The concept of a medicine bag has come up over and over the last few weeks – a bag of tricks holding things we can do or experience that soothe, comfort, and bring us joy. Things that remind us of how wonderful the world is, and how amazing we are just for being alive in this moment. Our “medicines” that we can turn to when things out there in reality are looking less than grand, and we could use some restoration. Healthy skills to reclaim peace, perspective, and well-being. One insightful friend describes them as chemistry shifters. Personal actions taken that support self-care, and balance simply by engaging in them. Another beautiful friend, who ironically has a real medicine bag, discussed her need to clean out both her real bag and her conceptional one as well. She added the idea of allowing your coping skills to evolve. A skill that previously worked as a restorative action before may now contribute to blocks, and stress, and that it is a good idea to revisit, and replenish your bag of tricks based on present needs, and goals.
What’s currently in my bag or what makes me smile or why I am glowing when I probably shouldn’t be…
1. Meditation – both traditional (at least 10 minutes of seated meditation – mandatory these days), non-traditional throughout the day – all day. I had a seizure a few weeks ago and really had no choice but to put into practice a daily seated meditation – two if I can swing it. Recovery from the seizure has been good but tentative, and cautious. My central nervous system took a huge hit, and it is going to take awhile to heal, and rebuild. Meditation is the best prescription. It’s so, so good, even when it’s tough, even when my brain is being held hostage by monkeys, which is often, it’s good.
2. Spending time with my little ones – especially playing games, building legos, playing outside, swimming, watching movies, and resting/snuggling. We really like playing cards and chess right now. We’ve always been big snugglers. Nothing sets my world in perspective and joy more than hanging with my boys. They are my greatest medicine, and I hope I am theirs as well. All I have to do is think of their smiles, and my chemistry shifts. Every time.
3. Knitting – my spider fingers weaving my worlds back together – beautifully, with skill, with grace, with knowing, connected deeply to my heart – I’m not sure I would have made it through the last few months without it – I’m so grateful it is in my life or I would have been super-screwed. Thanks Mom! Thanks Universe!
4. Drawing – my newest add to my bag. I love working on something so outside my skill set, and getting better at it daily. I love posting my progress. I even love posting the ones I know are complete crap – I’m usually giggling when I do this. For me, there is true freedom in this range of experience, and expression – crap to possibly approaching something not so crappy! Woot! Completely obsessed. Water coloring too. Obsessed. Just wait until I get my hands on some acrylics.
5. Writing - I’m writing often these days, both on here and at home. It’s giving me space and time to sort out so many complicated feelings and situations going on in my life. Something about the act of writing down the words that represent my feelings and thoughts, working through it, seeing it on paper – it’s like balm – it takes the sting out, helps me to see things more clearly, and settles my heart. Sometimes it is the only thing that helps, and every time something about the situation eases.
6. Candles/oils/glitter/spells - everything is better with candles, oils, glitter and spells – everything and always. Intention. Purpose. Ritual. Inviting light and love. Inviting transformation and grace. Connecting. Gentle. Breath. Glimmer. Peace. Conspiring with the Universe. Ahhhhhmazing.
7. Styling in the mornings – never underestimate the power of looking and feeling beautiful. Fresh make-up, meaningful, and beautiful jewelry, clothes that feel great, and are elegant and easy, a great bag, great shades…beauty is power, but it is also so, so, so much more than that if you know where it actually comes from and what to do with it. When it all connects from the inside to the outside, honestly, effortlessly, truthfully, there really is nothing like it, and it actually has nothing to do with appearance.
When I think of my medicine bag, this is the image I’m thinking of…this beautiful vintage clutch by Yves Saint Laurent…portable and sublime – everything magically miniaturized to fit neatly on the inside…think Hermione’s backpack in the Deathly Hallows…just a bit chicer…
Published on May 29, 2012 on The Bloom Studio blog.