Horus asked me to cut his hair, and I did so, just minutes after this photograph was taken. After-pics coming up!
(Above: Treva, finishing her pottery for the firing).
Well. I have been meaning to post for a while, and I wanted to write a little bit about Hallowe’en: How much I love it, and its Pagan associations, and how special it was for me as a kid: the mystery and the merry-making and the happy excited energy from my parents who both dressed up and went wild in the most delicious and delightful ways. But the past couple of days have been taken up with preparing for our most recent woodfiring, and also, alas, with a bit of a health scare.
I have never taken my children to see a doctor–ever–and we have been lucky enough not to have experienced any calamity necessitating a visit to the hospital.
But, (and this may come as a surprise to some) I’m not nuts (!), and like all parents, I do my best to keep my kids healthy and safe–despite the inherent risks of being alive.
So when I discovered that a black-legged tick had been feasting on 2 year old Treva for several days (I thought it was a little dreadlock that had developed at the back of her head. It took me a while to get the kids and the scissors in the same room. Yes, I feel guilt about being so slovenly. Especially as I had been checking them for ticks daily during the summer…Anyway) I kind of freaked out.
Then I read everything I could possibly find about Lyme disease. And it turns out, Lyme is quite prevalent in our area. It also turns out that most mainstream doctors don’t know very much about Lyme, and that there is quite a discrepancy between how conventional medicine reads the risk vs. governing bodies, vs. those who suffer from the disease. And, Lyme is often debilitating, painful and very destructive. Scary stuff.
So when I drove Tree and Felix to the hospital emergency in Fredericton at 11pm, and then waited for 6 hours to be seen, only to be told by the shockingly dismissive and arrogant doctor on call that I was being paranoid, and that Lyme disease isn’t even an issue in New Brunswick, and that no one has even been diagnosed with the condition, and that it always presents with a bullseye rash, etc. (along with other pieces of misinformation), I was, understandably I think, frustrated.
But I have to admit feeling a little bit righteous. The only time (the ONLY time!!!) I feel that accessing the Canadian medical system (for which I pay!) is an appropriate course of action, and I am turned away, and essentially denied service. Well, I guess I was right all along. Nothing doing. Not my scene. These are not my people.
Back home, to my spells and potions.
I’m being facetious, of course. I did attempt to argue with the emergency doctor, and even insisted that he prescribe for Treva the antibiotic that is usually suggested as a prophylactic in the case of potential Lyme infection. Doxycycline, however, is contraindicated for children, and while I think the physician was slightly surprised and perhaps taken aback by being confronted with a woman who was clearly informed and intelligent and willing to speak her mind (ahem–I was polite, I promise), and while he DID in the end give me a prescription, he also explained that Doxy can be responsible for damage to a child’s tooth enamel, and can negatively effect their skeletal development and he advised me not to fill the prescription. I suppose, in retrospect, I am appreciative of the fact that he capitulated and allowed me to make the decision, as Treva’s mother, and I suppose that this, in a way, showed a certain level of respect towards me (albeit grudging). And in the end, after reading up (extensively) on the potential side effects of the antibiotic, I decided against it. So…
Back home, to my spells and potions.
To be specific, Cat’s Claw is a herb that many feel has a very potent effect countering Lyme, and possibly preventing it. And of course, I am doing everything I can to boost Treva’s immune system–probiotics, berries, dha, coconut, herbs, the gamut.
But also, and perhaps most importantly, I have decided that she doesn’t have Lyme disease. And here’s the thing: I believe profoundly in the power of the placebo effect, and in the power that we have, as parents, over the way our children see themselves, and the way they vision the future. (And I find it supremely fascinating that the idea of the brain and the mind being separate and different is being studied scientifically by learned individuals who feel that this idea actually has hefty credence…). And I believe strongly that all dis-ease is an expression of psychic and emotional imbalance, and when I sat still for a moment and checked into my True Heart with a focus on my perfect daughter Treva Sweetgrass…everything was clear. This is not to say any of us are safe. Or that I have any special powers. But I think to a great degree, in order to stay sane as mothers and parents of these children whom we love…it is necessary to believe in magic, and to believe in the real magic of positivity and calmness.
So there we are.
Also, it is a good practice to be comfortable with chaos and uncertainty. Parenting is just an ongoing busting of the ego, and of attachment.
And gosh, for me, Hallowe’en is not only wonderful good spooky fun, but also a powerful lesson in non-attachment. Just a couple of hours ago, I had to watch my 4-year old boy being handed a can of cola, and then crack it open and guzzle it in the space of 3 minutes. There goes innocence, washed down with a chaser of C-plus. I wanted so badly to rip it out of his hand, I really did. Nevermind. We had a great night. We connected with so many lovely neighbours–older people who basked in the glow of the little ones’ delight. “What’s this?!?!” Horus and Treva asked. “Well.” I said. “People call that licorice.” They learned lots of names for junk food, and I just smiled and had a good time. Wow. I’ve come a long way. And tomorrow? Back to normal. Just one night of anarchy. I can take it.