FROM THE DIARIES OF A TIME KEEPER
This post is the episode transcript to season one episode eight on The Divination Channel (our podcast). You can listen to the episode on our website, or subscribe to Otherworldly Giants on Apple or Spotify.
Giles: “Previously on Buffy the Vampire Slayer”
Giles, I know I’m a modern day queer brown Vampire Slayer, but that’s not the name of this podcast.
Giles: “You never train with me anymore, they’re gonna kick your ass!”
Giles: “Was that a bit honest? Terribly sorry!”
Giles, are you drunk?
Giles: “Yes, quite a bit.”
Ugh, fine, I’ll do it myself. PREVIOUSLY ON OTHERWORLDLY GIANTS, THE DIVINATION CHANNEL!
[cue Otherworldly Giants theme song]
Welcome to part two of an epic 4-part mid season finale for season one on our channel, titled, Grief Love and Buffy: a True-Life Multiverse Podcast Drama About a Queer Witch and her Two Black Cats.
Last episode we discussed Slayers, Watchers, Witch Hunts, and Time Loops. I do really recommend listening to part one first before you jump in to this here part two…especially because at the end of part one, myself, Estha and Rahel (who are my twin black cats), the three of us were blasted by a time warp from a green emerald city underworld all the way back to Pangea. So you definitely want to know what’s up with allathat, before you listen to this episode.
[music fades out]
Question: A Queer Love Spell, A Terrifying Climate Crisis, and Mighty Ducks 2 all walk into a bar. What happens next? You’re in luck! You’ll find out in this episode! In part 2 of this 4 part series we are talking about all of that, plus more Multiverse Philosophy, plus MORE Giles because god knows a podcast could always use more GILES…
Giles: “Dammit man, we have to get inside! Our families are in there! Our mothers…and tiny, tiny babies!”
Speaking of fathers, take note in this episode, I’ll be sharing a little bit about my experience of my Dad’s death, and my cats’ death, and what those moments taught me about Grief, Love and Trust. I will be discussing some major spoilers from Buffy and from Mighty Ducks 2, so please take care of yourself and protect yourself accordingly if you are spoiler sensitive.
We’re dropping both part one and two of our mid-season finale today on October 3 2023, and you’ll just have to wait for parts 3 and 4 which will be released later this month during eclipse season. You don’t want to miss the next episodes folks, they are next level exciting, with some special guest appearances by Pluto, the planet of death, Saturn the planet of dedication and Jupiter, the planet of…
Faith: “I’m Faith!”
So get ready. Subscribe to Otherworldly Giants wherever you get podcasts, follow @otherworldlygiants on instagram, do what you have to do to stay tuned. That said, let’s jump into today’s story. This is episode eight, part 2 of a 4 part series, and it’s called:
“TIME IS A HEARTBEAT”
[sound of a wave]
We pick up right where we left off, in a land before our time. Wide stretches of hills and valleys, an open blue sky, a lake in the distance. Estha, Rahel and I are up in a tree. The dinosoar stampede has died down. It’s safe now, so we climb down.
This is Pangea.
[sounds of water]
It’s the name we gave to Gaia’s land when it was whole, our supercontinent.
About 200 million years ago, during the Triassic period, Gaia’s body broke apart into the 7 land masses we know today. Before the infamous split, believe it or not, Pangea was a happy family.
Estha, Rahel and I fall to our knees in gratitude. We breathe in the miracle of home, unbroken. We spend the day basking in the sun beams, the breeze, the peace.
In the west, there’s a gorgeous volcano. In the east, a magnificent waterfall.
It’s not scary, it’s not dangerous. Listen to the Otherworldly Giants and they’ll say: “Yeah. We are too much, and it’s more than enough. What an incredible time to be alive.”
[sounds of water end]
Rahel stands next to the volcano. She’s wearing a stunning 7-layer wedding dress. Each layer is a different part of the sky, alive and active: soft, fluffy white clouds on one layer, clear midnight filled with bright stars on another, cleansing rain on a warm summers day, radiating sun at bright high noon, and so on.
Estha stands next to the waterfall, looking as handsome as ever in a luxurious wedding suit made of 7 layers of the earth. Brown and red soil, clay, mud, sand, smooth, soft, strong. Thick with nutrients and delicious riches. Teeming with small lifeforms, living and dying, blooming and wilting and birthing again.
