After the Mary Magdalene Celebration 2017, I had 2 commitments in Puerto Rico for art exhibitions and left for the island on August 28th. Unfortunately, I was unable to come back before Hurricane María and ended up staying for half of October.
Even though I am now safely back, and all my family and friends have reported safely, processing this experience has been challenging. On one hand, I am glad I was there as I was able to accompany my mother during the hurricane and after, and we were lucky to be in a very safe place and a town that was not extremely affected. But, of course, seeing the devastation in other parts of the island, and the lack of hope for improvement considering the current economic, social and political situation, it is quite heartbreaking.
While in Puerto Rico, during the days without water, electricity, phone, internet and gasoline, my main refuge were books, paper books, and I am grateful that my mother had a library full of books I had not read yet. So I immersed myself in other worlds in order to make time pass a little faster in this one.
One of the books I read was Magdalene's Lost Legacy: Symbolic Numbers and the Sacred Union in Christianity by Margaret Starbird about gematria in the Bible and how it identifies Mary Magdalene as a person of importance, as the Bride of Christ, the representative of the Goddess in early Christian writings. The book focuses more on the theme of gematria in the Bible in general, rather than just Mary Magdalene. But it is an interesting and informative introduction to the topic. I had to read it in translation, which is always a little less satisfying than the original language.
I will add more about the book as soon as I find it! I brought it with me, but I seem to have lost it in the process of unpacking...
And like the book, I feel a little lost in New York, looking toward an experience without being able to do much or even say much. It is a similar feeling to waking up conscious in the hospital after a stem cell transplant and high dose chemotherapy. Calm after the storm, looking within for the lost feelings of trust in what was always there and no longer is. I have no choice but joke about it when my son asks: I have almost died many times, when I was born, when I was sick, when during this same trip we found a cow in the middle of the road 2 meters ahead in the darkness, and then when something got stuck in my throat a few days later, and the least I was about to die was when Hurricane María came. Bad joke, but true.
And now, here, back, I hold the Magdalene's hand in the hope of finding my way into the other side of this reality, in gratitude for all that is good and well, and full of life.