I’m doing something unusual right now, or at least something I haven’t done since I was a kid who would sit outside after the sun set and watch the stars appear with her godmother. I’m taking note of every sound I hear both near and far. Why? It’s just a fun and relaxing thing to do — listening to the world around me.
As I write this, I hear:
- Music coming from a festival going on near me
- An excited dog barking in the distance
- A motorcycle revving on the major road a couple of streets over
- Clanging of a neighbor’s silverware (just washed dishes?)
- Gentle drone of traffic
- An ambulance
- Murmur of a large group gathered at the bar across the way
- Squealing brakes of a city bus or truck
- A screaming cat
- The gentle ding-ding-ding of my metal wind chime
- Laughing kids
- The hum of my refrigerator
- A train blaring its horn
- A neighbor playing the piano
It all makes up the sound of existence.
Three days before New Year’s Eve, I decided to make a trek to a town ~3.5 hours from home to visit the Shrine to Don Pedrito. I had never heard of him until ~ a week prior to the trip. I was in a local grocery store picking up a few things. A couple of saint candles were on my list. I searched and searched and didn’t see the candles where they’re normally placed. I asked a store worker and he went to the same place I had searched then asked a manager about them. The manager said they no longer carry them. No explanation. I’m not sure who looked more shocked, me or the worker. I paid for the items I did grab and left. I decided to go to another store in the same chain to see if I could find the candles I was seeking.
Find them, I did. I picked up one of La Virgen de Guadalupe and one of La Virgen de San Juan. I also randomly picked up another candle because I thought it looked interesting. When I got home and took them out of the bag, I looked more closely at the random candle. It was of Don Pedrito. Underneath his name it reads “Vida y Salud” (Life and Health). This has been a reoccurring thought for me over the last few weeks. I decided to look into who he was. It turns out he was a curandero in South Texas! Yes, he’s in his grave and has been there for many, many moons, but I am of the mindset that some people have a way of reaching out and touching the world from the beyond. No, not in a creepy, horror story way, but in a more divine manner.
I immediately decided that I would try to find his resting place and see what he was about.
I drove down early that Saturday morning. Found the place without any difficulties. As I parked out front, I thought the shrine, which is surrounded by a small cemetery wasn’t much to look at. I opened the door and was met by a wonderful wall of energy that I can’t begin to describe. Right in front of me was the Virgin Mary standing on an altar with Jesus on the cross on the wall behind her. To her left was La Virgin de San Juan and to my immediate left was a statue of Don Pedrito and his grave surrounded by flowers. It took me a few minutes to overcome the initial energy shock/surprise to walk all the way in. I said a couple of prayers/paid my respects at the three altars and placed a few petitions on a prayer wall for myself, family, and a couple of friends having a difficult time. I sat in there for a while and realized how amazingly quiet the space was. I’ve only experienced that level of quiet/peace three other times. It was mind blowing! I didn’t want to leave. They just need to have a restroom and a little kitchenette for me and I could seriously live there!
I left the shrine after a while to drive back home. I was in the calmest state I’ve been in in eons! I’ve also noticed that I’ve been experiencing the same inner calm and peace since then. Even my myasthenia gravis symptoms have eased up a bit. No one has set me off since then. I’ve encountered several situations where I could’ve gone off and strangled a few people since that day–especially at work. My hands have not yet met any deserving necks! Perhaps I should visit Don Pedrito and Mother Mary once a month for a little calming session.
No desire to punch anyone in the face so far this year. 🙂