notion of in-between times was so romantic to me when I first heard of them. I’d learned of the power of Spirit coming through at dawn and dusk. Those were the times to meditate and to slide through those slivers of space where I could experience more than my seeming regular world could afford me. I learned to scry water, to read cards, to listen with all of my senses and slowly built a foundation to always be in touch with Spirit.

This mid-morning, I find myself sitting at my computer. I am writing a few more pages in my slowly emerging second Daisy mystery novel. There’s a strong feeling of peace within my heart. I’ve placed all other things aside for this time. I’ve come to realize this is an in-between time too.  We received the shipment of our boxes of personal belongings that we sent up from Puerto Rico as we prepared to place our house on the market. We opened them last night and pulled out pots, pans, and art work from Puerto Rican artisans that we cherished and enjoyed several times a year on our trips to the island. I placed a few pieces of art up on my wall and can now enjoy them every day of the year.

This in-between time is bittersweet. I loved my little house in Puerto Rico. This is a time of letting go but also a time of accepting new things into my life. As I wait for a call from the realtor, I pray that the family who is meant to have the house ambles through the serene neighborhood. That they may speak with one of the vecinos who were so helpful to me over the years. The ones who shared food with my Dad. The ones who helped fix the television for him when he started losing the ability to do the things that we take for granted. The ones who called me to tell me it was time to check on him and that the time he needed me more than he wanted had finally come.

This chasm of time is one for Spirit to come through. The feeling of serenity is strong in my office/spiritual space. It is strong within me. It reminds me of walking through the Camuy caves in Puerto Rico. The bats hung above us occasionally tittering. The rocks whispered secrets from our ancient ones. The waters trickled- gently guiding us- ensuring we wouldn’t skate on the slippery paths we tread. I am grateful for this time. I can accept the changes that life brings and anticipate the beautiful new days ahead. I can sit in this moment of time and listen as Spirit tells me that all is okay for today.

I hope that you feel that too. ♥

Theresa

 

Full Beaver Moon

shifting-vibration.com

This week we welcome the Full Beaver Moon! It is the last full moon before the winter solstice takes place in December. This moon has also been referred to as the mourning moon and the frosty moon. This moon was deemed the Beaver Moon for the trappers who busily trapped beaver before the deep cold winter weather set in.

Moving toward the full moon is an auspicious time to set an intention and to work on the fruition of projects. Being called ‘an eager beaver’ was a positive label. Working tirelessly as the beaver who focuses on the job of building dams  reminds us that when there is a job to be done. We can complete tasks more easily with the aide of our community. It’s easy to lose perspective and intention on self and our planned activities during this time of year.

it’s apropos that this year’s full moon is waxing on Thanksgiving. Many of us busy ourselves with meal preparation, early holiday shopping, and with the general bustle of stress at this time of year. For some the full moon magnifies all of this energy tenfold. Relax.

Being the busy beaver who builds dams and bridges and all else they do is hard work. Beavers, when feeling threatened, will bite with their long ever growing sharp teeth. When we bite we don’t feel good afterward.s. The person we’ve bitten hurts pretty darn hard too.

I’m not sure of the beaver’s capacity to retreat but we have the ability to say no mas or Calgon take me away! Take restful moments for yourself. A soothing bath, a massage from your honey or scheduled in advance at a spa can help. We can’t control everything and the belief we can adds to the stress. Do something that will bring tranquility into your life. It’s your holiday too. Enjoy it!

Remember that the beaver rests too!

XO

Theresa

Savoring the Sweet

 

Two years ago I packed up most in my little house in Puerto Rico with the help of my son and we boarded a plane back to New York. With my father in tow, in a wheelchair, and two little dogs we must have made a spectacle going through customs. I was almost certain that it was the right decision to bring my Dad back to the home that I knew, not the one he’d become accustomed to and enjoyed for eight years. Living in Puerto Rico had been, for him, the realization of a dream to return to his home town. My uncle and aunt were in frequent contact with him. There were games of dominoes held on the porch. Relatives and friends found their way to the little yellow and white house we call home on the island. Little by little the family dynamics changed, my aunt passed away suddenly, my uncle became bedridden, and my father began forgetting how to get home when he picked up his morning bread at la Panadería. He stubbornly refused to come home to New York, Not yet!

