An Unexpected Healing

DSCN2833 honeybee healingI was sitting outside on a chaise lounge reading when my eye was caught by movement in the dry grass to my left. A honeybee was scrambling frantically, unable to fly, but running, moving as fast as it possibly could. As I tuned in I got a sense of searing pain throughout the entire body that it was attempting to outrun. Pesticide is what came to mind.

I didn’t have my Healing Handbook * handy, but intention is key in any healing. I realized that I was caught up in the bee’s panic, so had to breathe, go into my heart space, and find peace so that I could offer healing. I started with Reiki.

The bee went from scrambling in a straight line to going more in circles near where I was holding my hands out to offer Reiki.

I then offered a process with the intention of healing the entire body and removing any toxins. The words may have been less than perfect, but the intent was pure; offer whatever healing the bee can accept to bring it into alignment with the plan that it and the Creator had agreed upon.

The bee stilled before I was finished speaking. I sent love and gratitude for the healing and went back to my book.

When I went back to check on the bee about 20 minutes later, she was dead. A perfect reminder that healing does not always mean repair of the physical body; it can take on various forms. Better dead than frantically trying to escape unbearable pain.

And how interesting that just a short time before, I was working on healing some old emotional pain in my own life; rewriting the story, forgiving myself, changing the past. Letting it go.

A friend once told me that pain is pain is pain. It doesn’t matter where it comes from, nor does it matter whether it is physical, emotional or mental. It is all the same; it is all an opportunity for growth.

As I offered healing to Bee, I offered that same healing myself – we are all one, after all.

