Sunday, December 1, 2013
Sunday, November 3, 2013
Friday, October 18, 2013
A woman, a dog and a walnut tree, the more you beat them the better they be. (?) ---Thomas Fuller (a churchman and historian)
Tuesday, October 1, 2013
Thursday, August 29, 2013
Sunday, July 7, 2013
So, her giving will go on...not just in our hearts.
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
“For whatever we lose (like a you or a me), It’s always our self we find in the sea.” – e.e. Cummings
I’m not a science fiction kinda person. But I remember somewhere in a television show or a movie there was a person who appeared in a hologram kinda thingy. I always think it would be cool if God appeared to us like that. Cause I have so much swimming around in my head. That’s how it is when I’m “tripping.” Tripping on Marco Island this week…and even though George and I have brought a teen and a five year old along, I still have too much time to think. Probably more than usual. At home I can stay so busy I can’t make stops at the shelves in my mind where things are stored. But when I’m tripping…and it’s raining…and exhaustion makes me slow down I tend to pull the dusty boxes off the shelves and rifle through them enough just to stir up the cobwebs and create chaos.
George needs his sleep for his adventure coming up so I crawled out of bed as not to disturb him. It’s too early for the seasoned sleeper to arise especially while on vacation. So, I got the coffee brewing and decided to get some of these thoughts on paper. While watching it rain…from the fifth floor of the condo overlooking the vastness of sea. I want to settle some things before the younguns drag out of bed, before George texts me and requests his coffee. I set up on the balcony with everything I think I will need to complete this task, returning to the kitchen for the coffee.
What I found when I returned was a sight that made me squeal with delight…and I ran back inside and got my camera. Stretched across the ocean in bright array was a double rainbow. You could see it from one side of the balcony to the other. Like it was framed just for my viewing. The full rainbow was sitting like a hologram on the waves. I had never seen any rainbow like it. Its colors were brilliant. The bow had precise definition. The movement of the waves under the end of the rainbow gave such holographic imagery. I had that wondermous feeling…I was where I am supposed to be.
To some readers you may think, “You are on a beachside vacation, of course you are where you are supposed to be.” It’s not that easily decided in my complicated mind. I have to have holographic images, voices from heaven and signs to show me the way. There has been great guilt lingering in my mind as my granny passed only three weeks ago to this day.
And here I am. On the beach. Creating memories with George and two of my grandchildren. It seems terribly wrong in my head. Like her passing wasn’t honored. Like I went on with my life and losing her was trivial. And to leave Aunt Juanita at home alone after her sister had passed…and then her 19 year old cat…seemed insensitive and uncaring.
But seeing the rainbow in its holographic state…sends a wave of confusion to my way of thinking. What if…the All Knowing, seeing that Granny would pass on June 11th, after three long months of what seems like torture in my thinking, in which I would try with all my power to prevent these torturous days…what if All Knowing wanted to allow me a regrouping time after He took her from the pain and torture? What if He wanted me where I am right at this moment…
In early October of 2012, after picking Emily up from her mother we headed to the 100 Acre Wood. We talked about so many things as we always do and then it got quiet. As any experienced parent/grandparent does when it’s quiet you always make sure all is okay. I turned to look at her in the back seat. She was deep in thought. So, I asked…”Whatcha thinking about girl?” Her response was one I’ve told many times as it made an impression in my mind, as if I took video of the conversation. Her sweet little voice, her matter of fact manner, her simple desire exposed to her Mimi. "You know Mimi; I have never been to the beach. I haven't kicked and screamed. I haven’t cried and threw fits. I've just been very patient." Yes, in her little Shirley Temple voice, with her “r” and “v” sounding like “w” and “b” I thought my heart would melt. I told her right then I would see what I could do about that. To make sure before she’s six that she would see the ocean.
On October 27th, a friend posted at 11:27 “Hey There Friends -We have a FL timeshare ON the beach that we cannot use 6/13.I am contacting a few friends to see who may be interested. It will be first come, first serve. It is June 28, 2013 - July 5, 2013.” At 11:44 I responded, “I’ll take it.” I remember it well, as George was with me and he thought I was nuts for only thinking about it in such a short time. Just remembering that moment makes me smile.