A neighbor called me one Saturday morning to tell me that the police were going to issue an order for my arrest for neglecting my father if I didn’t come and take care of him quickly. I flew down the next morning and stayed with him for a month. I thought about staying in Puerto Rico. I almost quit my job. I decided to return to work the night he wouldn’t go inside and it was late. I worried that I couldn’t handle it myself and I was right. My dad was very ill. He could barely get around. We found out through MRIs and CT Scans that he not only had multiple strokes but he also had Alzheimer’s disease. We went through the ups and downs of moving him into our Brooklyn apartment that had never been his. The sound of the lock opening in the middle of the night as he attempted to flee is something that I’ll never forget. The progression of home attendants that didn’t work out for various reasons was disheartening. It was tough to say the least. We’re fortunate that we found a fairly affordable assisted living facility for him. He is well taken care of and I can sleep at night without burdensome worry.

Two years later I’m back in Puerto Rico and have placed my little yellow and white house on the market. My anxiety has been high. I’ve been torn between the idea of letting go of a dream. I can truly understand what emotional hoarding is all about. I know deep in my heart that when I do sell the house that I will be left with a blessed open space in me for new things that my Higher Power wants me to experience. Being tied to an empty house is not fruitful for me. There are so many losses I feel about my dad. His guitar playing, his singing, and most definitely his cooking! I miss his storytelling. I miss him. He’s still very much alive but I miss him. The interactions stolen by progressive Alzheimer’s disease is heartbreaking. But the house is not my father.

I imagine that a new family will move into this lovely space and enjoy meals here such as the ones we cooked in our happy kitchen. They will appreciate the early morning sun pouring through the dining room windows, and the neighbors who are caring and kind and who weathered Maria- that awful hurricane that devastated the island. They will enjoy the nearby beaches, the glorious sunsets, and the sounds of the coquis chirping throughout the night.

I don’t have all the answers. I know that the house captured my heart and that as I ease through the motions of selling it that someone else will come forward and also feel the life and love that this corner of the world holds. So, we’re packing and sharing memories. Today, my daughter reminded me that I can come back to this beloved island whenever I want. It’s bittersweet this trip, but the sweetness is one that I savor. We’ve had a good run here on Puerto Rico. My dad got to live out meaningful years here. We visited often and loved every day we were here. For all this, I am grateful.

 

Full Hunter’s Moon

whats-your-sign.com

October’s Full Hunter’s Moon is most exciting! Autumn is fully here. The colors of the leaves are magnificent and there’s a chill in the air! The image of the hunter brings Ochosi, warrior in the Orisha tradition, to mind! Ochosi’s hunt is done for necessity, for food, for clothing, and warmth to his or her family.  For survival. This is the way of the Natives who don’t waste the blessed resources that are provided for them by nature.

The modern hunter who kills game for sport is not the hunter that I am speaking about here. That is the one who does so without any consideration of the balance of the Earth. The one who kills for trophy and for decoration of his or her living spaces. The one who does so for recognition in a photo shoot.

During this time of the full moon, you are challenged to go deep within. Meditate. Reflect. Be in the stillness of the truth you hold that is not visible to those outside of your being. Observe within. How do you operate during these tentative times? There is much chaos and conflict in many aspects of the Earth at this time. Can you be honest in your appraisal of your intentions and motives?

Oh Shinnah Fastwolf, my native teacher, prodded me into moving toward my newer self years ago when she charged me with Shooting my arrow and following it! That was not a easy task. It meant being in my truth and living it honestly, but I shouldn’t do it mowing others down in order to fulfill my needs. That was not an easy task. Fulfilling our needs takes courage and honesty and also a sensitivity towards others in our lives.

During a time of Oh Shinnah’s teachings at her home in Colorado, a group of us were guided in meditation. I remember sharing afterward about a spiritual connection with beautiful deer that I was blessed with during the meditation. Shortly after that a woman shared her father’s experience of killing most of a herd of deer that were paralyzed in fear during his hunt and his regret later. I was horrified that she would share such a thing after I’d just spoken about the opening of my heart through the love of the deer.

originalbotanica.com

Openness, sensitivity, and sharing of love with others may come at a cost. But then again, it may not. The idea is to shoot your arrow and follow it and accept and work with the results of that action. Heed the true characteristics of the Hunter during this moon. They are of respect, of esteem for self and others, and a regard of nature and the tentative balance of the life on this planet.

Be true to yourself and to the Earth. Both the Moon and the Earth ask that you participate in the balance of each, in this relationship of life.