The three of us gather here today in holy trinity, held together with a strong, shining green thread.
From high above we are gifted with the unexpected sounds of our future, a family of Ducks, a Flying-V, quacking overhead. We giggle at the miracle and marvel of Ancestral Time. Captain Duck drops a feather into our triangle, a blessing for our union.
The feather levitates in our sacred space. Black sand from the volcano joins, and so does water from the waterfall. They swirl together in rainbow colours, in all the numbers. They spin faster and faster in alchemy, until [shwooop] our collective collaboration creates a rune.
A small stone, once a giant, now embued with ancient story. Carved into the corners are 4 prizmatic beads.
[music: “As Time Passes”]
22 beads form a circle in the middle. It’s a template. A code that will be unlocked and spread through the Multiverse at a specific time.
Estha and Rahel step into the triangle, facing me. They hold their palms open toward me. The rune floats into their open hands.
“Every 4 years and 22 days, a miracle occurs. It takes 22 days to tell a story that takes place over 4 days. The 22nd day of the fourth month, is when we begin. 22 days after the 4th month, is when we meet again. And the year that spells 4:22 backwards is a miracle that reminds us of one forever more.”
“Dear Ammu. We gift you this rune. But you cannot just keep it for yourself. You also cannot give it to just anyone. You have to know who it is for, and you won’t know until you know. When you know, it’ll be as clear as a future that calls and a past that hurts.
Estha grabs nearby stick and swiftly bops me on the head.
“You will be confronted with the discomfort of carrying something special that you know is not just for you. You will be frustrated and overwhelmed because you cannot care for this alone.”
“You will be confronted with the fear of being seen when the time of giving inevitably comes. You will be asked to take a risk and share something so precious, when you have no guarantee that anyone else could care for it as well as you have.
“This rune offers the medicine of Patience. Through self-doubt and Letters to the Universe: will I ever find the person this is for? Do they even exist?”
“This rune offers you the medicine of Courage. To take action when you know it’s time to move, even after you’ve found refuge in recluse and safety in a private cave.
They both speak together:
“Wielding the call of a Time Keeper is a grand responsibility. If you push when you need to be still, you risk sabotaging the entire relationship. If you stay still when you need to move, you risk losing your entire shot.
Carrying this gift requires ferocity with no trace of desparation. Aggression that is peaceful. It requires silence that does not rush the rests in between notes in a symphony.
The marriage of Patience and Courage requires perfect precision. Never hesitating, never forcing. Never too soon, never too late.
Not everyone can handle this, but you our dear Ammu, we put our Trust in your hands.”
I look down and see that I’m holding 5 block letters beating, pumping blood, physical, visceral in my palms: T-R-U-S-T.
[sounds of water]
The name of our Rune is Re-Union, and our Spell is About Time.
[sounds of water stop]
200 million years ago, Earth lived through the one of the biggest changes its children have seen, when Pangea chose to split up the family.
Gaia’s children of today are living through changes of a similar magnitude. We can’t ignore the climate emergency. Wildfires, floods, droughts, hurricanes.
After the wildfire smoke came through Tkaronto this past summer, everyone began writing their emails with: “I hope you’re doing well during these apocalyptic times” just like when Covid first hit everyone started their emails with: “I hope you’re doing well, during these unprecedented times.” I tried really hard for a while to find other words for my emails, but then I just said fuck it, why not lean in.
A question I hear a lot of people ask nowadays is: “Are we too late?”
Meaning: have we gone beyond the point of no return, have we fucked up our chances to survive as a species? Can we get our shit together as a collective in time?
Is it possible to transform the systems that are destroying the planet and all life – domination, extraction, incarceration, policing, punishment, and all the social, economic, interpersonal stuff that comes with that – if abolition in our lifetime is the goal, do we actually have enough time to do it? Or are we too late?
I certainly don’t have all the answers, but I do believe that everyone has some of the answers, or even pieces of some of the answers. So I want to offer what I have from where I am.
I think that asking the question: “are we too late?” right now is kind of like asking someone to tell you if you’ve won or lost when you’re at the end of the second period of a 3 period hockey game.
Get what I’m saying?
Willow: “Hello! Your sister, not dead yet!”
