A Springtime Walk

today’s photos by Patricia

The hummer buzzes close by sipping nectar. Bluebirds have taken residence in the wooden house on the split rail fence. The mockingbird proudly sits at the apex of the roof chittering happily every song it knows, which is many.

Springtime splendors overwhelm my senses with such joy; a basket of lilacs to fill the house with intoxicating aroma, lilies of the valley next in line for picking, an herb garden, new this year awaiting a good watering so that basil and parsley can germinate. A four pack called Scarborough Fair also awaits planting once any danger of frost has passed; parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme.

Simple earthy pleasures abound along with my blossoming spirit soaking up blooms, deer prancing in the meadow, and sunshine as wisps of clouds evaporate and heat radiates from clear blue skies. The dew wets my sneakers as meadow rounds are walked, bare feel inside them feeling the cool moisture. 

Mosaic butterflies hanging on the trees by the creek glow with a sparkle that shimmers, even the one I hated has now become a favorite. The other two in front glitter and sway on the branches as if alive.

Each day new pleasures await with an internal calmness that allows my being to enjoy them. 

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The Soul

photo by Patricia

Without conscious thought, my gut (soul?) has been driving me. One of many. Just one of many. I am but a speck in this vast world, one speck of millions, one speck of infinity.

The past has its ramifications, yes. There is that which will need attention and devoted care. Yes, it presents challenges others don’t face. Yet others face challenges just as severe, more severe.

The things that happened to me, are not me. It has taken decades to feel this way, to talk about these things without it hurting, to feel peaceful, joyful, contented and happy. To find peace in my marriage and with those closest to me, my sons. Because even in these relationships my insides roiled with need, mistrust and angst.

There are still upsets but they are better handled. After some pondering reaching into internal rooms that have opened great depths inside, others motives are better understood. Others are people too with needs and feelings just like me.

 

Niagara, Day 2

The curtains darkened the room pitch black and closed with Velcro for privacy. Wondering the time and if enough of it was spent sleeping, a chirping of birds was heard, then a crack of light filtered through the small slit in the drapes. Daring to peek at the clock it was 6 am, my usual wake time. 

Samuel sleeps at least two hours more than me regularly. Slipping on my clothes and taking tepid, weak coffee from the room’s coffeemaker, I hoped for stronger stuff in the lobby. It was raining. The umbrella tucked away in the trunk of the car had a bent handle but it would do. It was a warm rain and only gently falling.

Tossing the awful coffee, fresh brew was added to my cup. Walking down the hill to the falls it was quiet except for the kiosk’s balking out advertisements every ten feet about how wonderful the Niagara Skyline was, a tower taller than anything around it. Too bad such natural wonder is ruined by humans.

It began raining more. After a pleasant walk to the base of the hill there was a gazebo nestled in the park surrounded by bright tulips; the perfect spot to get out of the rain but still see the falls through the foggy mist. A clap of thunder made me pause. After a long settling rest, and the first noticeable shard of lightening, it was time to pad back up the hill, refill my coffee, and wait for Samuel to wake.

It is fun to travel for short trips but it makes me yearn for home where I feel the safest and most centered.

Niagara Falls

“We’re here! There, now I feel safe,” I exclaimed reaching for the car’s door handle.

We walk the short distance from the hotel to the falls. Finally some excitement building as the rush of the water thundered and the mist sprayed dampening our skin as along the gorge by the falls.

A favorite place to visit but getting there means dealing with some traffic. A small dose of anti-anxiety medication took off the edge. Because it was Monday and not a holiday all went well. 

 The most thrill for us both is just watching, listening, and staring at the endless wall of crashing water. It is so relaxing that it almost lulls me to sleep. Tomorrow we head home

 

 

MOTHER’S DAY

Cory & Shane

The search on Mother’s Day is not for accolades. The foremost feeling is gratitude for sons who are gifts to those around them and treasures for me. The world is a better place because of their existence.

My life had meaning and purpose due to them. Those two gave laughter and joy which often erupted from a dark soul, a place hardly heard from due to the ravages of childhood sexual abuse and numbness that creates.  

Their beings were pure light and lit my determination that their innocent glow would shine and never dim. Their beauty grew as they grew. These young men possess qualities and character that seemed to have vanished in modern times, rare and hard to find.

 

JOY

photo by Patricia

The hardness in my heart left no room for joy, or peace, or any kind of lasting contentment. The rage burning was not my doing, nor was the inability to know how to give it the salve needed to put out the blaze. The fire needed to speak. The family squelched that right. The family so desperately needed even if it was the source of the open, frizzling, scalding wound.

It wasn’t until over the age of fifty that facts came out of me where they had festered for decades, first as a little girl when no one came, then all the years hence where the traumas swirled. And she was like an ice box with an explosion inside.

Who will let her talk? Who will help her feel safe? And even in safety the bars of childhood silence lock her down. The filth and muddy tar within her was sludge and resisted any cleansing because it was breaking the rules. Break the rule, lose a family.

Life this way became intolerable. Why live it? Freedom to be me, to heal, to be whole, overcame pleasing ‘them.’ As the words trapped inside for over forty years were typed, with tears washing the keys, Life began…

Open Up and Shine

Thoughts limp along still difficult to sway into a more realistic view, and feelings tend to wander in their shadows… bleak, low, sad and slow. The slow part is OK, necessary really because life moves just too fast. My own pace is best, one thing at a time.

Yet changes occur due to the work of confronting the unfavorable words about myself that arise unbidden more loudly than positive ones. There is a brightness swelling in my soul that when unleashed lets light sparkle and shine.

The butterflies nailed to the wall in the basement wanted to be released into the sunshine. They were not meant for outdoors, though I wish I’d had the foresight to make them that way.

Setting up the sawhorse and prodding Samuel to find some outdoor paint, I slapped their backs with a thick coat of exterior paint then carried all seven outside. Each one seemed to know her place.

As a smile formed on my lips and my deepest center soared with them, one flew to the lilac bush where she sways with the breeze. Another fluttered to the hedgerow onto a hickory branch, the mirrored wings reflecting nature’s brilliance. One wanted to sit poignantly on the front of the house making her own statement of beauty unabashedly.  

Two more flew to the split-rail fence tucked between the bittersweet. The last two gently tugged me down to creek resting on the two trees bordering the wild garden where they nestled happily sparkling under the warm sun. 

Samuel was so negative about doing this, “They are too nice for that. There will be too much out there…,”  his energy could suck a deep well dry.

But I knew, and they knew, lighting up brilliantly in the sun vibrating with joy. Don’t we all under the right conditions? Open up, be free, and shine, even if it’s only in the privacy of your own home… especially there, any place where you fee safe.