Going back to 2000, the year after Silas was born, I had him with me at one of Scarlet’s family get togethers. One of my not so pleasant memories. Granny and Aunt Juanita was there. His smiling little face so precious to me. He loved me so and I him. I introduced him as my grandson to Granny. She immediately said, “He is not your grandson. When Craig has children then you will have a grandchild.” Ah, I thought, tell Silas I am not his Mimi…I may not be his Mimi by blood, but I am his Mimi by heart…and that is a stronger love than any can offer.
And here I am…fulfilling a grandchild’s dream, Craig’s daughter to be exact, making memories with her and my oldest grandchild, Silas…while wrapped up in thought of my Grandmother. I tried to have all the grandkiddos travel with me…but these two, Silas and Emily were the only ones that could. In October 2012, Granny was living with Aunt Juanita. I had no indication of what was to come. She went into the nursing home on March 13th 2013 National Butterfly Day…As the time came near for this vacation week, Melanie who was supposed to meet me here in Florida, decided she could stay at my house and care for Granny instead while I was out of town. But Granny was called home before then. Melanie’s vacation days used for funeral leave instead.
So here I am…missing my granny…enjoying my role as a granny…in Florida, where Granny loved to travel, on Marco Island where there are butterfly gardens…where God speaks to me through a holographic rainbow.
Where the sun is shining on the clutter in my head...
Sunday, June 16, 2013
Friday, June 14, 2013
Friday, May 10, 2013
who erase holes in math workbooks,
who can never find their shoes.
who can't bound down the street in a new pair of sneakers,
who never "counted potatoes,"
who are born in places where we wouldn't be caught dead,
who never go to the circus,
who live in an X-rated world.
Who sleep with the cat and bury goldfish,
Who hug us in a hurry and forget their lunch money,
Who squeeze toothpaste all over the sink,
Who slurp their soup.
who have no safe blanket to drag behind them,
who watch their parents watch them die,
who can't find any bread to steal,
who don't have any rooms to clean up,
whose pictures aren't on anybody's dresser,
whose monsters are real.
who throw tantrums in the grocery store and pick at their food,
who like ghost stories,
who shove dirty clothes under the bed,
and never rinse out the tub,
who get visits from the tooth fairy,
who don't like to be kissed in front of the carpool,
who squirm in church or temple and scream in the phone,
whose tears we sometimes laugh at
and whose smiles can make us cry.
who will eat anything,
who have never seen a dentist,
who aren't spoiled by anybody,
who go to bed hungry and cry themselves to sleep,
who live and move, but have no being.
and for those who must,
for those we never give up on
and for those who don't get a second chance.
For those we smother…
and for those who will grab the hand of anybody
kind enough to offer it.
Sunday, March 31, 2013
Sunday, March 17, 2013
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
"Every creature on earth has approximately two billion heartbeats to spend in a lifetime. You can spend them slowly, like a tortoise, and live to be two hundred years old, or you can spend them fast, like a hummingbird, and live to be two years old." Brian Doyle "Joyas Voladoras"
I had never read before. But just that clip was profound to me...I was thinking...Yep, you need a shell of protection to live to be two hundred years old...God knew what he was doing for sure....
Then David commented:
"You can brick up your heart as stout and tight and hard and cold and impregnable as you possibly can and down it comes in an instant, felled by a woman's second glance, a child's apple breath, the shatter of glass in the road, the words "I have something to tell you," a cat with a broken spine dragging itself into the forest to die, the brush of your mother's papery ancient hand in the thicket of your hair, the memory of your father's voice early in the morning echoing from the kitchen where he is making pancakes for his children."
And I began to think...I need to read this in it's entirety. Now that I have, I want you to read it also.