Remind me to tell you about the time I was playing double’s badminton in grade 8 gym class, the score was at 14 to 2. At that point in 1998, double’s badminton scoring went up to 15. Whoever gets 15 points first wins. My partner and I were winning 14 to 2. We just needed one more point to win.
[Laughs] Nobody ever gets to talk to me about a lost cause, okay? I am evidence of ‘it ain’t over til it’s over. 14 to 2.
When I sit down at my Altar and ask my Ancestors very serious questions about climate change and what’s to do about it, the first thing they show me are the Mighty Ducks hockey team singing “We are the Champions” around a campfire.
They love answering my serious questions with wacky shit because they think it’s hilarious, but their wacky shit is deceptively serious and so is mine.
What they mean to say is: this is the era of our champion song. We have already won. Stop living your life as if you still need to win.
Look, if you’re a Mighty Duck, and you’re at the end of the second period, your team is losing to some overwhelming odds like 14 to 2. When you step into that locker room to rest and recalibrate before the last period, of course you’re demoralized. Of course there are very real obstacles. Of course you’re scared and confuse and unsure about how to turn this around.
But there’s still time left on the clock. You have to get out there and keep playing. If the end of the second period is when you decide to give up because that’s when you decided it was impossible, that’s not actually a loss. That’s a forfeit. A forfeit means there was still time left, and you didn’t even play.
A team in a hockey tournament forfeits when it’s their turn to play and they don’t even show up. When a forfeit occurs, the win automatically defaults to whoever was already ahead at that time.
I don’t know about you, but I’m a DUCK.
Dwayne Roberston: “Where I come from we treat ladies with respect!“
Connie Moreau: “Thank you Dwayne, but I’m no lady. I’M A DUCK! HEUH!”
Mighty Ducks 2 is one of the greatest films ever created, at least according to my 10 year old self.
I did watch the whole Mighty Ducks series recently and I don’t know if I can say it holds up well, other than for nostalgic purposes – if it does, I think the first movie is the best one – but I’m not really the best judge of this because my child self is a very loud and active fan.
Child Self: “We will, we will, QUACK YOU!”
Gordon Bombay: “QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK QUACK”
Mr. Ducksworth: “Gordon, stop QUACKING.”
So it’s December of 1994. Mighty Ducks 2 had recently come out on VHS. During that Christmas holiday, I watched that movie every single day for 15 days straight. Every day. I hadn’t even seen the original movie at that point, I just loved Mighty Ducks 2.
Jen Linley: “Yeah whatever happened to those actors?”
Dawson Leery: “Languishing somewhere in TV obscurity.”
Pacey Witter: “No way, Emilio Estevez, he was in those Duck movies, remember? Those were classic!”
I knew the names of all the hockey players by heart, I knew the names of all the actors who played all the characters, I knew everybody’s jersey numbers.
Plus, little Joshua Jackson, PACEY MY LOVE (Pacey and Joey foreverrrr)
Can you believe that this guy…
Pacey Witter: “I know how I feel, you know how I feel. That much is obvious by now. But during this whole process we’ve managed to miss the point. Because the point is not how I feel, it’s how YOU feel…So how do you feel?”
…Is also this little sweet muffin???
Charlie Conway: “I trust you! The other guys do too, they just don’t know it, you gotta talk to em! You can’t walk out on the ducks, we’re your team!”
Okay, so near the end of Mighty Ducks 2, the team faces off with their Arch Nemeses..sees…who are really, really scary bad guys.
Leslie Knope: “Andy will you be Iceland?”
Andy Dywer: “The Bad Guys from Mighty Ducks 2? Don’t think so.”
At the end of the second period, the Mighty Ducks are losing badly, the score is 5 to 1, and it looks pretty hopeless.
But something happens in the liminal space between periods. The Mighty Ducks emerge from the locker room, completely renewed. They rally into triumph, and they win the game.
How did they do it?
You can’t enter a 3rd period like that without believing in yourself wholeheartedly, no matter what the outcome is.
[music: Mighty Ducks theme]
Gordon Bombay, esteemed coach of the Mighty Ducks, why do they call him the Minnesota Miracle Man? Because he doesn’t just teach his team how to win or lose. He teaches them how to love the game. He teaches them how to fly.
