Chop Wood, Carry Water

Posted by: vkwspirit / Category:

  Arrived at my Mother's house in Florida Thursday evening to a refrigerator/freezer full of mold and maggots. Needless to say, it was a most unpleasant welcoming! After 3 hours of cleaning and scrubbing, I went to the neighbors to check in with her. When no one answered the door, I made an assumptions she was back in the hospital and decided to call a few in the surrounding area the next day.
  She is an elderly lady who lives alone and has been estranged from her family for many years. She has two children still alive that have absolutely no contact with her. It has always been amazing to me how her children could simply not speak to her. Oh, she's a crusty old woman who is direct and speaks her truth. However, in the 25 years I have known her, I have discovered what a generous and caring heart is beneath that rough exterior.
  Everyone has wounds from past conflicts with family and/or friends. Anyone alive has had to deal with an individual or two who seem to have no compassion for others. And, most certainly, each of us have been hurt by the words or deeds of another human being.
  It is in the response we choose we either harden our heart, or allow ourselves to feel the disappointment, betrayal, or whatever words fits the experience and move through the emotions. 
  Yesterday I found my friend dead in her home. She had apparently been deceased for several days. It appears she simply fell asleep in her recliner and never woke up. That brings me some comfort. 
  It is not the passing from this life to another that pierced my heart, it was the thought that she died alone and undiscovered for several days. As strong of a woman as I am, the sight immediately pierced my heart. So, after calling 911, observing the "protocol" of the authorities, I went back to my Mother's house and began weeding. I pulled, cut, stacked, and cried. It was precisely what my friend who had done if she would have been put in that situation.
  What I know, is the Mayan teaching of, "Chop Wood, Carry Water," was what the indigenous people did to cope with such deep emotions. I am grateful to have learned that "technique" early in life, for it has carried me well. There is much to be said about allowing our physical body to exert itself on the behalf of the community and oneself. I am grateful for the way in which communities come together to help their neighbors when disasters and crisis come along; it is truly, Love in Action. I am grateful to the ancestors for leaving such teachings for us to use today and I am grateful for those that have kept the teachings "in action" so the next seven generations can benefit from such wisdom. It certainly helped my heart.


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