Sunday, November 28, 2010

Stark Landscapes

Tell me about your despair, yours and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Mary Oliver

It was tough today talking to my mother. I could hear in her voice the beginnings of letting go. To be frank I've heard whispers of it in the past few weeks, but today it shouted loud and clear. I think the past months we were able to keep the reality of her approaching death hidden, because she tried so hard to be "normal". Right now I know intellectually what's coming having been there in my professional life, but emotionally I'm kind of numb.

Today I practiced harp, took a walk to look at Christmas lights and touched base with some friends. Did an hour of yoga practice. All routine things. I think routine is the touchstone by which we survive during times like these....

So saying I'll be leaning on routine and using my blog to help me get through the next weeks. And since it's been a tradition to do some holiday music at some point in this blog I'll start tonight...

Andreas Wollenweider, "The Holly and The Ivy":


Saturday, November 27, 2010

A View From....A Cold World

To do anything truly worth doing, I must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger, but jump in with gusto and scramble through as well as I can.
Og Mandino

It has been cold in Northern California this past week. In the early morning hours as I headed to the Jeep my shoulders would be hunched up in defense against the icy air and I found myself still so chilled even with the heater going, that I would pull over for an thawing hot drink.

It's been a couple of weeks too where I am shivering against the singular determination of life to bring change. Without going into detail, it is necessary to gain my clinical licensure in California so now I'm tip toeing through the land minds of application and if I clear that then passing two very difficult tests. My mom is declining. I'll be in Michigan in a little over two weeks to have the holidays with her and other members of my family. Overshadowing this is the knowledge it is her last. I hope it will be a good one.

It has also become necessary for me to prepare to move in the next 2-4 months. So I'm looking for a temporary place to stay as I don't know that I want to sign a year lease with all the change that is coming.

But I don't want to seem dismal, all of this is leading to something new and wonderful. I've traveled these roads in different forms before. I know the sign posts. Life is preparing me for change yet again and from previous experiencing I know though I feel somewhat frozen emotionally from the cold in my world, the thaw will come and blooming will occur.

Addendum: I spoke with my youngest sister this afternoon. She feels my mom is worsening rapidly. I'll call Hospice this week for an update. It may be selfish, but I'm hoping I don't have to leave until December 14th. We are going to be taking turns staying with her starting tomorrow so she won't be alone. That there tells me that things are changing....

Jonas Steur featuring Julie Thompson, "Cold Winds (Original Mix):

Saturday, November 6, 2010

From the Profound to the Profane



Life is like a movie-since there aren't any commercial breaks, you have to get up and go to the bathroom in the middle of it.

Garry Trudeau

Last night taught me you can keep your head in the clouds of philosophy and then real life brings you back with a thud. Let me elucidate. It was late and I was taking my nightly shower when suddenly I was getting a shower from below as well as above. Water was spraying up from the drain and I hear a weird noise from the toilet. It had also turned into a water fountain. My bathroom had become a Stephen King horror novel. I expected something to rise out of the bathroom sink to join the party, but that didn't occur although some ominous noises were coming from the area.

Have you ever tried to turn off water from a valve that hasn't been turned in years? Let's just say the rest of my night involved bathroom and water clean up, a plumber at two in the morning (little did I know that plumbers are like your local ER, always open for emergencies) and figuring out why it occurred in the first place. And the answer was roots in the city water lines...

So now I know bathroom problems are like a baby being born, they seem to like to come in the middle of the night. Ah well, my bathroom practical skills have grown and I found an oldie but goodie while I was perusing YouTube waiting for the plumber to finish his work. It seemed to fit the surreal/spacey feeling of having work done on your condo in the wee hours of the morning (did I mention skulking around the bushes with a flashlight looking for sewer and water lines, hoping you don't wake your neighbors up?).

Peter Schilling, "Major Tom (Coming Home):



Friday, November 5, 2010

Clouds on the Landscape of Life

Be thou the rainbow in the storms of life. The evening beam that smiles the clouds away, and tints tomorrow with prophetic ray.
Lord Byron

Clouds are an interesting metaphor for life. They can be used to symbolize great confusion and sadness or great beauty. Life has been a mix of both. The clouds of the last year have helped me delve deeper into the beauty and meaning of what I want my life to be. As I have parted them like a veil I have come to find within my self a core of strength that I didn't know I possessed.

The sunset of my mother's life has helped me to find a sunrise in mine. There is new beauty in old things....my career, my friendships etc. Yet I am finding horizons for tomorrow....

Once again my camera has helped me to peer at the clouds on the landscape of my life.

Fleetwood Mac, "Storms":



Monday, November 1, 2010

Celtic New Year

For magic to happen in your life, you must believe in magic.
Author Unknown

It's great when you belong to traditions in which you get to celebrate a New Year twice. So here's wishing the coming cycle of seasons is full of growth, magic and wisdom.

And my adopted National League Team (let's hope the Tigers never have to play them) won the World Series for the first time in 56 years tonight. How magical is that?

Van Morrison, "Celtic New Year":


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