When you ask me if it’s too late? I don’t know about you, but I ain’t giving up on my time when it’s my time to play. For no other reason but because I love the game. I don’t know what’s gonna happen but I sure as hell will not forfeit to whatever wacky ass default we got goin on right now.
I know that we’re here for a True-Life Multiverse podcast drama that blurs the line between fantasy and reality, but let me speak to you straightforwardly for a minute.
It’s very true that I had a vision in 2021. I was sitting at my Altar in mediation, and an Ancestor came to me, and me the exact dates I was going to meet the love of my life March 17 2021. And they also told me that Rahel was going to die that year too, on May 22nd.
I know I make this sound real cute, talking about Buffy and Mighty Ducks…
Fred Burkle: “Oh my god, Angel, you’re cute!”
Angel Angel: “You’re fired.”
[music: “Ripples in Time”]
But truly, I have achieved a deep level of mastery, not just as an astrologer, but as a Planetary Priestess. I live in devotion with some serious rituals for personal and collective change. I fuck with ancient primordial energies – water, fire, love, death, time. I’m comfortable with heavy duty spell work because I know how to do it responsibly, and I do it on the couch, or while in bed, in real cute sweatpants. I’m not perfect, but imperfection’s the point, excellence is the game and I’m the disciplined recklessness of a star player. What I mean to say is that I am apprenticed and practised with trusted elders, teachers and community. I am no nonsense when it comes to the principles that guide me. I trust myself and I have receipts.
So when an Ancestor visits me at my Altar and gives me the exact dates for love and death, it rattles me.
That goes against the rules.
I’ve worked as an astrologer for over a decade, I’ve read a lot of people’s birth charts, I’ve channeled divination readings for many, and I don’t predict death. I don’t believe it’s possible for anyone to predict death. Sure you can see the energy of death, but that could manifest as anything, from changing careers, ending relationships, moving across the country. The presence of death can even bring new love, or great success, if that’s a big change for you.
But to predict the date that a loved one will leave their body, is not possible. Even if it were, it wouldn’t be ethical. Sharing that kind of information with someone very easily could eat them alive, it would do more harm than good.
Now when it comes of love. I’ve said before on the topic of ethical love spells, a love spell is one that you first and foremost cast on yourself.
Often when we talk about this, we’re like, oh I prayed for someone, I called love in, and then I met someone who completely fits your prayer and your spell, and you’re like, OH MY GOD I MANIFESTED THIS PERSON.
Um, no you didn’t. Are you their mom? Their creator? [laughs] That person was a living, sovereign being with a life of their own before you met them – they didn’t just pop from your rib the minute your spell was complete.
Multiverse Philosophy Lesson #1: Manifestation Magic
[clockmaker’s sound effect]
You didn’t manifest your partner, but you did manifest a version of yourself that is aligned and compatible with them, and you manifested a lifeforce around you and within you that has the capacity to give and recieve within the bounds of that relationship.
One of the most important parts of magic and ritual is to let go of the attachment to the outcome. Get really clear on what you want, be super specific about it, build that into your ritual, then send it to the earth, and let it go.
The idea is that a lot of external things we imagine about what we want are severely limited by our conditioning, our expectations, our wounds, our upbringing. But when we tune into the primordial qualities of what we want: ease in communication, aligned maturity levels, co-creative passion, uproaring laughter as a regular occurance. The universe feels the frequency and they can bring it to us in a form that is much better than anything we could have imagined.
When I cast a love spell for myself in 2015, to call in the life partner of my dreams, I named everything I wanted to experience in a partnership, and then I let it go. Now, eight years later, I know the energy of my person like the back of my hand, or a rune in my palms. I released all attachment to their external qualities, or the particulars of their personhood, including gender, race, what they do for a living, what they look like, etc. I’m open to the package (sexual inuendo not intended?) as long as what’s in the package is the core of what I want. If it’s not, then it’s not my person!
And yet, here the Ancestors come marching in, like a toddler interrupting a zoom meeting, breaking my own rules. Giving me exact dates (March 17th, May 22nd) for love and death. And telling me shit about my partner that I’m not supposed to know.
After everything I just said about detaching from external outcomes…
I haven’t met my partner yet, but I know their personality quirks, their temperment in different social situations. I know things about their relationship wounds, details about their career. I do know about their race, their gender, their ancestry. I can feel the texture of their voice. I can even sort of see what they look like.
