Four years of loss. The Chinese fear the number four. Some even refuse to live in a house with the number four in its address. From 2008 to 2012 I endured a series of painful events, events that forced me to look at myself and my life with new eyes. I was hurt and suffered tremendous pain. But pain is the pathway to growth and growth is a desired outcome. Growth means we have learned and are better today than we were yesterday.
I had help from higher powers. It was God or all Gods or an angel or sprit animal that came to me in three dreams. The dreams helped me to see my world through the lens of the Buddhist religion and philosophy. The dreams inspired me to learn and understand the words of the prayer of St. Francis of Assisi.
I grew up very poor, in the 1970’s, in the High Point Housing projects in West Seattle. My father was absent and my mother for most of my childhood was a distant and sometimes volatile alcoholic. But I was smart–an honor student all through school–and although I never finished college (didn’t even attempt college until the age of 39) I was smart/and or lucky enough to marry a kind and generous man.
We moved to the suburbs and purchased a new two story, three bedroom house. I drove a Lexus and thought I’d really achieved something.
I was boastful, proud and stubborn. I was foolish, ungrateful and blind.
I lost my mother, my home and a watched a dear friendship devolve into a mere acquaintanceship. I lost my balance.
The Hierarchy of Weeds is the story of how it all fell apart and how my life reset itself. And in the end it was poetry that saved me–again.
I’ve shared the story in this blog in separate stand alone pieces. I hope it works. I hope that someone may glean a bit of wisdom from it or even just enjoy it for the sake of a story. I’ve set it free.
Thank you for reading,
Barbara G. Caceres