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Rosalie D. Heart

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Member Since: Sep, 2011

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Forgiveness and a Brown Recluse Spider
By Rosalie D. Heart
Saturday, October 08, 2011

Rated "G" by the Author.

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There are no accidents. Read how a brown recluse spider acted as a teacher for me.

 I was bitten by a brown recluse spider. It was serious. The previous week, a man had died from a similar bite. I did not see the spider. I didn’t even know I was bitten until my forearm swelled and turned red. The hard, round red spot on my left upper arm ached. I labeled myself a whiny wimp and continued to participate in my belly dancing class in the morning and my interfaith ministry class in Santa Fe.

            When I could no longer move my left arm, I consulted a doctor. He shook his head gravely and said there was no cure. The only thing he recommended was a homeopathic remedy made up of the venom of killer bees.

            As I prepared to leave, he almost whispered that he knew a “curandera,” a local Hispanic medicine woman who lived close to me. He called her and drove me to her house. My fever was high and I wondered if I could be hallucinating.

            The elderly woman, who spoke no English, helped me undress and pointed to a bed in front of a hot wood stove. She pulled out an ancient looking rattle from her travel bag and returned to the stove to brew some herbs that would take the fire out of my fever.

She spoke to me in Spanish, and I understood a few words. The doctor translated, “I will stay awake at the bottom of this bed until you are ready to come back from the center of the universe. I will rattle and sing your spirit to remind you of here.”

            For hours I traveled in and out, hot and cold, moaning and crying. I traversed the spaces between living and dying, choosing neither. I wondered if this was karmic, to be part of nothing. Three days passed. Always I was aware of the rattling song. As I watched my life before me, I could not say, “Well done” about three incidents in my life story. I cried as I felt both the pain I had caused and the pain I had endured by refusing to forgive. My heart beat fast and I could feel it wanting to open more. I cried, wishing I could return and have a second chance to let go of my pride and surrender by forgiving and being forgiven. Suddenly I realized I could return and heal those relationships. The choice was mine, and I was determined to return and master forgiveness.I was bitten by a brown recluse spider. It was serious. The previous week, a man had died from a similar bite. I did not see the spider. I didn’t even know I was bitten until my forearm swelled and turned red. The hard, round red spot on my left upper arm ached. I labeled myself a whiny wimp and continued to participate in my belly dancing class in the morning and my interfaith ministry class in Santa Fe.

            When I could no longer move my left arm, I consulted a doctor. He shook his head gravely and said there was no cure. The only thing he recommended was a homeopathic remedy made up of the venom of killer bees.

            As I prepared to leave, he almost whispered that he knew a “curandera,” a local Hispanic medicine woman who lived close to me. He called her and drove me to her house. My fever was high and I wondered if I could be hallucinating.

            The elderly woman, who spoke no English, helped me undress and pointed to a bed in front of a hot wood stove. She pulled out an ancient looking rattle from her travel bag and returned to the stove to brew some herbs that would take the fire out of my fever.

She spoke to me in Spanish, and I understood a few words. The doctor translated, “I will stay awake at the bottom of this bed until you are ready to come back from the center of the universe. I will rattle and sing your spirit to remind you of here.”

            For hours I traveled in and out, hot and cold, moaning and crying. I traversed the spaces between living and dying, choosing neither. I wondered if this was karmic, to be part of nothing. Three days passed. Always I was aware of the rattling song. As I watched my life before me, I could not say, “Well done” about three incidents in my life story. I cried as I felt both the pain I had caused and the pain I had endured by refusing to forgive. My heart beat fast and I could feel it wanting to open more. I cried, wishing I could return and have a second chance to let go of my pride and surrender by forgiving and being forgiven. Suddenly I realized I could return and heal those relationships. The choice was mine, and I was determined to return and master forgiveness.

Excerpted from Awaken by Rosalie Deer Heart 

 

 

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