I have to constantly check myself: am I projecting? Is this my imagination? Are these my desires and expectations?
None of the above, the reality is that I’m just listening. Our connection in spirit is so strong, and I can’t deny how powerful I’ve become over the years as a channeler.
I can’t ignore how many powerful witches I have around me, and how many times I’ve experienced psychic mediums who were virtual strangers, who sat down with me and channeled a conversation with my Dad in the spirit realm, and it was my Dad. I sit with animal communicators all the time who know nothing about me, who pick up a cosmic phone and deliver messages from Estha and Rahel. And it’s Estha and Rahel.
It’s not a stretch anymore to know that my partner is as powerful as I am, in their own way, and energetically speaking, we kick back and shoot the shit all the time. I know about the drama in their past break-up, I know they have a bit of a temper, just like I can be a bit of a cry-baby, because they told me.
I know them, maybe most of all because…this isn’t the first time we’ve met.
[music: “Indian Ocean”]
Multiverse Philosophy Lesson #2: Past Lives
Most of us alive right now: we don’t know how old we are.
But we have this feeling. When we fall in love, whether it’s romantic, platonic, familial, across species, we know in our bones before language makes sense, that we’ve known each other before.
We’ve shared other lives, traveled other timelines. We’ve had other stories. Other beginnings and endings. Different names we’ve called each other, different roles we’ve played.
You know it, even if you don’t know if you believe in it, nothing else could explain it. The familiarity, the intensity, the contradictory complexity, the thick bubbling over of lava and water in the room when you’re together. What you have is just too much to be contained in one small life.
The last time I shared a life with my future partner, we grew old together in Pangea. It’s been that long since we’ve seen each other in bodies. Was since before the land was split in sevens. We didn’t even know the meaning of the word break-up back then.
I was the Waterfall, and my partner, the Volcano. That’s why I know my partner has a temper like I’m a moody Scorpio Rising cry baby because they are Holy Rage like I am Holy Grief because that fire is in me, and my water flows through them.
Wait, wait, wait. Hold up. I can hear all y’all right now. The Ancestors said you’d meet your partner on March 17th 2021. But it’s 2023 and you guys haven’t met yet! And, did Rahel die on May 22nd ? No she didn’t. So what gives?? Is this all a lie?? What about the TRUST, Shaunga, the TRUST??
Look. At first I said the same thing. Ancestors give me this epic message. March 17 of that year rolls through. Nothing happens. May 22nd. Nothing happens. I was like: Damn. Maybe I can’t trust my intuition! Or maybe the Universe doesn’t trust me?
Turns out, none of this is about Trust afterall, it’s about Multiverse Philosophy Lesson #3: STRETCHING TIME.
[sounds of water]
Okay, let me break down this concept of Stretching Time. We all know that time isn’t a fixed entity. It’s a colonial concept that time is solely linear. Like a straight line from A to B, as if our lives are just dots like facts that can’t be changed.
Time is so much more than that. It’s fluid, malleable, circular, multi-layered. The reason it’s so important to detach from an outcome in magic is because we have free will. We are co-creators of life every step of the way. The Universe sees us as active participants, not objects that she does things to. She can’t give you what you want, unless you choose to make it with her every day.
That means as Time Keepers, as magicians, healers, and alchemists, we have the power to slow time down, to speed it up, to stop it, to move it, to stretch it.
[water sounds fade out]
In Spring 2019, I wrote the full script of my current play in development, called PLUTO. This play was written in dedication to my personal relationships with the planets and my love of conversing directly with them.
FYI, the Giant Queen SpiderWoman that you met in the last episode
Spider Woman: “Youuuuuu. [crawling noises]
…is actually a character from this play. Immediately after I finished writing the script in 2019, I felt the sovereign presence of my partner’s energy for the first time (I spoke more about THAT in episode six.)
The following summer I got all these messages from readers and psychics and my own intuition that told me: “You might just meet someone special this coming fall, that energy is coming.”
But we didn’t meet in 2019.
See, if we took time as a line and connected point A and point B… All we would have to do is walk a few steps forward to meet each other in the middle. It wouldn’t take that long.