The last thought I received from her was this quip:
~~~ Making the world a better place, one bug at a time ~~~

I like that.

Blessings to Honey Bee for our healing.





*The Healing Handbook offers a wonderful self-study method for learning to heal yourself, and everything around you. Anyone can use it. You can check out part of the content on Amazon.


Buzz from the Bees – It’s All About Me

DSCN2802 bees at ftn closeup 5I was visiting Alden Lane Nursery, wandering around outside admiring the plants and statuary when I saw a few honey bees gathered around a fountain. The longer I looked, the more bees I saw.
Many were on a fountain with a lily pad shaped platform. The lily pad was curved, with water running over the lower sections. Bees were on the edges of where the water flows, drinking; many of them.

DSCN2802I asked them if they had a message for me.

The immediate response: Nourish yourself.

It is hot and dry here in the East Bay Area of California. The bees are busy – many flowering plants are available here in this small, well-tended haven. But each bee must care for itself first in order to contribute – in this instance, by staying hydrated.

I see individuals on other fountains – one hovers and drinks water cascading over the edge of a fountain, one is using the top of a spider’s web for balance as it drinks water cascading down the side of a large, blue jug-shaped fountain.
Another favorite gathering place: a more classic fountain with a central pedestal where the water cascades down to drip into a basin below. Again, the bees congregate either where the water is very shallow or at the edge of the water’s flow. Each knowing care for self allows the hive to thrive.

Creating honey reserves for the winter together, but utilizing the energy of the sun for as long as it lasts; soaking up the rays, living fully in community.

DSCN2802 bees at ftn closeup 2Interesting that it’s flowing water they prefer over the pools of water.

At the lily pad fountain, they are well shaded. A lone yellow jacket joins in to take a drink as well.

The message persists : Nourish yourself.

This is not exactly my strong suit – not something I learned as a child. My parents did not model self-care, and I was told what to do, not asked; presented with decisions made without my input.  My opinion was rarely sought, and the question of what I might desire was seldom asked.

So as an adult, I have, like my parents, focused outside myself, concentrating on what others want. But the signs point increasingly to the need to focus within; to be fully in my own body, in my own heart, and asking myself what it is that I really want, in every facet of my life.

That is nourishing myself: investing in my own happiness; beautifying my own surroundings; going into my own heart and providing the love, encouragement , patience and compassion that I need to come home to myself and find my source of joy, my source of power and my path to a fulfilled life.
It’s time to find my own answers.

And all of this just from asking a simple question of the bees, “Do you have a message for me?”
And listening for – expecting – an answer.

Doing this is not rocket science; it is Heart Science, and anyone can do it. It is in honoring the Honey Bee as teacher that this is possible, and in asking for and receiving the answer from the heart, not the head. The rest flows in as well – how does it apply to my life? Perhaps I can go deeper and ask more questions – today there was no need.

Much gratitude to my wise teachers, the Honey Bees. I have my work cut out for me.

DSCN2802 bees at ftn closeup 7

Crickets Call to Action




It’s 9 a.m. and the crickets are incessant. Their song is not as relaxed as I remember it in years past – and it has started earlier – much earlier. It started in July.

Summers here in Northern Virginia have a rhythm to them.

Fireflies June to August.
Cicadas starting in July and petering out in early September.

Crickets ushering in the Autumn. You hear their gentle song in the evening.

Not this year.

The fireflies came out in May, and I haven’t seen any for many weeks now – they are usually putting on their best show right now.

I heard the first Cicada in mid June although the full chorus didn’t start until July. Even so, it is not as loud and raucous as in years past.

But the crickets – ah, the crickets. Our harbingers of Fall came out in full force before Summer had even fully arrived. Yes, they are always present, our wonderful brown and black cleanup crew, but usually individual voices until they join together in mid to late August for the evening choir.

Not this year. This year they have been calling out since June. Louder in July. Now in early August they are incessant both morning and evening, and even throughout the day. Sounding almost frantic, like a kitchen timer in overdrive.

This summer has been different anyway. Milder; less intense heat and fairly wet until the last few weeks, but energetically as well – something that feels like the calm before the storm. And the crickets sound urgent.

The energies are changing.

They know this.

We need to pay attention.

Cave cricket“You can hear a lot more when you’re listening than when you’re talking”
~ Leon Shenandoah


We’re in the midst of the Lion’s gate .

We’re headed for a chaotic node .

The Earth, our Mother, who provides everything for us, has been deeply wounded and it is her time to heal.

How can I be of service at this time?

The crickets know what their role is as does every plant and animal attuned to Earth’s rhythms.

It is time for humanity to listen as well.Cricket2


“Don’t look for God in the sky; look within your own body.”
                                       ~ Osho

 It is time for each of us to connect to the Source, or God Being within and listen. Find out what our purpose is. Then act from that deep space of knowing, love and authenticity.

Just as the crickets are already doing.

The crickets are calling us to action. Are you listening?

Golden Girl Wisdom

