God peeks through

sunset

There is no doubt that this is one of those times in life that feels like a struggle.  Part of the struggle is indeed my own.  I feel pulled in bazillion different directions and like no matter which direction I run in, I am going the wrong way.  Part of the struggle is also watching a loved with Alzheimer’s disintegrate slowly day by day and it is truly agonizing.  It is hard on our whole family, and Moira particularly struggles with it.

A few weeks ago we were at the library, and saw a sign up for a workshop on arm knitting an infinity scarf.  “Let’s do this Moira!”  I pictured bonding time, laughter, and a beautiful keepsake to take home.  We signed up.  We ventured into the Yarn Barn and bought expensive and beautiful yarn.  We giggled and looked forward to our evening out.

You know how sometimes the picture in your head and reality are different?  This was one of those times.   Arm knitting is complicated, involves many knots, stitches, and intricate hand gestures.  I could tell by the look on Moira’s face that the hand gestures she was thinking of were not the kind needed for knitting.  Someone at the table said, “It’s like math, confusing and hard to understand until you finally get it.”  That’s all we needed to hear.  The M word drove us out.  Moira untangled herself, threw her balls of soft, beautiful yarn in a bag and we fled the library.

To salvage the evening, I offered a Dunkins hot chocolate and a cruller.  On our way, we saw the most amazing sunset.  We pulled over and sat quietly looking at the sky, the blend of the dark and the light, the clouds and clear, brilliant, fading twilight.  If we hadn’t left the library, we would have missed that mystical moment together.

We got our hot chocolate.  We laughed, we bonded, and we even came home with a keepsake photo.  You know how sometimes the picture in your head and reality are different?  This was one of those times.   And reality turned out to be so much better.

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The Whale that swallowed me

wailtail  So, not quite over, my LOA.  Leave of Absence.  Writing does take effort and energy and it is true that my effort and energy has been swallowed by other things… like the whale that swollowed Jonah.  It has been far longer than 3 days and 3 nights, but I feel like I am finally coming out of the whale’s belly and into the light.

So much depends on how we see things.  What we focus on.  Last night I was sharing with a few ladies and heard myself lamenting over the lack of help and support I am getting with some things… and then after listening for a bit, my mind spun my problem 180 and instead of seeing the lack of help, I saw all those who were helping.  Coming “out of the whale” means being able to see clearly and also knowing what to look at.  Why am I looking at the shadows instead of the light?  Sometimes I still feel the cool dampness of the being in that belly; it clings to me.  It does not want to let go.  I am weary.  I am filled with inertia.

Inertia can be heavy, feel like a weight that stops you from doing what matters.  What matters?  Driving home yesterday in the car the kids were talking about what names they would choose for themselves if they could pick.  Names like Toby, Kate, and Parker were tossed about.  And then Maggie says, out of the blue, her clear voice like a wave that giggles as it rolls on, “Sam’s name can be Gezpacho!”

And we all laugh.  I’ll follow that glow.  I see the light.