As I meditate, the vision of a clear mountain stream comes to me. Nestled in a forest, surrounded by evergreen trees miles above it, cool water moves across pebbles covered in a soft downy fuzz of green. The water is no more than six inches deep and the path it takes winds gently, curving in slight, undulating waves as it makes its way through the trees.
A large, preadolescent boy pads up on soft bare feet and stops at the water's edge. He is holding a discarded tree branch, about 2/3 his height and the width of his wrist and he begins poking at the pebbles on the bottom of the stream. Becoming bolder with each movement, he is soon stirring the water like the contents of a witch's cauldron, swirling rich, fertile mud up from beneath the rocks and clouding the clear stream with muck. Soggy, frayed leaves and pine needles catch in whirlpools and twist in with algae that has been freed from the pebbles it covers.
I cannot see the boy's face and am struck at how angry I am with him for disrupting this calm scene. I want to chase him away. I want the water to settle and be clear again. Suddenly I realize that, from my perspective, I can only be the stream. It is me he is mucking with. I am filled with debris and rotting organic material, moving in circles in an attempt to find a place to settle.
Much of the heavier, thicker objects will settle back, but just as much of the algae and mud are pushed slightly downstream to settle somewhere else - just out of my range of sight. I am seeing my own body's response to the detoxification I am going through. While I thought things were settled, it seems that many of these things I've held on to were simply lying dormant. Once stirred up, they momentarily cloud the water as much of them are washed away. In time, the stream will clear again and benefit from this cleaning out.