All is made beautiful,

Theresa ♥

Full Harvest Moon

The moon filled the expanse of the sky

She kissed us

This feminine energy

Of love everlasting

My dad drove us into East New York to order the capias that we’d pin to our clothing, for my infant daughter’s christening. It was a time that telephones were still attached to the wall,  advertisements were found in glossy magazines, and textbooks were the only requirements for college learning. I’d used a phone directory to guide me toward the mom and pop shop that would make the perfect party favors.

We sat in the front seat of the Malibu Classic and I held my baby girl in my arms. We turned a corner and there over two-story buildings hung the moon. Splendid. It could have been that my state of love changed my vision, but the moon was deep orange in the dark blue sky and she captivated me. I later found out she was the Harvest Moon.

Over the years, I’ve come to know the Harvest Moon as the one who shines her love infinitely.  She returns each autumn along with the manifestation of whatever  creativity we’ve engaged in for the year. We reap what we sow. That saying always seemed harsh to me. When I reflect on it though, I see that it usually aptly fits and in a positive manner.

I recently recounted to my spouse that I miss my Dad driving me around. He hasn’t driven in years. He gave that up in his sixties. Just like when he put his pack of cigarettes down and never picked up another one. When he made those types of decisions he stuck to them. He’ll be 88 years on September 23- a night close to the full harvest moon this year. He’s still at the assisted living facility. It’s a good place for him and for me. I visit with him and he plays a mean game of dominoes. Doing the math in his head, as he counts points, is the one thing Alzheimer’s hasn’t robbed him of yet. Each week, I take note of something else he’s left behind.

I miss my Dad and the car. When I was super small, he drove me around wherever he went. I was his companion. He often left me in the car when he went into a store. This would be against all of our rules today but then it was just the way we lived. On Saturday’s he’d park on the streets of Red Hook and tool around with his car for hours. I usually sat in the front seat with a new comic book. Archie. Betty and Veronica. Josie and the Pussy Cats. When I was a freshman at community college, he drove me early in the morning to the hospital where I was student nurse. Sometimes he’d pick me up and take me to Flushing Avenue where he’d choose LPs at the record shop. It wasn’t a stretch that I’d be sitting with him and my daughter in the car when I first spied the moon and the moon spied me. I miss those times.

Life has changed. My daughter lives out of state but we still share the love of the moon. We’ll probably chat on the phone this week. I’ll visit my Dad today and he’ll probably chuckle at my domino losses. We’ll take him out to lunch to celebrate his 88 years if he’s up to it. At night, my spouse and I will probably continue to chase the moon. It’s a tender time for which I am grateful.

I prayed that to the moon

XO

Theresa

Full Thunder Moon

cosmicpsychic.com

I, as everyone else, have been reading many articles and posts on Friday’s Full Thunder Blood Moon that is coming with a total eclipse of the heart. We expect lots of intense change and there are predictions of much negativity afoot. As I read, I remembered that at some point I had decided to be one on this planet who views the glass half full and then some. The opposite of total negativity is that we see the coming times in a most positive light and that this is an opportunity to embrace change. No matter what your sign, baby! Lovely, isn’t it?

There is talk of what’s been hidden coming to light and we all need to watch out. I look at this all in a different light. I see it under the soft light of Grandmother Moon. I often have the opportunity to feel empathy for the many I connect with who become paralyzed with the thought of working with their shadowed sides. The fear of the darkness within us is just that- fear. Most of us have already lived through great darkness and while we don’t want to recreate those painful times, we can allow them to merge with the light by engaging in healing practices.

The dark that merges with the light creates balance. The moon that I know is kind and gentle. She only wants what’s best for us. She comforts us and lights our paths in the darkness of the night. The moon doesn’t disappear when there is an eclipse. She is there and can still light our way in the dark if only we’d let her. The ways of mystery are often created in the dark. We may ask ourselves, what have I forgotten or have chosen to forget about myself? Have I forgotten that I am resilient and strong and on the beauty road? Have I forgotten how loved I am? Have I forgotten that magic is often made at night. The night belongs to the Feminine. It is the time of intuition, compassion, and healing.

In the Orisha Tradition, when we hear the sound of thunder, we call to the Orisha, Changó. Kabio Sile! We give thanks and listen for the sound of the drum that resonates with the beating of our hearts. We listen to the call to stand tall and be in charge of our lives knowing that the charge from thunder and lightning brings electricity and light to our lives. This time of year the paradoxical forces of the Full Thunder Moon will bring the intensity that is predicted, but it can be one of balance, if only we’d allow it.

