I’ve always hated Autumn. Sure, it’s objectively the most scrapbookable season of Massachusetts, but something about it is so essentially painful for me. Not the departure from the summer’s promise of warm memories, not the reminder of decay and descent in the leaves, not the intolerable tricker-treaters that break silence in my neighborhood every October’s end. Rather, I resent Fall for being transitional, a liminal space. Today, like Autumn, I will leave a characterization of my work that has defined me for the past four weeks: ancient medicine. In doing so, I will open my research to the divine, the religious, the hyper-medical (if you will), something that has been on the back burner in all the words I’ve read and written over the past month. And while I have been collecting data and gathering understanding on Mary’s context, both medically and culturally, there is something so terrifying in departing the safety, objectivity, and criticizability Hippocratic treatises and Aristotelian philosophy. How can I enter into the life of this woman and tell her the reality of her rhetorical existence? How could I possibly be ready to confront the monument that is this mother? It’s that autumnal doubt. But as summer’s crops become winter’s sustenance, we must enter this next season of work in ​full confidence of our preparations.
​Un-timidly, let me introduce you to the second mother to many: The Virgin Mary.