I’ve been ruminating about this post since Azahar first brought the topic up in mid February. I’ve been holding off writing it becuase I really didn’t want to freak y’all out. (Isn’t that nice of me?)
In 2009 I finally completed writing my Last Will & Testament. (Good timing, huh?) It took five years, which is an absurdly long time for me. It took that long because I couldn’t think of a solution to how to pass along the intellectual property in my life. Not just the books, the articles, the essays and other writings, but also Facing North and — most importantly — JaguarMoon. You see, I created that Tradition.
Who would inherit it? Who would see it kept intact while still remaining viable? The text is already in the hands of my HP and the HPS and Elders of the daughter coven, Southern Cross, so I am not afraid of it being lost. I’m afraid of it being imperfectly preserved and its history lost. How would I write this up in a way that would allow the Law and the State to let it happen without penalty or misunderstanding.
Neil Gaiman, of all people, came to my rescue with his post about creative people creating a will for themselves. I downloaded the Simple Will and modified it for my use.
I made my partner, J., the executor. I gave my ritual paraphernalia and occult library to my HP as well as ownership of the legacy of JaguarMoon. I made my sister (the Intellectual Property lawyer), J. my HP and one other member of JaguarMoon Trustees of my creative properties. Together they will decide how to publish, re-publish, and make available my work for the greatest good.
I expect the names to change over the years (except my sister and J.), and my specific bequests may alter with time. In the moment, however, my creative life is preserved, and will be available to the community online for a long time to come.
It’s been 3 1/2 weeks since the last chemo session, and it’s been a hard recovery time for me. I’ve been physically exhausted, compounded by not sleeping well or through the night. My spirits have been good, my attitude generally positive, but the lack of physical fitness has been disturbing.
Having to work last week was an unexpected setback.
Mostly, I haven’t even been able to walk as long as 15 minutes. Until a day or two ago, I couldn’t even go 5 minutes without feeling wobbly — like I’d run a marathon. Going up and down stairs too many times would produce the same feeling of exhaustion in my leg muscles, complete with pounding heart.
I am the heaviest weight of my life, all because I can’t move more than briefly without wanting to fall over. It’s been a terrible time, and a terrible feeling.
Now, I’m not one to give in to adversity (a blessing and a curse, of course), so I’ve been trying to get out with J at least for the evening Sasha walk. By slowly pushing it, I could make it as far as 10 minutes.
Today, however, I took Sasha for a 15 min walk all by myself. (It was even raining.) Although I feel tired, I do not feel exhausted. This is a huge step forward. HUGE.
And yes, I realize its a screwed up life when you need to celebrate walking for 15 mins.
What a difference modern medicine makes.
J. woke up this morning to find Sasha standing by the side of the bed, panting and wobbly again. Clearly the drugs wore off. We gave her another dose and offered water, she turned her nose up at it.
J. had to take the car for service (inspection due), so he left her with me. After about an hour of lying quietly, she indicated she wanted to go out. Once I carried her outside, she just stood there, then lay down in the grass. (Note, she hadn’t done her ‘business’ in about 16hours.) After a few minutes I carried her inside again. We did this in and out thing three times, and my back was starting to hurt. So I got a long towel, folded it twice and slung it under her chest. Lifting it and pulling forward, she walked.
Apparently she needed to know she wouldn’t hurt if she moved, because then she ran to the side of the house and up to the front door, then around to the back door — where J. had just come home (via the front door). She was all bouncy and happy and like her usual self. Then she did business (!!!)
When the meds wear off, she is in pain, but we’ve got a good cycle going and the vet feels that a week will allow the pulled muscle to heal.
So, we have puppy care, but its no longer so desperate. Thank goodness!!!!!
Tonight when Sasha came home from her usual swim she started exhibiting signs of extreme pain. We’ve seen swimmer’s tail’ from her before, and stress fractures — this was something else.
She would sit (which she won’t do with swimmer’s tail) but not lie down. She wasn’t limping, she just refused to move at all, and her stance was very odd, like she was braced. She was so tired she was wobbly, but wouldn’t lie down. She ate, but didn’t pursue her bowl when she nudged it out of her immediate range.
Our vet has partnered with a group called Acces for after-hours care; we went there. After a careful survey, visual and kinesthetic, the vet tentatively diagnosed Sasha as suffering from a muscle injury, likely in the neck. Like a pulled muscle from fatigue. But a really bad one. They gave her a muscle relaxant and hydromorphine (aka Dilaudid!) and we all just hung out for awhile to see how she handled it. It definitely relaxed her, but the stress of the unfamiliar place was starting to freak her out a bit.
So we brought her home. J has her in the guest room downstairs. It took her about 45 mins once she was home to calm down, but she’s completely unconscious and sleeping on her side. Our only worry now is that she hasn’t had anything to drink for a lot of hours. She had wet food for dinner, so that will help any dehydration, but it’s something we need to pay attention to.
It was a very scary time.
. . . if my house caught fire.
- J. Of course he’s number 1.
- My most recent computer backup. I backup monthly and it fits on a couple of disks, so this is easy.
- My jewelry – not because of its value so much as because several pieces are family heirlooms.
- My stone jaguar. Representing JaguarMoon and the first gift to me as a priestess . . . long after I began walking the path, but long before I began to lead others.
- My handmade athame. This was made for me by a special friend, and cannot be replaced.
That’s it. It will even fit easily into a pillow case.
Everything else in my life is basically replaceable, or too cumbersome to save. In the latter category, I have three tubs of memories going back to my childhood. I also have about 30 pieces of Belleek that is essentially irreplaceable. If I had time, I’d save them because the loss of those things is major. But I’d rather save my dog.
I planned to have this week as another recuperative week . . . and really, honestly, I should have kept to that.
But an email exchange on Sunday night at 9pm prompted me to get into the office, and I’ve been work 3/4 days since then. Evenings have been new-house focused (Mon we looked at ‘upgrades’, Tues and tonight are the last of the Realtor interviews). So these have been long days.
I give so much at work, I have no energy for anything else. Not good. Physically, this is taking its toll. I am barely able to muster the energy to walk the Miss at night, and certainly not 2x/day . . . as I’d hoped I would this week.
That’s all I have for now. I’m looking forward to more energy later.
So I shared my dream the other night, and mentioned the personal symbology and lexicon that makes most dreams utterly irrelevant . . . .
Last night’s dream had me in the snow in New York City (an Art Deco version of it) putting on loads of makeup in a high-end store.
I promise I won’t often share dreams with you. Partly because dreams tend to be harder to describe than it seems when you begin, but also because the lexicon of symbology is intensely personal and intimate.
Last night I dreamed of a catastrophe that wiped out much of the area our clan lived in. This was not a horrible experience, we just went on with the rebuilding. Somehow, I became the person who had managed to keep the icons safe — I ended up working with the shaman-priest/esses and doling out the many (MANY) horned god, star goddess, goddess, and god images I had saved. Oh, and the 50+ tarot decks.
Wheel of Change Deck: High Priestess
I only share this because it’s the first overtly magickal dream I’ve had in a while, and I find the significance of it occurring only days after my final chemo significant.
My black Lab, Sasha playing in the snow.