But what if, instead, you opened a hole in the ground. Or rather, the Earth opened up and took you down with it.
Instead of walking straight from A to B, from point A you would go down – deep, deep, down, underground, underwater…then come all the way back to the surface up to the point B. You end up in the same place. But it takes longer.
That’s what it means to Stretch Time. The deeper you go, the longer it takes.
In 2019, my partner and I had the chance to meet in person, but the Earth took us into a hole in the ground instead. We’ve both been in this same hole, it’s just really big and our paths never crossed. Still, our spidey senses are so strong, that we can communicate with each other clearly while we’re down here.
[sounds of fire]
In the hole I was tasked to end generational cycles of Time Loops, and reckon with the complete physical depletion, the floods of overwhelm and isolation of all the mothers in my lineage.
My partner was ending Time Loops of great pain in their father’s lineage, the spiritual despair, the wildfire rage that results from complete loss of ceremony.
[sounds of fire end]
In 2021, our shoulders came real close to brushing. But our Ancestors pushed us apart. They knew that if I heard my partner’s voice, and if my partner heard mine – we’d be done for. We would recognize each other immediately, and we’d fall in love.
If we fell in love while we were in the underworld of our respective mothers and fathers, with all those wounds kicked up to the surface so that we could slay them…damn.
Do you know how dangerous that is? For water and fire to come together in the wrong moment?
You do you think would win in a fight? Grief or Rage?
[the ground rumbles]
I bet you’d say rage, right?
That’s funny, Grief says.
Grief: “Give me a big enough tidal wave, and I’ll demolish your forest fire.”
Rage: “Oh yeah? Come close enough to the sun, and I’ll evaporate your tidal wave.”
Grief: “Oh, okay. And how well do you think your sun will do when he meets my Black Hole.”
[ground stops rumbling]
Grief: “I’ll devour you. I made you.”
Who would win in a fight? It doesn’t matter. Thank Goddess, we’ll never have to find out. We didn’t come here for that, not this time.
Going deeper often feels like you’re going backwards, even if you’re moving forward. You willingly venture into those Time Loops, and you think: Why am I back here again? I thought I finished this. I thought I healed this. What will it take to break out of here, for good?
I remember sitting with my Dad in his hospital room, maybe a month or so before he died in 2016. It was a rare and welcome moment of quiet, just him and me, in between bustles of Bengali community chaos coming in and out of the room. I was sitting in a chair across from his bed. He was looking out the window, lost in thought. He looked concerned, as if working through an old worn-out puzzle that he’s been trying to solve for years.
In season six of Buffy – big spoiler alert – Buffy has recently returned from the dead. She is struggling to be alive again, as one often is in this situation. Giles, her father figure is trying desperately to help her cope and survive through mundane life stuff that is overwhelmingly umanagable for Buffy in these circumstances.
Partway through the season, Giles comes to the conclusion that maybe he’s hurting her more than helping. Maybe the best thing that he can do for her at this moment is leave. Let her figure things out on her own. So he does.
Now, since the era of Buffy podcasts, there’s been a lot of critique of Giles in this moment, and his choice to leave Buffy, and rightfully so. It plays into this idea of ‘tough love’ like, people who are struggling should just be left to toughen up and figure it all out, and the more you can do that without community or support, the stronger you are. That is obviously a narrative grounded in colonization and patriarchy.
The way the story arc is written does play into that harmful narrative, and also doubles down on the injustice experienced by all Slayers that result in their ongoing isolation.
Season six Buffy is struggling with her mental health. Her friends and father figure abandon her in many ways, contributing to this generational problem we talked about last episode: that Slayers don’t have people around them who have the capacity to share and hold their realities.
All that said, in the musical episode Once More With Feeling, Giles sings a song called Standing in the Way, which reveals his inner conflict about whether he should stay or go.
And damn, that song hits right in the heartbeat.
“I wish I could lay your arms down and let you rest at last
wish I could slay your demons, but now that time has passed
wish I could stay, your stalwart standing fast
but I’m standing in the way”
The song hits me because I was watching my Dad stare out the window, tryna work out this complex multiverse math problem, this astro-physics equation, and no matter how hard he tried to dig those numbers from the ground, he just couldn’t get it to balance.
I was watching him and I clocked it when all of that changed. The shift was subtle but clear. I didn’t know what he was looking at. Was it a tree, or a sun beam, or an invisible lake in the distance.
