I’d like to introduce Lucy, Michael’s 10-year old Yorkie (by Michael I mean Michael Joly, who created the Tone Therapy System). Three days ago we had to put Lucy down rather unexpectedly, after complications developed during a surgery to retrieve tissue for a biopsy. She was a soft, golden, fun and friendly character and a deeply intelligent dog, able to respond to the names of many people, and make her thoughts and opinions known. She was a great communicator. And she has been with us every step of the way in developing the n.o.w. Tone Therapy System.
What a strange thing it is when someone important, known and beloved, leaves. It is just strange strange strange. The pain of grief is its own crazy thing: it comes in as surprising shocks when you repeatedly discover that a certain someone no longer exists. Lucy is not here anymore to receive her special treat at night, she is just not here. The waves of feeling come and they recede, but there is nothing routine or practiced about this sort of sadness. No matter the belief systems, the faith and acceptance, or the comfort of a relationship that was a beautiful thing to experience, it just hits in ways that have no words—the utter gone-ness of a loved one makes the head spin and the tears hurt in a way that is different from all else.
Lucy adored Michael with all she had. I recall when he was first recording the Tones, I had to get creative to blockade her away from the room where he worked. It never made sense to her to be separated from him, and her joy in reconnecting—even after very short partings—was evident in her squeals and kisses. I was part of Lucy’s world for 5 years, and she and I had grown to love each other without question. But nobody was Michael to her—he completed life where she was concerned.
Michael rises early in the morning (I do not), and Lucy and he would listen to the Tone Therapy System together. She was a highly-strung individual, but would settle in to listen with contentment alongside Michael. It always seems to me that n.o.w., when played for its 3 minutes by ourselves within the environment, or when with others, creates a symbiosis; we not only connect to the moment, but we connect to that which is within the moment—if others are there listening with us, we sort of “blend” for that time. Lucy was a part of this kind of moment more than any other living being besides Michael; she heard the Tones a lot. Thousands of sessions. And so, when I listen now, I hear my way into my connection to her. What does that mean? It’s sort of like, I feel her within the Tones. But is that simply because she was around and listened with us to the Tones? Well…
No—it is not because Lucy listened to the Tones. It is because, by listening to the Tones myself, I find my way to the release of thoughts for a moment and sometimes more. And in that release, I connect, for that moment, with all that is. And in the moment of all that is, even that which appears to have passed is alive. The present moment ends up being the symbiosis of all, and so anything or anyone that “was,” ends up contained in the “is” of the moment—the moment when I transcend thought. The Tones are a huge leap into this kind of release. Whether you listen a thousand times, like Lucy, or one time, you can have the experience of connecting to All.
Using the Tones doesn’t take pain away. But it can in fact make pain a part of all that is not wrong in the Universe, and it reveals a pathway to peace. I don’t mean peace that is because nothing bad happens, I mean peace in the face of life’s complexities.
If those words make no sense, well, peace also makes no sense when you hold it up against everything that is chaos in our world, large and small. Yet, peace is so real that when you hit it you know you have found the Holy Grail, a thing that you cannot cling to no matter how you try, but is there to be found again and again. Peace, joy, kindness—these three life-changers are very interrelated and worthy of more blog space another time. For now, we’ll keep this blog to remembering Lucy. Her spirit resides in the n.o.w. Tone Therapy System, just as yours ALL do. All of us, together. Take a breath and listen for yourself HERE to begin experiencing your own connection to the Tones, to a release of thought, to peace.
Lucy, thank you. I love you. –Alene