The recent lockdown of everyday living due to the Covid19 virus brings up many emotions and feelings that for some are very uncomfortable and for others like myself a chance to see an old memory in new light. While I was a child during the 1970s I contracted a virus that slowly closed up and strangled my throat. A membrane had grown across my wind pipe and began to suffocate me. I literally couldn’t breathe. I was slowly but surely choked towards death, my lungs struggling to gasp in every last gulp of air. My mother, a full time nurse and an excellent single parent, listened to her strong and insistent intuition and strongly persisted at our family doctor that something was very wrong and that I needed immediate attention. Doctor Hull was a highly experienced doctor. He was called out to our home and he attended to me. It took two visits from him before I received the necessary care and attention I required thanks to my eagle-eyed mother. A young girl in our street called Rachael had a similar affliction.
Ultimately because of Dr. Hull’s depth of experience as a ship’s doctor he recognised and pin-pointed what this malady was and he knew what action was needed. He had seen this many years ago while he served on a ship. It was too late for Rachael though. She was rushed to hospital and was operated upon. She was placed onto a ventilator and then in a life-saving move the surgeon during an emergency operation cut open her throat and removed the membrane and saved her life. A tracheotomy scar on her throat would mark this brush with death for the rest of her life. Dr. Hull however saw and felt with me that he had caught this virus at an early stage and proposed another course of action. I was bombarded with large and heavy doses of penicillin. While struggling to swallow and breathe I was forced to ingest pills which aimed at killing off the virus. I entered a new realm of horrors.
Bed bound and terrified I was given a ring side seat of hallucinatory visions whilst the heavy daily doses of penicillin played havoc with my fevered mind. Dark slithering metallic spiders swarmed at the bottom of my bed. They crept up the blankets and squirmed in a way that liquid mercury would while attempting to coalesce into something more in keeping with a pulsating blob. Before my father was taken away to the mental hospital we experienced a rare family outing. I was taken to see 2001: A Space Odyssey at a very early age. My face during these bed bound visionary horrors while under the high fever of sickness reminded me of Dr. David Bowman’s own reaction as he travelled through the vast transdimensional gateway in the miasmic void.
After what seemed like an eternity the virus began to retreat. My throat slowly healed and my ability to breathe and swallow returned. From this time onwards I viewed life very differently indeed. Each tiny moment became a precious jewel. Every single day was an empire of beauty. Every new breath, each and every single chance to taste food and swallow something delicious was a celebration. My small collection of 2000AD comics became a massive library. My ability to draw without choking to death was a massive and heartfelt grateful relief. My inner joy and deep gratitude of just simply being alive was like appearing at the end of Star Wars receiving a medal and turning to smile at a room full of freedom fighters. I was overwhelmed with unfettered appreciation not just towards the NHS, Dr. Hull and his very pertinent life choices within his own career but also to my mother’s repeated insistence and extraordinary judgement that saved my life.
As always it is the smallest things that are important. The smallest and seemingly most tiny of details that take on new and powerful resonance. ‘Don’t sweat the small stuff’ the old saying goes. But when the sweat and droplets of human saliva itself shed and create a Trojan horse of death it is important not just to look at that sweat and saliva but also to examine the underlying symptoms that brought us all here in the first place. Nature and the supernatural worlds are sending us a message, a harsh and extraordinarily painful message. Our planet has an intelligence. It is alive. It’s an intelligence that works on a revolutionary and multi-level scale far beyond our remarkable scientific comprehension. We are just one of many species that inhabit this globe. By destroying and abusing this sacred and precious world and its supportive and cradling environments with a toxic polluting Russian roulette style attitude towards that environment we risk total oblivion. This total lack of acknowledgement or respect towards land spirits and the divine Gaian goddess is no longer acceptable in any shape or form whatsoever. We are all connected, inter-connected and interdependent on each other and this realm in countlessly sublime, cosmic and hidden ways.
While under this enforced lockdown it seems for me to be a good idea to go through my own inner store boxes and carefully unpack and study the snap shots of memories from my life. I am currently personally meditating on numerous events during this important and rare opportunity for peace, solitude and inner contemplation. Maybe the wars across the world will stop. Maybe the hateful rhetoric and insane lust for money can be stilled. The world has stopped and the golden opportunity to get off it and fully respect it is now at hand. I am very deeply grateful and humbled by the vast complex myriad of life forms in this continuum and currently reconsider my connection and attitude towards them all; the virus, the bacteria, the vegetation, the very air itself, the creatures and animals, the insects, the seas, rivers, lakes, mountains, deserts, valleys, the ghosts, the spirits, the higher unseen realms and the whole of humanity and its infinite variations of being. Peace comes from within. May you appreciate its abundant treasure.