But I saw it: his face softened. In place of concern, came understanding. If you asked me, I would call it some kind of peace. He nodded his head ever so slightly, then closed his eyes, continuing to breathe through the pain.
The hardest thing about parenting might be what it takes to discern when to step in and when to back off. And you have to make a million of those decisions every day.
I was with my Dad when he went from A to B in a few short minutes. From stuck in an unsolvable puzzle to peace and understanding. And I saw the deep stretching of time in between A to B that lasted for a lot longer than that. I heard Giles’ song in the middle of it. Echoing through a massive hole in the ground, healing the land.
When my Dad was sick he kept telling us that we had to find a way to break the cycle of pain. He was talking about the cancer, and the excruciating flares that came with it, but I knew that’s not all that he meant.
He was in his own hole in the ground, and one day he looked around and said: There’s nothing more for me to fix down here. I’ve done everything that I can. I don’t know, maybe when he looked out the window, he saw a ladder.
My Dad thought: if leaving is the my best thing for my family, then I’ll do it. If I hold myself back to stay here beyond my time, I will inevitably hold them back too. That’s Universal Law. That’s Astro-Physics. I’m not helpless. I can break the cycle.
Cradled in Silence, I heard that entire conversation my Dad had with the Universe. I said to him without speaking: I trust you. Leave when it’s right for you. I’ll continue the rest down here.
Six-Seven years later I would hit the same impossible unresolvable multiverse math equation, but from the other direction, the inverted position. This time I was the parent, and the ones leaving were my children, my sun, and my world.
[music: “As Time Passes”]
Our animal companions are masters of holding the delicate and ferocious balance of knowing when to step in and when to leave. They enter life as Masters of this. With the magical alchemical fruition, the majesty of patience and courage. Never hesitating, never forcing. Our Animals make the most out of every luscious drop of time they have, and then they leave, not a minute too soon or too late.
Even though, I have to admit, after Rahel died, Estha and I Stretched Time quite a bit. There are many times in that last year that Estha probably should have left, but he didn’t. For no other reason other than, why not kick back and shoot the shit, just a little while longer?
I remember asking our animal communicator, Julie, how will I know when it’s time to make that decision? To let him go?
Julie said: “Estha is showing me your hands reached out in front of you.”
I look down and see 5 block letters, physical, visceral, blood pumping in my palms.
Julie: “Estha says that he puts his full TRUST in your hands.”
Rewind to one year earlier – a few months after Rahel transitioned, I finished writing a book called Let Loss Make You Warm. The day it launched, I went to visit my favourite trees. I poured water on their roots and I heard myself say out loud: “Thank you so much for helping me write this book. It is truly, one of the greatest loves of my life.”
The date of that launch was March 17th.
Multiverse Philosophy Lesson Number #4: Numbers are Heart Beats
On January 21st, 2022, Rahel made it clear to me that she needed to leave, and that’s the day I made peace with the hardest decision of my life.
We scheduled her appointment a few days later on January 24th.
Months later I was going through all our vet records. I saw Rahel had an emergency trip to the vet on January 24th 2019. Then I remembered way back in 2012, there was one day that she had a unexpected health crisis, out of nowhere, just for one night, then she was fine for years after that. I looked up the date of that night in 2012, and sure enough, it was January 24th.
[sounds of a heartbeat]
January 24th 2016 is the date my Dad was admitted to the hospital, and he stayed there until his transition in May.
Time isn’t linear, it’s circular, it’s spiral, it’s a whole damn world. Numbers are powerful. They are alive. They echo, they reverberate. We feel them in our bodies like a heartbeat.
[sounds of a faster heartbeat]
Look, January 24th 2003 was the day of my first ever break up, from my first ever goofy-ass relationship, and I don’t know why the fuck I remember that, why, at the time, I clocked the date, except that I do know. I felt that heartbeat. The same number 20 years later pumped its blood, dating all the way back Pangea’s split.
And you know what? When I was looking through my diaries in order to write this podcast episode, I went back to that day in 2021 that I sat at my altar and received a message from an Ancestor that told me that date that Rahel was going to leave. At the top of that journal entry, guess what the date was?
