Just thinking about it I feel my mouth dry up and my body and soul start shriveling. Rolling up like a dry piece of parchment.
No savour, no succulence, no spirit.
Moistless, Tasteless. Almost total numbness.
The second we realize we are there we start trying to figure out how to escape. At least I do. Who wants to be stuck in complete nothingness?
Only, if you just hold on for a second. If you just allow yourself to take a breath. Close your eyes. Accept you are where you are for a reason. And open your eyes again.
You will see the desert land is not empty. It just seems that way at first glance. Take a closer look and you will see an infinite number of orange, rose, golden, yellow, brown, grey, white pearls. A beetle that scurries on to find the perfect place to dig. A desert fox turning her large ears like discs trying to find and catch the beetle. The dance of the hot air above the ground.
At one point in my life I struggled hard with self-hatred and a distorted body image. For month and month on end I dragged myself through desert land, denying myself rest, denying myself even the water in the oasis. Just pushing myself onward onward without even looking up to see if I was going in the right direction.
I was given treatment and met a group of young women also struggling, and a therapist: Madeleine.
Madeleine said many wise things, but one thing I carry with me to this day:
Only in the desert, the Saguaro blooms.
Sometimes we have to be in desert land for certain things to come to life. Desert land can be a gift. A gift of rest for the eye and the mind. A gift of focusing on the essential. A gift of emptying oneself and one’s surroundings to give room for something else. That time I rediscovered my voice. And my love of singing. And through singing a discovery that my body can be used to create something beautiful.
Desert land is still dry. It is still harsh. But it is also serene. It is also peace and quiet.
What are your experiences of desert land? What was your Saguaro?