Wednesday, August 6, 2014

From Poison to Medicine

A week or so ago, Joshua was shaving in our bathroom. All of a sudden he felt an electric shock in his foot, as if someone had inserted an electric needle. When he looked down, he saw a six-seven inch, giant centipede that had just bitten him on the toe. It was still attached when he literally catapulted himself five feet back. It hurt like a son of a We treated it with soap and water and he took a pain killer. But even so he had little electric shocks surging through his body all day long and his heart was pumping hard. We could see how the poisonous creatures could give an older person a heart attack or kill a dog. The strangest thing was that Joshua called me later from work, saying that he felt great; better than he had in a while.

That night, we looked up mythologies about centipedes and it was very enlightening. The centipede was treated in many cultures with great respect. In Egypt there was even a god named after it because of its power to eat and chase away all nasty insects. In a native story, the centipede had been flattened and lost his ability to walk. So it went to a Medicine Woman and got its legs sewn back on. A hundred of them to make sure it could move efficiently!


From our research we concluded that Joshua had gotten a shot of medicine from this strange creature. Ever since, Joshua has been moving around on "many little legs," and setting up his own business as we speak. While he might have consciously chosen a different totem animal, say an eagle, the centipede is what he got and he is researching tattoos to help him embody the gift this creature gave him.