It’s Spring and the Golden Girls are out in force. I’m referring, of course,DSCN1869 L.venusta crop2
to L. venusta;  tiny orb-weavers who look like dots of bright sunlight if you catch them at the right angle. Unlike their larger cousins, the Garden Spider, these ladies weave their webs more horizontally than vertically, making it at times difficult to navigate my small garden. Last year I even had one enthusiastic inhabitant build a web across the front porch in front of my door, anchoring one thread to a branch 5 feet up. Quite the impressive feat of spidery ingenuity, but unfortunately no match for an oblivious mailman hurrying on his rounds.

I took the time one day this past week to just sit outside and commune with the local tribe of Golden Girls in my front yard. I sat near one who had conveniently built her web such that it was blocking access to my garden hose coiled directly beneath.

As I quieted my mind and tuned into the energy of L. venusta, I felt a very calm, patient presence.

I have been looking at the concept of trust lately. How much I trust myself, others and the Universe. What creates or prevents trust? How does my self-trust influence my trust in others? How can my life change if I learn to fully trust that the Universe will provide all that I need?

So as I tuned into the energy of the Golden Girls, I sensed how they trust the Universe to supply their needs.

They do what they instinctively know to do – build a web – in the best place available to them for wherever they are at that moment. Afterwards, they settle into a quiet state, simply being, and knowing that what they need will come to them.  In some cases the web may be low to the ground. It may be high above if there are bushes or tall stalks. L. venusta doesn’t wander far and wide looking for the perfect spot; rather she works with the materials and conditions at hand.
~ Such a beautiful, simple lesson. DSCN1860 L.venusta crop2

~ It’s not about our surroundings.
~  It’s not about waiting for the right time circumstance.
~  It’s about doing your best with what you have now,
~               where you are now,
~              and who you are now.
~  Trusting the Universe to provide all that you need.

~  Thank you, Golden Girls, for the beautiful lesson.


A few days later I opened up the trunk of my car where a few pots remained from a recent foraging adventure. In one of the pots was a small brownish spider in her web. A gentle reminder.

Suffice to say that the pot was moved to a discrete location in my garden and Miss Spider relocated within 24 hours. But she wasn’t deterred by her momentary situation. She followed her instincts to build a web where she was at the time, trusting .

So what is your path? Where can you simply trust, follow what your intuition guides you to do, and take the next step? And the next one…. and the next…

When Wasp whispers

Earlier this week, my son and I hiked The Cascades, a 4 mile round-trip along a stream  with cascading waters thWasp5at leads up to a waterfall.  It’s a beautiful hike in Giles County, VA.
Right as we started off along the trail, I was greeted by a Yellowjacket, which simply flew in front of me a couple feet off the ground, hovered for a moment, then passed on.  I didn’t think much of it.
We hiked up the trail, past places where the water babbled quietly; we climbed steep stone steps with moss and fern coated walls where the smell was like that of a ancient castle and the roar of water falling down a narrow passage was nearly deafening.  More ups and Cascadesdowns in the trail as we followed along the river’s edge and across wooden bridges from one side to the other.  The trail ended at a large waterfall.  While not especially high, the flow of the water over the cliff, crashing onto rocks partway down, then feeding into the pool at the bottom was  calming and almost mesmerizing.  We enjoyed a leisurely lunch as we listened to the roar of the waterfall, then began our return trip, back down the same path.  A little over half way back down the trail, I tripped over my own feet and went sprawling, knocking my thigh into a large, protruding rock and landing heavily on my hands, jarring my shoulders.  After catching my breath, waiting for the pain in my leg to subside and mentally taking stock of the fact that no serious harm had been done, I sent love and healing to my body, and we continued on down the trail.
When we arrived back at the car, I changed from boots to my white tennies, and when I happened to glance down, I saw a large blackish brown Polistes (paper) wasp on my shoe.  Not threatening or angry; simply sitting there and calmly feeling my shoe with her antennae.  As I watched, she crawled off my shoe onto the ground.  When I looked a moment later, she had vanished.
Wasp4                                                       ~~~
It wasn’t until later when I realized that Yellowjacket had appeared to show me the ‘sting’ that might happen, but I wasn’t in listening mode, so simply acknowledged her presence without much thought.  Miss Paper Wasp was there to gently reinforce the lesson.
                                        Slow down.  Listen.  Pay attention.
As I comprehended the lesson, everything in me went very still and silent – for the first time in awhile, I realized.  That inner silence that allows you to connect to your authentic self, to listen to Source, and truly be who you are.
Every insect, bug or animal that we encounter has some kind of message for us.  There are myriad books and websites regarding what these animals and encounters may mean, and every single one is different, with most offering multiple possible meanings.
But each person is different, as is their relationship to the natural world.  A cricket is generally acknowledged as a harbinger of good luck or happiness.  If you are deathly afraid of jumpy bugs, can it have that connotation for you, or might it be different?