I invite you to engage in a ritual during this powerful spiritual time. Going out on the earth is wonderful but focusing on the images in your kitchen, living room, or indoor sacred space works just as well. Stand on the Earth, dig your toes in. Call to Grandmother Moon and ask for what has been hidden to show itself not only in the dark of the night but in the light of the day. Know that you will receive only what you can handle for growth and transformation. Pray for balance. Give thanks for all you have and all you’ve learned in these times of chaos and strength building.  Remember that you are not alone and only one among many who dance under the night sky filled with billions of light points. Reach out to find yours and it will connect with you. Allow those filaments of light connect under the earth with like-minded people who also want to dance the dance of healing, love, and balance on this Earth at this time.

All is made beautiful.

XO

 

 

 

 

Grandma goes to CUNY

For one hot moment I returned to college. Forget about the fact that I have a PhD. A degree that had more to do with my writing than my nursing career but I’ve never given it much credit. Research and theory development? What could be better for a writer? Instead, I pined over the ever elusive MFA in creative writing. I applied for that degree a year ago in the CUNY system and was rejected. I was disappointed but since I believe the Goddess knows much more than I, I thought I let it go. I didn’t.

The pangs of I-must-be-missing-something continued to be strong. As an over fifty Latina there weren’t many opportunities for us to pursue art and writing degrees back in the day. Many of us stuck to school programs that would guarantee beef in our sopa de fideos. Our families dictated our choices. A few of us were able to pursue those creative degrees and I have no idea how.

I drew creatively as a child and the drawings helped me to make sense of lonely days without my sister by my side. Pencil and paper constructed the worlds I lived in after school. I believe my pictures were early attempts at storytelling. I had a friend in grammar school who pleaded with me to help her enter into her first choice of high schools. I did most of the illustrations for her application portfolio to Art & Design. It was meaningless to me until I met her years later and she told me that she designed baby clothes for a living. Then it mattered a bit more. I realized how out of touch with myself I’d been as a teen and felt the first pangs of regret.

To fill that longing I recently registered for an editorial processing course at CUNY. These  in-person classes took place for me after a nine hour work day. I thought I could overcome that. I decided to ignore my fear that the professor would call on Ashley… Jordan… and then me, Grandma. My grey hair was a beacon among the twenty year old blondes, candy apple reds, and brunettes.

I hesitated to share with my spouse the two episodes when the security officer asked to see my ID or some proof I belonged in those hallowed corridors. She loudly asked me whether I had an adjunct faculty badge and when I said no, asked if was I a professor. No, I am a student, I replied. Twice.

I shared my tale with my spouse, in spite of my ego. It turned out that during her recent return to CUNY for undergrad music courses her experience was worse. She’d been escorted out of the music room when she’d attempted to practice the piano by security officers who couldn’t believe she was a student. Twice.

I found I was exhausted in the morning without the pleasure of a real hangover. I didn’t have time to create in my mind the lovely stories that tend to bubble up there when I am calm. The informational sheets the professor handed out covered either something I already knew or my real-life-editor had discussed with me. I didn’t need to spend two and a half hours in class with two and a half hour commutes for validation or to revisit an old dream that had already been fulfilled.

I didn’t go back to class last night. I’m finally a college dropout and I’m proud of it. I ate dinner with my spouse, worked on my new novel outline, and chatted on the phone with my dear Uncle Louie. I woke up this morning refreshed.

I am a writer. An author. I’m growing my creative life as I hadn’t for years. It’s never too late for us. This growth is something that I’m now sharing with like minded individuals who have also woken up and said, it’s my turn. The kids are grown. The parents have been satisfied. We’ve survived and now we will flourish in creating those parts of ourselves that have been patiently waiting for us to reawaken.

What is your dream?

xoxo
Theresa

The Full Worm Moon

 

almanac.com

It’s hard to believe that we’re already gazing up at the last full moon before the vernal equinox. Spring is almost here again. There was no full moon in February but March will have two moons. The blue moon will shine its glory later in the month.

The Worm Moon is also known as the Crow Moon for the murders of crows often seen at this time of the year, as the Crust Moon for the changing soil, and the Sap Moon for the maple sap that oozes from the trees just as the worms slither out of the soil aerating it for a flourishing spring growth.

