Cellular Memory of Sorts

11 Aug

It’s rainy here. Rainy. Grey. Cooler than expected for August. And a cellular memory is stirring. The memory that speaks of winter…winter and cold and the need to be prepared. To have wood “put up.” And food. To have food canned and set aside on pantry shelves. Or placed in a cool earthen cellar with potatoes and squash. And even though I’m not exactly doing these things–there’s still a message woven into my DNA that lets me know it’s that time again. I understand the feeling. And when I’m quiet enough, mental images surface. Images/scenes/scents from another time. Another place. And perhaps even–from other lives. These are the flip side of feelings that surface in early spring when surfacing and the need to go to ground manifest in a different way–in a more expansive way. Up and out rather than hunkering down.

This cloth, I understand it now. The gathering of…. The preparation for…. Getting ready….

For the next week I am tending boy. Sharing the joy of it with his grandpa. Alternating days that involve many things. Many things. It’s amazing to me how much I’ve forgotten about how much is involved in shepherding children. The basic logistics of feeding. Of having food available. Of meal preparation. Laundry. And then watching from afar and waiting for the return. It’s a LOT. And then the other thing…the listening to…to words…actions…expressions…the unspoken. Listening. And honoring space. His. Mine. Ours. My heart is full right now simply because I am seeing him for who he is rather than who I imagined him to be. There’s a difference.

Yesterday we dried wet laundry in a laundromat. Broken dryer at home. And we met some very interesting people. Men tending laundry. Household laundry. Washing sheets and towels and family clothing. They loved seeing boy there. And one man in particular shared stories of doing laundry with his grandma. Shared all sorts of stories in fact. And said as we were leaving, “Boy, you’ll remember this–you’ll remember helping your grandma fold clothes–and it will be a tender memory.”

A tender memory. And as we were leaving, I wondered why that comment move me so deeply. Was it his own sharing of memories?–memories helping his own grandma fold laundry many years ago. Was it this commonality of similar tasks that thread through generations. Was it because when I first saw him, I was not inclined to get to know him? There. That is true–because I had made certain assumption about him. About just staying far enough away that eye contact wasn’t going to happen. And then before I knew it, everything I had thought-without-thinking–all of my unconscious conditioned assumptions–vanished with the connection. The spark. The seeing…the recognition. The awakening inside on some cellular level. I’ve been wondering if he’ll be there next weekend. If we go back, will he tell us more? I’m just wondering about it all….

And something about this image–rain drops on a spider’s web–an image that we looked at closely, yesterday. Looked for a long time. Looked for the weaver. Marveled at the rain drops and the beauty of it all. That it speaks so deeply to me about everything I’ve tried to express here…. Still wondering.IMG_07991

10 Responses to “Cellular Memory of Sorts”

  1. beth August 11, 2014 at 11:01 am #

    Such a tender post Patricia. It’s given me a lot to wonder about as well. I know this fall stirring as well. Haven’t felt it yet, but soon… Enjoy your precious end of summer boy time.


  2. Patricia August 11, 2014 at 11:37 am #

    hi Beth. i always appreciate hearing from you. and if you ever feel like it, i’d love to know what this post brought up for you–in the “wonder” department. i’m thinking about how it seems, that each of us have lives so full of things to wonder about! seems endless.


    • beth August 11, 2014 at 1:05 pm #

      I’m kind of a stream of consciousness thinker and am having particular difficulty with words lately, but… Wondering/thinking… DNA. Race memory. Cellular and/or past life memory. How it isn’t so important for most of us to prepare for winter with our 21st century American lifestyles. But that tension of the memory of need is still there. Our fellow creatures certainly feel it. Maybe we pick up on it from them to some degree.

      But I am also thinking about your encounter in the laundromat. I am so sensitive to the energy of other people. So I do a lot of shielding. And there is the stuff we learn as women. To not give the wrong message. To not attract unwanted male attention. But then there is also basic kindness and compassion. So I am usually walking that line between get the f__ away from me and are you okay?/can I help you? I used to work at a public library (20+ years ago.) Because I connected with people in brief controlled encounters, there was that desk between us, and they were in my workplace space–it was easier to be kind. Some people really, really needed that. I could feel it–that hunger/that need for connection. But now without that role, without that clear division of space, I don’t connect in that way very often. So, opening to the spark, the recognition. Taking the time for it. It is very hard for me, but I think need to say yes to that more often.


  3. Patricia August 11, 2014 at 1:39 pm #

    dear Beth–thank you for expressing this wonderful insight. the depth of what you feel and have experienced, moves me beyond words. it’s really amazing, isn’t it? how life sometimes seems to be a continuum of taking things on and then casting them off when they’ve worn out their usefulness. i think some of my unconscious behaviors are like that–i wear them around until i notice how threadbare and ineffective they’ve become. and really, i’m hoping i’ll live long enough to really completely clean house. i love you for your openness here. xo


  4. fiberels August 11, 2014 at 5:04 pm #

    Thank you 😉 for this wonderful post !

    (something to think about … for us all …)


  5. karmadondruplhamo August 11, 2014 at 8:49 pm #

    i love all this so much. and how it ends with all those drops of water…like we are, Right?
    like that.
    and the rest…the sense to hunker down. Even in the midst of August days that are Fecund. a sense of it.
    to care for the children.
    and this Cloth Being…like one of the amazing glorious Corns of many colors…it is a Dancer of the Harvest and although that day is in the distance now, within the Kernals of the corn, the knowing of it is stored. Like within you, the knowing of it is stored.
    I think of Laundromats like Church. We go there because we need to and we sit among many. and we just need to sit there. watching the whirl of the machines. All the comotion of those who sit with us watching. I love laundromats. I think it would be GOOD if laundromats could be also designated as places of worship, worship of Clean Cloths which Everyone Likes. No matter who we are. We like clean stuff. or why else would we be there? I love this post, Patricia. A lot. i will keep thinking it and maybe have something else to say…..but i just love it a lot.


  6. Patricia August 12, 2014 at 6:21 am #

    my keyboard is making me nuts. spasm-ing. speaking with a mind of its own. 3rd try here to respond. maybe it has its own editing opinion? but essentially, besides loving the comparison to glass gem corn, i think the notion that laundromats are like churches is
    BRILLIANT. sufi-ish. cleansing without guilt and all of that. shared commonality…recognition of sameness. and cycles. rebirth. oh…now i’m the one who will be thinking about this…for a good long while i imagine.


  7. handstories August 13, 2014 at 7:11 pm #

    This is such lovely noticing…


  8. deemallon August 27, 2014 at 5:11 pm #

    “My heart is full right now simply because I am seeing him for who he is rather than who I imagined him to be. There’s a difference.” — there is nothing simple about seeing someone as they are, rather than who we want them to be… I think I enjoy your descriptions of insight and consciousness every bit as much as I enjoy seeing what you create with your hands.

    harvest, the spells of seasons, the rhythm of the sky — how do we lose this so thoroughly? you are right to notice how the need and the response live on in our cells.


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