If you read a definition and it resonates, use it.  If it doesn’t, toss it out.  Listen with your heart to the message that the creature has for you, then check to see if what you got matches what someone else has written, or if the two perhaps build on each other.
So in my case, I clearly get the need to slow down, listen, and pay attention.  Reading through various websites and books supplied the ‘why’.  I think the fall was necessary so that the message of Wasp would become clear.
A few quotes from various sources that resonate:
“Wasp represents the four elements of nature…”
“Wasps are perfect totems for those of us who need a bit of organized focus…”
“… it is time for you to pay attention to your ability to “change” things, and perhaps to investigate alchemy to see where you may want to experiment..”
 I truly need to listen, slow down and pay attention in order to move my life in the direction  I genuinely want it to go.
Thank you Wasp for your message.

Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf…er…Spider?

When I was very young I played with spiders – or so I’m told.  I don’t remember doing so.  All I remember is being afraid of them.  When exactly did I change from curiosity to fear?  Maybe when I slept outside and received a spider bite that caused my hand to swell up like an inflated latex glove?  Nah, I thought it was kinda neat.  Maybe I adopted the behavior from a sibling who hated all things crawly and jumpy.  I’m not sure of the cause.

What I do remember are a series of encounters with members of the arachnid family that evoked a definite fearful reaction on my part.  A few more memorable events include..

          Spending a week in an old house owned by relatives that had been taken over by spiders of all shapes and sizes – some with, some without webs, due to the house’s state of uninhabitedness.  I spent the entire time skirting webs and watching the ceiling and walls of my bedroom for these dangerous invaders.  One morning a rather large black spider accommodated me by walking on the ceiling to the center point above my bed and then dropping by a silken thread down onto my bed where I, prepared to battle for my life, smooshed it with one of my shoes until it was very, very, very dead.

          The wolf spider whose warp speed trek across the carpet had me dancing on my tiptoes up on a chair.

          The dessert plate sized spider that climbed up my back and onto my shoulder.

          The total spider invasion of ’83 (or there-about) that had me tearing my bed apart before sleeping in it to ensure a spiderless slumber.

My phobia hit a turning point when I arrived home at 3 am from an enjoyable evening of dancing to find 3 respectably large, black, hairy spiders in eight-legged repose, their bodies contrasting quite visibly with the light yellow of my living room wall.   Too tired and happy to bother with being scared, I told them to stay in the living room, thank you very much, I’m going to bed.

From that point on, I decided that being so afraid of spiders was a waste of energy and have been working to change that ever since.

Learning to communicate with animals (google ‘animal communication’ – it’s everywhere!) has had a huge impact.  I have discovered that spiders have myriad personalities which vary by species as well as by individual.

So while I still like most spiders better outdoors than in, my house does sport a fair number of arachnids who assist, among other things, with controlling the local cricket population in my basement.  So have I transcended my arachnophobic past?  I like to think so.

Fast forward to yesterday, where I was busily removing the ever-voracious wisteria from its vacation home in the neighboring butterfly bush and bamboo.  Neither of the latter are faint hearted, tender plants, but they were still at risk of being totally covered over by this kudzu wannabe.

I finished the job and started hauling the mass of cuttings across the yard to the compost pile.  On one of my trips back after dumping a bunch more clippings, I happened to glance down at my hand and there, between my thumb and forefinger, was a pretty, small, light yellow-brown hunter with brown markings on its body.  My calm, considered reaction?

UGH!  SPIDER!!  And I immediately blew it off my hand.

Before she even hit the ground I could hear Miss Spider yelling, “FAIL! and laughing herself silly as she scuttled off through the leaves.   That was when I realized that I was being tested.  Her sole purpose in staying on my hand was to test whether or not I was truly over my fear of spiders.  And my immediate reaction to the unexpected, close proximity of a small eight-legged arthropod was still totally fear based.  

I totally flunked.  Sigh.

Oh well, more work to be done.  One of these days I’ll pass.  Progress reports to follow…

Cicada Song

I heard my first cicada of the year last Saturday as I was on my way to a Solstice ceremony.  The Solstice is the longest day of the year.  It is the beginning of the end for the plants that flourished and nourished us in early spring, both physically and spiritually and are going dormant or preparing to endure through the warmer months.  It is the end of the beginning for others – Echinacea and cosmos , tomatoes and summer squash, along with the grains that will ripen in autumn. 

A harbinger of the summer, Cicada makes her way up from the warm earth to exchange her drab nymph attire for that of the iridescent, eye-catching  cloak of the adult cicada.  Brilliant blue or green, Cicada appears around the Summer Solstice and begins singing to us all summer with a voice that starts small but crescendos to a full symphony in July, to slowly fade and fall silent as the Fall Equinox approaches.

Oh joy!  I heard my second cicada of the season today as I left the office where I work.  Not yet a full bodied song, but like an instrument being tuned in preparation for the orchestra performance to come.

And another one this evening in a friend’s garden :-).

I LOVE this time of year!  I offer my heartfelt welcome to Cicada, who sings the Song of Summer!