What a great time for reflection. The Lenten moon is another name for the traditionally called Worm Moon. The holidays are behind us. That school break that pops up between Christmas and Easter is done for many. It’s the perfect time for looking within and deciding what doesn’t serve us in our lives and what we might discard. That may be different for all of us. It might be time to be rid of the old and declutter that hall closet. It could be time to add healthy veggie or fruit smoothies into our diets. Meditation opens the gateway for your spirit guides to whisper your individualized plan meant especially for you.

The worms have been here for millennia. They go along churning the Earth in preparation for growth for our continued existence. I want to do the same. Maybe I won’t blindly spin my way though fertile soil but I will do my part. I gladly take part in toiling the Earth because she is the Mother, Gaia, and I want her to prosper abundantly. My relationship with the Earth tells me that she is grateful for my work as I am indebted to her.

How will you celebrate the Full Worm Moon? 

xxoo

Theresa

 

Corkboards and cash

The couple standing on line behind me at Whole Foods were annoyed with me. I could tell by their body language and the energy of disdain that seeped out at me. I can understand why. It’s because I was paying with cash. We’d just bought a cartful of groceries and I pulled out my old-fashioned purse with old fashioned greenbacks and began paying with them.

The cashier cheerfully chatted as she counted out the bills, returned my change, and gave me my receipt. I get it. I sometimes seethe at the deli counter when someone pays for their bagel and coffee with a credit card. I usually have a dollar in my pocket for my roll and often resent the time it takes for them to sign for their two-item purchase with a debit or charge card.

It may be passé to use cash but when I do I can forget about the purchase and not have to look at it again at the end of the month. Questioning myself as to the numbers of rolls and bagels I’ve eaten is not appealing.

I’ve just put up a cork board on the wall at my desk at home. There are colorful tacks to go with the pastel index cards I’ve placed on the corkboard. It’s taken me a while to accept that I function best the old-fashioned way. Using electronic calendars and to-do lists are okay but in the case of lists I like to know what I’ve accomplished. Call it silly, but I feel a certain joy when find one of my old index cards that show what I’ve done. The delete button erases all traces of my work unless it’s a novel.

My feeling of being busy is confirmed when I see that I made four phone calls for my Dad’s health insurance, worked on a poem, sent a gift to a loved one, and on and on. When it’s wiped out in cyberspace, the feeling of being overwhelmed is there but I need evidence that I’ve done something. Otherwise, I tend to forget. That’s just who I am.

I’m thrilled with my corkboard. It’s right next to my vision board. Everything I’d like to do is in front of me. I don’t have to open an app to find it. Index cards rock. Cash rocks. There’s something in the use of paper and pen that is solidifying to me. Knowing what works for me is especially soothing. I promise not to judge your debit card, if you won’t judge my cash. 

There’s a whole world of corkboard ideas out there. Hmm, I wonder about cash!

XO

Theresa

 

 

 

 

A Lunar Trifecta

new.nationalgeographic.com

A super moon happens only once in a blue moon. This time coinciding with a blood red moon. Coinciding with an eclipse. Like, really? What do I do? What’s important about this for me? I’ve read a few posts on social media about it.

The takeaway is that if you think last February or August along with their eclipses and other lunar influences undeniably impacted you,  that this one will too, in a different way. Whew! I don’t think that I could handle another last year.

I’m one of those people who doesn’t believe that when the countdown commences on Times Square and the ball drops that the New Year ushers in newness. I’m a One Day at a Time gal. But this year I secretly hoped that 2018 would bring in lightness that was hard to find during the previous year.

Last February’s eclipse shone the light on scary illness in my family. August cast the dim light on my family placing my Dad who has Alzheimer’s disease into an Assisted Living facility. We’ve shouldered our way through and have some balance. Sad but balanced.

This lunar trifecta almost elicited a bloodcurdling scream from me until I read the posts. I was glad to read that a wrapping up or resolution may be afoot. I’ve been ruffled and my feathers need settling. I’m hoping this will happen. It’s time. Breathe in. Breathe out.

My morning meditation reminded me that although sad things may happen, I can still be a happy person. It reminded me that I have a full and wonderful life. It also told me that in happiness is prosperity. Serenity is more about the state of mind than outside issues. Acceptance is the answer to all of my problems. Just for today.

XO

Theresa