July 25, 2019

A Sanctuary

Journal Entry #48

As I move towards normalcy in life, I am struggling with finding the balance between my household and my health.  It sounds silly when I say that.  My brain is functioning very linearly and simply these days.  I can finally complete a grocery list without tears.  I am completing simple tasks around the house like laundry, dishes and meals.  I am finding that rest is integral to surviving a day.  Most of the physical symptoms have resolved now with the exception of a persistent and constant headache.  Most days I can just work through it, some days it is crippling. It has been 9 weeks now of an aching head…a chemical headache they call it.

The struggle is real.

I have resorted to making lists to help me with focus.  My friend Laurie has brain cancer and she suggested that instead of getting frustrated that I make lists…that is what helps her.  I am still picking and choosing how and where to spend my Tic Tacs (energy) and the lists help me prioritize.  Although, in a perfect world, I would only do the stuff that I wantedto do, NOT the stuff that I haveto do.  There is something satisfying about crossing completed tasks off of the list. There is also something daunting about adding stuff to the list…because it never seems to end.

Life goes on.

Life goes on whether or not we participate in it.  Some days, I just sit and watch the world go by from my front porch. I wave at the passersby, chat with the neighbors, watch the continuous flow of traffic roll through the stop sign, listen to the wind ruffle the leaves and watch the starlings go in and out of their nest.

Other days, I conserve my energy to go to Canyon’s baseball games, or to take Faith shopping for necessities.  The other morning we went to Lavender Blu, to harvest some lavender, to walk the spiral and to get back to earth.  What a beautiful sanctuary she has there in Seagrave, and what a pleasure to visit at the height of the lavender bloom.  As a family, we found much solace there, a quiet and healing atmosphere and we all enjoyed the time together.

Healing looks different every day.

We are not beings that can only heal on one plane.  I’ve discovered that my body is a miraculous masterpiece of physical healing.  It is growing tissue and repairing itself both on the inside and the outside.  I am not healing it…my body innately is healing it. It already knows what to do to fix itself.  What I can do, is encourage it with positive thoughts and acclimations of its work.  I can support it nutritionally and holistically. I can give it rest.  I can listen to it and respond when it directs what it needs.

Physical healing is only one piece of the pie though.

Mentally, I am persevering with list making and focusing on just one task at a time.  And that is working for me, for now.  I do get frustrated that I can’t just jump in and offer to organize things, or help out when help is needed.  I struggle to sit and watch when there is work to do.  But I know it will get better and easier and smoother every day.

I am doing Deepak Chopra and Oprah’s 21 Day Meditation Experience right now.  Over the years, I have taken advantage of this free gift, and when it came up again last week, I joined in and have been taking the 20 minutes every day to check in. Spiritually, it is giving me the connection with myself again on a level that isn’t IN my body.  I have been spending so much time listening to my body that I haven’t been listening to the inner workings of my Spirit.  I admit that I need to dwell here more, to play with my thoughts and visions for life after Leish.

It is like I have just hit the reset button on life, and it can look, be, feel anyway that I want it to. I just don’t know what that is yet.

I have an inkling though.

Anytime I embark upon a new project, new idea or new phase, I get this fluttery excited feeling in my belly.  I haven’t felt that in a really, really, really long time.  And I felt it the other day coming out of meditation. I journaled and crafted a vision…and that fluttery, buttery feeling came with it.

For the first time, in a really long time, I felt…excited!

It’s only an inkling right now.  And that is okay.  I know that it will reveal itself more fully the more I spend time with the deeper part of me.  And so, I am adding this important piece of healing to my “to do” list too.

Whatever works, right?

For more than a decade, I have wanted to visit Laveanne, the Lavender fields in Campbellcroft.  The purple haze of Lavender has always drawn me in…it feels warm and inviting and I could only imagine its fragrance. I have followed them on Facebook for years and drool at the incredible pictures, the idea of yoga surrounded in purple fragrance, a picnic in the gardens.  I don’t understand, how I can long to do something for a decade, and never make the time to do it?  Granted, lavender is only in bloom for the month of July, but that is 10 July’s that I have not made the time to do something that my heart has called me to do.


Earlier this week, Tim took me to Laveanne.  It was surreal.  It wasn’t at all what I thought it would be.  It was better.  The lavender danced in the breeze, hummed with the bees, and wrapped around me like a warm blanket.  The other visitors faded into the background as we walked the lavender labyrinth to the inner circle.  The smell was incredible as we sat and watched the bees do their thing, completely oblivious to us as spectators.

It was a sanctuary.

For a mere $5 entrance fee, and a 45 minute drive, this week, I fulfilled an intention that I have held for more than 10 years.


Healing looks different every day for me.  It comes with little insights– some that are welcome and nudging me forward.  And, in all honesty, some that pack a punch and beg me to question why I have neglected my own longings for so long.  These insights that pack a punch, lead me down a rabbit hole of discovery, which can only be a good thing in the end.  Over the years, I have moved beyond asking the “Why” questions because they just hold me stuck in the hole…instead I ask the “How” questions which always seem to propel me forward.  Truth be told, the current rabbit hole begs the question:

How do I continue to serve others without it coming at the expense of myself and my family?

Xo Juli

2 thoughts on “A Sanctuary”

  1. Oh Juli
    I hope writing this blog doesn’t come at the expense of your health or your family
    I find myself looking everyday to see if you’ve posted another message
    Im shy and comfortable in this world I’ve created yet I want more for myself, for my family. I read your entries and Im entranced with your talk of meditation, balancing your chakras, vision boards and crystals….all these things I have quietly been interested for so long but felt to overwhelmed to learn about them, yet each blog you talk about a different way of healing and each new way of healing posted leads me to research, and research leads me to trying to apply the technique in subtle ways in my life to start
    Your courage and strength has changed my life, your outlook and sharing of information has silently been training me to take charge of my physical, mental and spiritual health
    Through your courage I have found courage
    You may not feel
    like your volunteering or helping with big projects and that would be a sad thought for someone who has always given so much of themselves
    But your writings ARE making a HUGE impact on me and my families lives
    and for that I am forever grateful to you

    1. Thank you Jen for the encouragement…it was exactly what I needed to hear today. I love that you are exploring new ways of being in your own life and am excited to hear about its positive impact in your lives. A funny thing happens when you are faced with illness…you deal. You just deal. Courage isn’t an option, we just do it – there isn’t a choice. Our choice in all of this is how we choose to handle the situations that come our way. And that is where courage comes in to play for me – there are lots of ways to handle the stuff in our lives, and the right choice, the right path for us, isn’t always the popular choice. Cheers to choosing to live courageously!

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