Tethered….Are You?

Oxygen tubing...50ft...TetheredWhen I was thinking about writing this blog, I of course was focused on the fact that I am now


…permanently to tubing supplying my air. 

The definition of tethered is:

1. a rope, chain by which an animal is fastened to a fixed object

2. to fasten or confine, restricted by bonds

3. at the end of one’s tether=resources, patience or strength


The subject of my words was to be my battle with Systemic Mast Cell Disease in order to educate. I feel all of those examples above. Out of the the last few months only a couple of weeks have been spent at home.  I was tethered in a hospital to more than one tube.  My goal was to describe my experiences of hospitalization and the reality of now requiring constant oxygen because mast cells have taken over a pieces of my lungs.  One more organ in combat with mast cells for survival.

IMG_4012IMG_4014This is life now.

Tethered in many ways.

A metaphor for life in general.


To beliefs, to thoughts, to emotions, people, situations.

It all relates to being attached.  This is my new normal.  Just as with each layer of trauma peeled away in my writing of the two memoirs…a new normal emerges.  It really is up to me how to live in this new place.

 It can go either of two ways: curl up on the couch giving in to the idea…or: adapt to life and living, only in a different way.

 To fight and grow and accept what is.  To learn to live around the coils of tubing or thoughts and beliefs and change what I can, when I can.

 I also relate this to living with the effects of trauma.  Adoption, abuse, rapes….  It all ties us to the pain of suffering and if we chose to remain tethered to the past or our thoughts about it and belief systems.

 When we settle into the present moment,

we can see beauties and wonders right before our eyes-a newborn baby,

the sun rising in the sky.

-Thich Nhat Hanh


When you find your thoughts heading towards the couch, challenge them, ask if it’s really true or can we perhaps do one thing today, even if it’s getting off the couch and moving to the chair.


Is it true you are really tethered, or is it your thoughts that are confining you.  I’ve had a lot of practice with challenging my thoughts in the last few years. Adoption reunion, recognizing your deeply ingrained belief systems, pulling them up to examine them like roots on a tree, one by one.  It’s not easy work but then, being attached to something that causes you pain is the alternative.

Toni Bernhard in her book How To Be Sick quotes her favourite Zen Haiku Master, the eighteenth-century poet, Kobayashi Issa.  He suffered terribly with many losses and yet managed to write many haikus, some of which will always bring a smile.  She states, “Zen helps”.

The world of dew is the world of dew

And yet, and yet…..

The last line tells us what we constantly must remind ourselves of…nothing is certain.  Dew quickly changes before our very eyes and so does life.

For those of us that live in a physical or emotional state of being tethered…

Adoptees, Trauma survivors, Mom’s of Loss, anyone suffering…know in the world of Zen there is always…

And yet, and yet, and yet….

Yes, Zen helps.

“dew” can be illness, adoption, trauma…..and yet, and yet….


7 thoughts on “Tethered….Are You?

  1. what would we give to not have these tethers. shackles, binds, bars, schedules, traumas, wounds, scars? to rely on another day and one more, to seek the hope of greeting sunrise, awake with the bird songs, narural healing sonds, or place our courage unfettered to new pages again and again. we seek as much to be mostly who we think we could be rather than live with what we know is for just now, strength in this moment… it all is part of a bigger cycle, true. recognizing every new challenge as though it were a new event rearranging our space until recognition is also readjusting to limits…and much of it seems so very unkind, intrusive even…we keep getting up , lifting every ache and heavy muscle as opportunity to kick off the covers, seek the immediate, recognize the good, acknowledge our own beating heart, accept our connections however they come and where ever they go. may the air supply sustain you as each lung is ready to do its intended function – fully, freely, filtering, functioning, filling up and releasing. in big gratitude for learning transcendence beyond limits. and to have claire share her journey of peace, clarity, mission. smile bow

    • Precious Lucy and your words…
      What can I say, but thank you.
      The ultimate goal is not to love, but to break down all the barriers than prevent us from doing so. As I work through my barriers, one by one, they fall exposing the raw essence of “I Am”
      So grateful you are a part of that journey.

  2. I am in awe of your ability to adapt. To find the strength to carry on. To just get on with it as my mothers generation was so fond of saying. Bravo Claire. You are an inspiration. You are quite simply, one of my Hero’s.

  3. Claire … So happy to read your blog today … Your writing isn’t tethered … It’s as free as a bird !
    Lots of love xo

  4. We are glad to see you back to writing on your blog. It is a new life changing experience you have been through recently. You have been in so many health scares and now even with the full time oxygen it has given you much relief. I am so happy to see you smile again. Namaste….

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