FROM THE AMERICAN SCHOLAR
Each one visits a thousand flowers a day. They can dive at sixty miles an hour. They can fly backward. They can fly more than five hundred miles without pausing to rest. But when they rest they come close to death: on frigid nights, or when they are starving, they retreat into torpor, their metabolic rate slowing to a fifteenth of their normal sleep rate, their hearts sludging nearly to a halt, barely beating, and if they are not soon warmed, if they do not soon find that which is sweet, their hearts grow cold, and they cease to be. Consider for a moment those hummingbirds who did not open their eyes again today, this very day, in the Americas: bearded helmetcrests and booted racket-tails, violet-tailed sylphs and violet-capped woodnymphs, crimson topazes and purple-crowned fairies, red-tailed comets and amethyst woodstars, rainbow-bearded thornbills and glittering-bellied emeralds, velvet-purple coronets and golden-bellied star-frontlets, fiery-tailed awlbills and Andean hillstars, spatuletails and pufflegs, each the most amazing thing you have never seen, each thunderous wild heart the size of an infant's fingernail, each mad heart silent, a brilliant music stilled.
Hummingbirds, like all flying birds but more so, have incredible enormous immense ferocious metabolisms. To drive those metabolisms they have racecar hearts that eat oxygen at an eye-popping rate. Their hearts are built of thinner, leaner fibers than ours. their arteries are stiffer and more taut. They have more mitochondria in their heart muscles—anything to gulp more oxygen. Their hearts are stripped to the skin for the war against gravity and inertia, the mad search for food, the insane idea of flight. The price of their ambition is a life closer to death; they suffer more heart attacks and aneurysms and ruptures than any other living creature. It's expensive to fly. You burn out. You fry the machine. You melt the engine. Every creature on earth has approximately two billion heartbeats to spend in a lifetime. You can spend them slowly, like a tortoise and live to be two hundred years old, or you can spend them fast, like a hummingbird, and live to be two years old.
The biggest heart in the world is inside the blue whale. It weighs more than seven tons. It's as big as a room. It IS a room, with four chambers. A child could walk around it, head high, bending only to step through the valves. The valves are as big as the swinging doors in a saloon. This house of a heart drives a creature a hundred feet long. When this creature is born it is twenty feet long and weighs four tons. It is waaaaay bigger than your car. It drinks a hundred gallons of milk from its mama every day and gains two hundred pounds a day, and when it is seven or eight years old it endures an unimaginable puberty and then it essentially disappears from human ken, for next to nothing is known of the the mating habits, travel patterns, diet, social life, language, social structure, diseases, spirituality, wars, stories, despairs and arts of the blue whale. There are perhaps ten thousand blue whales in the world, living in every ocean on earth, and of the largest animal who ever lived we know nearly nothing. But we know this: the animals with the largest hearts in the world generally travel in pairs, and their penetrating moaning cries, their piercing yearning tongue, can be heard underwater for miles and miles.
Mammals and birds have hearts with four chambers. Reptiles and turtles have hearts with three chambers. Fish have hearts with two chambers. Insects and mollusks have hearts with one chamber. Worms have hearts with one chamber, although they may have as many as eleven single-chambered hearts. Unicellular bacteria have no hearts at all; but even they have fluid eternally in motion, washing from one side of the cell to the other, swirling and whirling. No living being is without interior liquid motion. We all churn inside.
So much held in a heart in a lifetime. So much held in a heart in a day, an hour, a moment. We are utterly open with no one in the end—not mother and father, not wife or husband, not lover, not child, not friend. We open windows to each but we live alone in the house of the heart. Perhaps we must. Perhaps we could not bear to be so naked, for fear of a constantly harrowed heart. When young we think there will come one person who will savor and sustain us always; when we are older we know this is the dream of a child, that all hearts finally are bruised and scarred, scored and torn, repaired by time and will, patched by force of character, yet fragile and rickety forevermore, no matter how ferocious the defense and how many bricks you bring to the wall. You can brick up your heart as stout and tight and hard and cold and impregnable as you possibly can and down it comes in an instant, felled by a woman's second glance, a child's apple breath, the shatter of glass in the road, the words "I have something to tell you," a cat with a broken spine dragging itself into the forest to die, the brush of your mother's papery ancient hand in the thicket of your hair, the memory of your father's voice early in the morning echoing from the kitchen where he is making pancakes for his children.
›› Brian Doyle
I was moved to tears as I read, "But we know this: the animals with the largest hearts in the world generally travel in pairs, and their penetrating moaning cries, their piercing yearning tongue, can be heard underwater for miles and miles."
Traveling in pairs...moaning to each other as they move slowly across their watery world.
It yanks my heartstrings.