Down the Rabbit Hole
Tune In, Part One: The Angel on the Roof
“These seemingly random occurrences aren’t random at all…
Look for the messages. They will be there.”
- Perfect Together: Astrology, Karma, and You
We've all experienced it: the family heirloom crystal bowl that gets knocked off the shelf and lands unshattered on the tile floor; tripping on an uneven sidewalk expecting to fall flat on your face, only to stumble and regain your balance; the car that cuts in front of you and avoids smashing your side view mirror…and you… by a matter of inches. “Wow, Lucky!” you think. “That was a close one!” A variation on the theme: You've just left your corporate career to make your way as an astrologer, an uncertain gamble at best. Your sister has designed a brand-spanking-new business card featuring a half moon filled with stars. You're walking down the street and a car pulls out of a slot and there, on the asphalt, a refrigerator magnet with the exact same graphic. Even the stars are in the same place! Some might think “What a coincidence!” You scoop up the magnet and walk on, confidence in your decision having been given a major boost.
Yes, it was a “close one.” And yes, it was a coincidence. But these events are a lot more than that. They are messages that remind us that we have help and protection as we travel along this lifetime's path. Some of them are relatively small - just a tap on the shoulder to get our attention - some are not so small at all.
Let me tell you about a couple of mine that ushered in this challenging period of my own lifetime's history.
Wednesday, May 19, 2023:
I'm driving on a two-lane, busy, hilly country road approaching the crest of one of the hills. There's a flashing yellow light at a crossroad ahead, and the petals of artificial flowers in a shrine commemorating a fatality at that intersection are swaying in the soft spring breeze. A steady stream of cars moves in the opposite direction, climbing toward the crest of the same hill, unable to see what's coming towards them in the other lane, my lane.
I reach the top of the hill and slam on the brakes. A black convertible road-warrior sports car with an grey-haired late-50ish/early-60ish guy at the wheel (and a much younger woman in the passenger seat) is heading straight for me at least 40 miles an hour IN MY LANE! No time to pull over for either one of us, and besides, it seems that he is not so inclined: his speed has barely slowed.
“This is it!” I thought.
Don, by nature as imperturbable as the faces on Mount Rushmore, sits calmly in the passenger seat.
* * * * *
Let me digress a moment to share a scene from our long marital history together.
A couple of summers ago I went up to our bedroom to say “Goodnight” to my “early-to-bed” husband and noticed the clear sound of a bird chirping. Thinking the window was open, I walked over to close it because the air conditioning was on, and encountered a wet, slimy deposit on the sill.
“What's this?” I asked, only half-expecting a response.
“It's probably the bird,” Don answered, barely looking up from whatever bedtime book he was reading as he sat under the branches of a decades-old Ficus tree that shelters our sleep. I looked up to see a plump brown bird of indeterminate origin sitting in a branch, just over his head.
I still don't know how the bird ever got into the bedroom, and I'll spare you the details of how, with the help of an extraordinarily kind neighbor, we safely returned it to nature. But I think you can see why Don is such a great complement to what can be my hypervigilance and reactivity.
* * * * *
Back on Phalanx Road, there sat Don, calm in the passenger seat. But I, too, had slipped into a slowed-down world as time crawled to a virtual halt while I carefully and deliberately put on the brakes. And then, against all odds, the driver of a car in the left lane slammed on his brakes and created just enough space for the sports car to swoop to the right, slide into its queue, and drive on, without so much as a wave in my direction.
I kissed my hand and reached up to plant the kiss on the car's ceiling.
“It's the Angel on the Roof” I say to Don.
* * * * *
I don't know if there are real wing-equipped angels, but I do know that, hovering around me - and everyone - is the vigilance and protection of a benevolent Universe, so every time I survive a near miss, no matter how big or small, I blow a kiss to thank the “Angel on the Roof.”