[sounds of water]
Come back with me to present time. A few months ago I went on a road trip with my friend. At some point during the drive she said: “Oh hey, you know what I want to tell you about this person. I don’t know them, but they’re like a friend of a friend…”
Then she went on to describe someone who had pretty much all the same qualities that I have seen and felt about my partner. I was listening to her talk and I was just like:
“OH YEAH OKAY THAT’S COOL”
Then my friend says: “Oh and also, they live at the corner of Tulip and Hawthorne.”
And I was like: “….What?”
Motherfuckers, I LIVE AT THE CORNER OF TULIP AND HAWTHORNE.
Okay that’s not actually the name of my current intersection, cuz like I’m not about to announce to yall where I live on a podcast, but it was the same intersection as me…and it’s like a pretty busy place in the city like, a lot of people could live around here and never meet but ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME YOU’RE SERIOUSLY TELLING ME THIS MOFO HAS BEEN LIVING NEXT TO ME THIS ENTIRE TIME???
I get home after the road trip and I’m like: OKAY OKAY OKAY. Let me not jump to a dramatic amount conclusions like Patrick Chan Nathen Chen quadruple toe, flip, loop, lutz, all in the same 4 minute and 22 second figure skating program.
Let me just sit with this at an my Altar for a second. So I meditate. I clear my head, let go of all expectations. I have no agenda. I connect with this person in the spirit realm who is a real live person who exists somewhere out in the world, apparently right next door to me. I ask for their consent of course, I say, are you open to communicating with me? They say yes.
I say: “Tell me something about yourself.”
I listen. First I hear…a waterfall. Then…ducks quacking. Then I see…a volcano. Then I see a human…who morphs into a Giant Spider.
Oh, and did I mention the date? It was May 22nd.
[music: Phoenix Rising looping]
What happens in the locker room between the 2nd and 3rd periods of Mighty Ducks 2, might be one of the cheesiest scenes in all of TV but I fucking love it. Coach Gordon Bombay, the Minnesota Miracle Man, calls upon each and every player on the team, and he asks them to stand up, say their full names and where they’re from. Then they chant together, uniting their voices in a chorus: DUCKS FLY TOGETHER.
What would happen if everyone who loves our planet did the same? Gather together in ceremony, with the strength of our Ancestors and Animals: claim your lineage, claim your full self, claim your love of the game, and rise. It’s the end of the 2nd period and we’re losing 14 to 2. What would it take for us to rally into triumph and tip the scale in the other direction?
[music moves forward]
Maybe patience and courage. Perfect precision. Never hesitating, never forcing. Ferocity with no trace of desparation. Peaceful Aggression. Silence that does not rush the rests in between the notes of a symphony.
14 to 2 huh? It’s happened before, why not again? But it doesn’t matter what I think. Only what you believe.
Time Keepers don’t predict death, except for when we do. 200 million years ago, in other words, 1 Galactic Year Ago, her heart broke, but it birthed new life.
Everything lives and dies, including land, including our Sun. Astrologers see this, it’s a clear equation, it’s math.
In about 12 Galactic Years – that’s 200 million times 12 – not only will there be no life on Earth, our planet will show no sign that it ever supported life. 500 Galactic Years from now, the Universe will have expanded so much that all our surrounding galaxies will have disappeared into cosmic light.
How does that make you feel? To know this truth, hiding in plain sight? That not only will we be gone, there will no evidence that we were ever here.
I don’t know about you but…it changes me.
If past lives are true that means for anyone you’ve held close, you’ve said goodbye before too. You’ve lost each other before. You packed up while the other clung, or you chased while they ran.
But some love sits in my heart unbroken, still beating, and it doesn’t matter the time, doesn’t matter the story. Every time we meet, we stay.
[music moves forward]
It’s really something isn’t it? To know that holding you while you let go of your body wasn’t the first time we’ve done that? And that someone I haven’t even met is a beloved that I’ve already lost.
Does that change you?
At some point there will be no trace of us, but we are the ones who remember. We are the ones who know it now.
Does that change you?
If death gives you exact dates, does it matter where those numbers fall if your heartbeat is louder than that? If you remember the miracle of here and now is never too soon or too late.
Does it change how many risks you will take or what defenses you’ll let dissolve? Does it change how afraid you are? How free you are to live?
[music takes us out]