I wanted to write a post celebrating a small success for myself … not as praise from the outside world but just a nice accomplishment of listening to Spirit and taking my time. My shower drain became clogged several days ago … it was taking half-an-hour to drain and my normal experience would be to buy draino-o and unclog it. BUT … I wanted to try it more naturally if at all possible without using harsh chemicals. Throughout the day I was working with clients and I kept getting these two words in my head “baking soda” and “vinegar” but didn’t understand. I forgot to look up the information about the clogged drain before I left work. I drove back into Tucson and stopped at Whole Foods …. oh yeah … I then remembered what I wanted to look up … so I went online on my phone and there popped up “baking soda and vinegar” to help clear drained clogs. The website also sighted that first I needed to pop off the drain cover, remove any visible clog and then put a cup of baking soda and 8 oz of vinegar followed by hot water.
Okay … I can do this I thought … I grabbed a small screwdriver and popped off the cover. Step one complete. Yay! Next I took out intial clog of what appeared to be a dead rat (really hair) but was disgusting looking nonetheless and gaggingly I threw in the garbage. Step two complete, not with grace, but still finished. Whew … next poor the baking soda then the vinegar and watch the boiling chemistry experiment volcano up from the depths of the drain. Step three, check. Then I poored hot water to finish the four step process. Success! (or so I thought …… bu bu bah!) NOT!
The next morning I awoke, stepped in shower and geez-o the water began to fill again. Bummer. Do I really have to resort to drain-o … the water still drained eventually. I thought … okay … not an emergency … take my time … now what to do. I went to work again and had an image of wire hanger in my head but when I imagined trying to pull stuff up I imagined the wire hanger not holding onto anything. I then got an image of like the idea of a bottle brush but obviously needing something longer. I went to the store and in the laundry department there was a large bottliebrushlooking mechanism used for cleaning lint traps . This just might work. I made the purchase and headed home. Round 2 .. ding, ding.
Popped off the drain cover, no problem. Next … the not so fun job of the drain … I won’t go into detail but after the third attempt of pushing the large brush down drain, I pulled up the creature from the Black Lagoon …. eegads … if I gagged before, now I almost wretched up my guts … I threw it away along with the brush. Repeat the baking sode, vinegar and water. Did I successfully complete task sans liquid chemicals that harm the planet and myself?
YES! The next morning, shower, water pouring down the drain gracefully! Ahhhhhh ….. I thanked Spirit for gifting me the images in my head that allowed me to find the right tools for the job and to take my time.
A friend of mine shared a poem with me the other day that I think is appropriate for this story … called “For Strong Women” by Marge Piercy.
A strong woman is a woman who is straining
A strong woman is a woman standing
on tiptoe and lifting a barbell
while trying to sing “Boris Godunov.”
A strong woman is a woman at work
cleaning out the cesspool of the ages,
and while she shovels, she talks about
how she doesn’t mind crying, it opens
the ducts of the eyes, and throwing up
develops the stomach muscles, and
she goes on shoveling with tears in her nose.
A strong woman is a woman in whose head
a voice is repeating, I told you so,
ugly, bad girl, bitch, nag, shrill, witch,
ballbuster, nobody will ever love you back,
why aren’t you feminine, why aren’t
you soft, why aren’t you quiet, why aren’t you dead?
A strong woman is a woman determined
to do something others are determined
not be done. She is pushing up on the bottom
of a lead coffin lid. She is trying to raise
a manhole cover with her head, she is trying
to butt her way through a steel wall.
Her head hurts. People waiting for the hole
to be made say, hurry, you’re so strong.
A strong woman is a woman bleeding
inside. A strong woman is a woman making
herself strong every morning while her teeth
loosen and her back throbs. Every baby,
a tooth, midwives used to say, and now
every battle a scar. A strong woman
is a mass of scar tissue that aches
when it rains and wounds that bleed
when you bump them and memories that get up
in the night and pace in boots to and fro.
A strong woman is a woman who craves love
like oxygen or she turns blue choking.
A strong woman is a woman who loves
strongly and weeps strongly and is strongly
terrified and has strong needs. A strong woman is strong
in words, in action, in connection, in feeling;
she is not strong as a stone but as a wolf
suckling her young. Strength is not in her, but she
enacts it as the wind fills a sail.
What comforts her is others loving
her equally for the strength and for the weakness
from which it issues, lightning from a cloud.
Lightning stuns. In rain, the clouds disperse.
Only water of connection remains,
flowing through us. Strong is what we make
each other. Until we are all strong together,
a strong woman is a woman strongly afraid.
So I faced my fear of the creature lurking in my shower drain …. and as scary as it was … I did survive although if you saw what I saw, it was not pretty!
( Story by: Shannon Sullivan
Poem by: Marge Piercy
Adventures by: SDFDC ( Sonoran Desert Faerie Dust Clan)
Thank you to: Our Readers)