Well, not exactly. I’ve never been in the work force, in the sense of laboring as a wage slave at something that was not my passion. Instead, after raising a family and graduate school in philosophy, plus one stint teaching in an experimental college from which I was then fired as “too experimental,” I decided to study astrology. Why? Because I wondered how my life had gone so far “off.” Couldn’t understand it. I had done everything right, got all the prizes. But there I was, at age 32, dead broke, divorced from not only my husband but my children, and wondering what’s next. Well, I sure found out! Astrology, as a symbolic language that maps the unfolding of the soul’s purpose in this lifetime, became my lifeline. First for myself, and within three years, also for others.
I worked as a consultant in astrology from 1976 through 1996. At that point, the magazine I was publishing, Crone Chronicles: A Journal of Conscious Aging, began to demand so much of my time that I noticed that, for about six weeks prior to printing each quarterly issue, I would need to stop astrology and focus full-time on the magazine. And wouldn’t you know, for those six weeks, the calls for my astrological services would stop! Not that I let people know. Just that the atmosphere changed, so that my energy, since it was directed elsewhere, was no longer available for astrological consultations.
And then, like clockwork, as soon as I sent the new issue in to the printer, the calls for astrology would start up again! I could say that this surprised me, but it did not. I had long been accustomed to moving in sync with the flow of the universe. Since I was doing what I loved — both as editor and publisher of a magazine and as an astrological consultant — the universe conspired to help me do both. And since I needed to move from one to the other, every six weeks or so, it arranged for that, too.
In 2001, I stopped the magazine, and returned to astrology, more or less. But my husband Jeff and I were about to make a major move, and so my energy began to move, too. In 2002 we relocated to Bloomington, Indiana, so he could attend law school. Three months later, he died, of a heart attack. The next few years were spent getting used to my changed status, on all levels. In 2006 I published an award-winning book about my conscious grieving process: This Vast Being: A Voyage through Grief and Exaltation.
When Jeff died, he left me a legacy, which I have been busy spending down in a manner that befits the next step — in this case, to materialize my passions. Not that I knew what I was doing when I began. No. Looking back on it now, I realize it’s been an organic process, moving very slowly and deeply.
In 2007 I committed to taking the Permaculture Design Course. That led to buying the property next door, which had a sunny lawn, so that I could start a community garden. The garden grew not just plants, but community. Last year, we realized that we were now living in a village within a neighborhood, and set up a website to reflect that fact. www.greenacresvillage.org. Then, in December 2016, the final piece of contiguous property fell into my hands, after visioning for three years that it would. With the three properties now in hand, and a population of nine people (only three per house, because of zoning laws), the core of this intergenerational village is taking shape. Only in the past year or so, have we moved from continually visioning a changed “atmosphere” to actually living within our changed “culture.” We have arrived. At least on this material plane. There is much more to do to get the three-house village proper into shape materially, including completely redoing a second garage. In 1996, we turned the first garage into a greenhouse. Here it is yesterday, with seedlings ready to go in the ground and for sale to others.
By the way, this garage, in its original incarnation, was where my son Colin Cudmore, who had just arrived in Bloomington from the east coast, fashioned the first 300 Garden Towers, by hand, six years ago. It’s now manufactured in Indianapolis, has won many awards, and ships to six different countries. See Garden Tower Project.
So, to the point of this post: I am now approaching the finale; my seemingly endless start-up funds for the village are going to mostly run out by about the first of next year. So, by that time, we’re going to need to have invisible structures in place that will ensure its continuity through time — and after my own death. Much to accomplish this year!
Meanwhile, I’ve decided to “get back into astrology,” I mean professionally, charging people for my time. I’ve been doing astrology in the gift economy for the 15 years I’ve been in Bloomington. And while that’s somewhat satisfying, I do notice that people don’t take their own reading as seriously as they would were they to actually pay for it! Until we’re all very used to the abundance created when each of us gifts all of who we are to the world, we’re still going to need to make one-to-one exchanges. This comes as a disappointment to me, since I always want to jump ahead of the curve — and do, until I discover why I need to pull back, and do things “the old way” for awhile longer. And in this case, once again doing astrology as a professional consultant will help the cash flow in the village.
So here goes, Starting over, at the age of 74!
(Note: And see Consultations.)
If anyone wants an astrological reading from me, I’m available! Besides gaining insight into the path of your own life, you will also be helping Green Acres Village and Urban Farm to grow and thrive as one new template for suburbia in these critical times on Planet Earth.
Oh and BTW, and I can send you some of my new business cards, if you wish to distribute to others. Thanks!