Faith

I was prematurely proud of my faith

Easy in, easy out

I had a holier-than-thou attitude toward the unwoke heathens in my elementary school class

I was the social outcast, but I had friends in high places

God was like the strong older brother I wish I had had to protect and defend me

I didn’t want to share, I was too shy to speak anyway

Nobody knew it, but I read the bible every day when I was a child

Then puberty’s rain of blood, sweat and tears awoke in me old trauma, cracked me to the core

It occurred to me that being molested by my mother had not been OK, and any decent god would not have allowed such a horror to happen

These are the makings of a whore

Pretty girl + poverty + pushover + early childhood abuse

The perfect storm brewed within me

I cut myself off from God and for the longest time I was a drifter

An urban sifter

I did not fare well on my own

Without realizing it, I invited one trauma after another into my life

I clung to education as my lifeline out of poverty

Slowly, I am clawing my way out

Eventually, my education led me to my husband, who brought Jesus back into my life

I know now that God never cut Himself off from me

I understand what they say about mysterious ways

Prayer and Faith

I have relearned to pray

When I don’t know what to do, I pray

When I’m grateful, I pray

When I’m scared, I pray

All day, I pray

Waking from a nightmare, I pray

I pray that you may be at peace

I pray that I may be at peace

I pray to loosen my own reins

Let God take the wheel

I’m too weary to drive anymore

I close my eyes, take a breath, hold fast to faith

Faith that I don’t need to control the uncontrollable

Faith that I don’t know the whole picture

Faith that I will continue to have a beautiful life

Faith that I am safe and loved

Bless This Suffering

Bless everything in your life

Bless every present moment

Every present moment is the most important in our lives

That is the secret for happiness

It is easy, if we remember it

Everything that happened to me I attracted, either consciously or unconsciously.

I own it, take responsibility

I transform my pain and suffering into love.

When I focus on love, crippling fear melts away

The universe wishes for our comfort

Feel how the Earth rises up to hold us, how the sky fills our lungs

Witness how all of creation collaborates to give us life

We don’t have to kill ourselves to survive, I had it backwards this whole time

Experience it for yourself: increase your faith, decrease your fear

Watch your happiness blossom open

To have it, you have to give it away

Bless the difficulty, discomfort and pain, and also the joy and bliss

Embrace your feelings

I bless this moment

I bless this suffering

Even when attacked by prickly people, the air I breathe stays peaceful, calm, and smooth

When shots are fired at my ego I feel the wound in my heart

I fight back tears, the dam of my eyes is filled to breaking

I used to try to heal before others noticed that I was hurt

I am learning to embrace my pain, hold it close to my heart, thank it for protecting me

The human experience is about gratitude and love

We must learn how to love the unpleasant moments, and own them

What we resist persists

We don’t have to struggle uphill all the time

We can let faith carry us

This was a significant revelation

I bow in humble gratitude to my angels

Corona

I wear my crown of martyrdom

On the front lines, yet still at the back of the testing line- haven’t been tested

I think of you, virus, though you do not think of me

Coronavirus, on the news
Coronavirus, in my body
Is the aching in my muscles and bones your calling card?
You desire to enter my cells, virus, as much as I long to keep you out
Together, yet separately, we hunger
You want to pick my lock, use my typewriter to transcribe your RNA, then mail your enveloped self-promoting propaganda air mail special to Hadestown.
Don’t bring me down on the way, I pray
Not like this, not today
My heart breaks to think of those who have lost their lives to you, and those who needlessly will still
My head is intoxicated with fear
You always seem too near
Perhaps we Americans deserve the repercussions of our recklessness
Though it is the innocent who pay, as usual
Another day deep
I march on with trembling hands and heavy feet
Tracking invisible mud out of the wards and onto the street
Ashamed to stay in the job I was fixing to quit anyway,
Ashamed to leave now and abandon my post
The war is on, dwarfing the existential crisis of living the life I want versus fulfilling my societal obligation
I am among the minority who have a medical education
Only in following my heart can I grow up at last, no longer a slave to the judgements of others who do not bear my burden
My mind’s liberation opens up like a blue sky
Back to here and now, overcast again
In clinic and in the hospital
I struggle to bring my heart into the mundane and mission-impossible tasks which overflow from one day to the next
Virus, I gaze at your storm clouds accumulating on the horizon, and feel small
I see your silver lining, as I am well practiced in finding positivity amidst disaster
You are rich in potential
Look at the way you are uniting humanity, virus
People are taking care of themselves and each other like never before
Practicing presence in hospital hallways and supermarket aisles, smiling shyly at each other from behind our suffocating masks
We are finally being mindful of our precious resources, thinking globally and acting locally for sustainable solutions
We are cultivating more community and camaraderie than we could ever quantify
Teamwork and solidarity are weaving our spirits more closely together even as the physical distance between our bodies grows
I take a step back to take in the beauty of the tapestry you wove, virus
You bring opportunity for innovation and flexibility, you demand it
Many of us no longer take life for granted
We are cleaning our hands as often as we always should have
People are being prioritized over profits as we focus on what is essential
We settle in, acknowledging at last that we are in the same boat
Living in unspoken gratitude for each day of health
Please don’t rock my boat too much, virus
Though you are armed with cunning skills
And you may bring about more positive change still
I plan to ride out this storm, though land is not in sight
Virus, perhaps you could rest tonight?
Virus, my type II pneumocytes are mine, my lungs are a celebration of life and you are not invited
I wind-down after another day on the front lines,
I give thanks to those who are doing their part in time
To those in the comfort of your own homes,
Please stay where you are, be satisfied
Coronavirus, we will destroy you with patience and ingenuity, with solidarity and community, with soap and water, and with love for one another

Earth Mama

Earth Mama

You always held me

I never left your embrace

You always loved me

Everywhere I look I see your face

I lost touch for a while

My heart broke and cracked open

Your heart kept right on beating

Slow and steady

You kept on supporting me and nourishing me

Even when I felt like I was falling and famished

You filled the cracks in my heart

With golden light

Making my heart even more beautiful than before it broke

Earth Mama, thank you for your generosity

Thank you for this life

Thank you for your love

Thank you for your patience

Thank you for believing in me

When I didn’t believe in anything

Beyond belief,

I know what I have lived

Now I know how to love