Friday, June 2, 2023:
We are in a mini-caravan of two, heading north on the New York Thruway to my granddaughter's college graduation. My daughter Sasha is at the wheel, and I am riding shotgun. Don, Sasha's husband Steve, and Lulu's boyfriend are in the “boy's car,” 15 minutes behind us, having decided to make a pit stop at a service area. The traffic is heavy in both northbound lanes and there is a steel guard rail on the right, eliminating the shoulder. We are going a respectable 70 MPH.
All of a sudden, a beat-up, once-red pickup truck cuts in front of us and a wrongly-attached rusty trailer hitch breaks off the back of the truck, arcs in the wind tunnel created between our two vehicles, and heads on a diagonal toward my side of the windshield. The old middle school math problem that started with “Two trains, heading in opposite directions…” bizarrely flashes through my mind. The block of solid metal was heading towards us at lightning speed. Contact was inescapable…
Again, I think “This is it!”
Sasha goes into laser-focus mode: calm, collected, controlling the wheel as the hitch hurtles toward us. Once again, the world's clock slows to a crawl and I sit, immobile, staring blankly at the windshield. There is nowhere to turn. The stream of traffic, including trucks of interminable length, is unbroken on the left. The steel guardrail has eliminated the shoulder.
A dense spider web of filaments blossoms on the windshield as the hitch makes contact and is bounced back to the hood of our car. The windshield is not breached, but has shattered into a million slivers, at least half of which are covering me from head to foot. Sasha stays calm and collected, somehow maintaining control until the guardrail finally ends and we can pull off to the side of the road. Thankfully, we are both unharmed and she helps me rid myself of the shattered shower of glass.
Once again, kissing my hand, I reach up to touch the ceiling of the car.
“It's the Angel on the Roof!” I say.
* * * * *
In a matter of a couple of weeks, two messages of protection. Messages that say “You're not alone.” That the eye is on the sparrow. Messages that affirm that “All will be well” even if it doesn't look that way right now. I think of these incidents often during these times. The thought of them has sustained and encouraged me as I've navigated the current challenges surrounded by the love and care of the angels - terrestrial and celestial - that accompany me. And I thank them all every time.
Down the Rabbit Hole: Tune In, Part Two: A Fish in the Water
Only weeks after the incident on the New York Thruway, I got the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. It launched a month-long investigation of treatment options and choices. Thankfully, I had daughter/doctor Sasha at my side, guiding the process, along with a big gallery of cheerleaders urging me on with their love and support.
The surgery was to be risky and complicated, and it all came down to a “Sophie’s Choice” between two highly – no, amazingly – qualified and committed doctors, each with his own distinctive “extra something” that made objective evaluation and selection virtually impossible. What’s more, they had both offered the exact same astrologically auspicious date for the procedure. And I simply liked them both. During preliminary meet-and-greet chitchat, I had even learned that one had a Scorpio Sun and the other was an Aquarian.
The clock was ticking and I didn’t want to lose that surgery date.
The night before the deadline as I was getting into bed, I asked for a clue: a dream, a message, a “knowing” – anything that could help me break the tie. But the next morning, nothing had come through, leaving me nothing to do but soldier on.
Remembering that it was the day of a Full Moon, and always interested in the Native American interpretation of the lunar cycle, I distracted myself from the situation at hand by browsing through some of my research and there it was: The Full Moon on August 1, 2023 was in the sign of Aquarius and was identified as the STurgeon Moon in indigenous lore, the sturgeon being a fish, still existent, dating back to ancient times, and best known for its caviar roe.
Holy crow! Take away the “T” in sturgeon and what do you have? If Dolly the cat was still with me in anything but spirit, even she would have recognized that a message was being delivered! The Aquarian surgeon it was. And, as if to seal the deal, where did he operate? In Neptune, New Jersey, at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, one of the places where the sturgeon still swims.
Decision made. And, thank heavens and stars, I’m here to tell the story.
* * * * *
The messages are all around us. Look for them. Ask for them. And remember to thank the “Angel on the Roof.”