Fall Reverie

PHOTO BY PATRICIA

Shadows appear longer, with mornings dark, cool and wet with dew. The usual fall into fall with a lower mood seems less severe probably circumvented by the incorporation of exercise and a long path to healing which has taken decades– yet continues. The meadow dances with yellow mustard dotted at the edges with sunflowers opening happy faces as if nodding when walking by.

Pumpkins gathered in Samuel’s patch decorate the house and some are fun to paint. Others await painting by grand-children at the next birthday party in October when my son reaches the ripe old age of 40.

How did that happen, as the memory of him in a little powder blue sun-suit carrying his sand pail out to the sandbox is still so vivid? Memories of over 50 years ago are also in sharp focus, my first apartment in college, cooking hamburger helper in the evening, but also the feelings of loneliness that never quite left since childhood.

And that slowly melts once getting to know and make friends with myself. The loneliness of childhood sexual abuse is unlike any other, sharper, emptier, so painful one runs from it until learning to stop, be still, and let it up with all the gunk that my origin family would not hear and barely acknowledged.

Healing is a life’s work…

And Give Me Peace…

Once again the ease of life presents her gifts before me, as she always does, but often my ability to be present, calm, and centered is so off I cannot let them penetrate. The lavender’s scent in baskets can be noted, though it’s been there all along the past week. The scented candle in the warmer seems especially fragrant. And a slight feeling of boredom sets in.

That’s when I know I am there at my center feeling peace. Because after a life of cortisol bursting days where my jumpiness is at the ready along with screams of terror at any little surprise, peace can sometimes be confused with boredom. It’s not boredom, the calm gives me with peace equating to happiness, even bliss.

Days home after camping, walks daily in the meadow with ‘mother’ nurturing me with her bounty of caresses… Hermie the young buck in the field lifting his head wondering what I’m doing in his territory, the graceful heron floating by over the water, the natural bouquet of blossoming milkweeds emitting a luscious scent amidst a spray of look-a-like wild baby breath, all these gifts are finally able to reach my center after a week of quiet, beauty, and plenty of sleep unaided by drugs.

CORY’S

It was quite a feat to travel and stay elsewhere for a week. But wild horses couldn’t keep me away from my grand-children once full immunity kicked in. It has been a year and a half since seeing Cory, his wife, our grand-daughter, and new baby boy, now a year old.

Cory and Guinevere came out of the house after spotting our car arriving early, Guinevere running into my arms squealing while sobs of joy erupted from my chest. Then Cory, my sobs increased in intensity.

But now back home, sweet home, my cat up on my lap immediately then following me the rest of the day while orienting into regular life. But not without more tears upon leaving, taking Cory close, already feeling the pain of missing him.

He has done a stellar job keeping us close with his children, the baby knowing his grandparents from almost daily contact through the tablet’s video. Just amazing!

So no crying from little Dexter when Papa and Nana watched them. The busy parents worked or did chores while we had the splendor of playtime soaking in every millisecond. No longer one to hold back feelings, tears came again when we had to leave, holding them close not wanting to let go, wishing they lived closer than 5 hours away.

My challenges, though not anywhere near ‘shut-in’ status, include being home, enjoying the meadow, and going places nearby. Camping trips, once a week long, have shortened to three nights tops due to sleep issues erupting in my fifties. But after a few days and settling down, it felt like a home away from home. The best second home from anywhere else because love is like that, love is home.

Spring!

Photo by Patricia

As winter melts into spring, ecstasy abounds. One day up, with seemingly endless energy, the next barely able to drag myself around the meadow. Achy body parts call for a lavender soak. Revived, the next day found me out before sunrise, lap after glorious lap. No aches, and a thrilling emotional lift with my lively step. A fire to warm me was called for.

Samuel came out to the early blaze on the patio with his coffee taking off his shirt because the sun had risen compounding the fire’s heat. We soaked up the morning sun, as more wood was chucked onto the fire.

The walk brought such delights. Sitting creek side an otter ran along the bank, dove in, came out to shake off and run again, unafraid of my presence, causing me to chuckle with its antics. Geese noisily squawked overhead searching for a landing place nearby, so low the flapping of their wings could be heard.

Skunks are out from wherever they stay all winter, their stink evidence of their appearance. Red-winged black birds twirl their distinctive melody announcing their return with a song easily identified from other birdsongs.

Oh spring, magnificent, exhilarating, miraculous spring, what joys await me!

Signs of Spring

PHTOTS by Patricia

The roiling gurgling stomach is over. My poor tummy reacted to the town’s water that wasn’t chlorinated enough. The melting then overflow called for adjustments to the water that didn’t come in time. This has happened before many time but pinning it down to the town’s water wasn’t conclusive till now. From now on all my water must be boiled. A week of being too sick to even go outside is enough. Others don’t seem as sensitive to the increase of organisms in water, but too often my body is.

Finally back to normal, the sunshine pulled me happily out with pleasant success. My boots plod along through icy patches, snow, and bare earth. The songbirds sweet chirps after a quiet winter filled me up. The repose creek-side with warm sun on the my back made the stay lengthy as the overfilled stream gurgled past like sparkling diamonds glittering by.

Nearby in the wild gardens flower buds burst through. Honeysuckle bushes reveal tiny green buds. Geese honk in groups overhead swooping down to rest not far away. Sun warms through cold air, the rays noticeably warmer than a few weeks ago.

The euphoria of spring mixed with the remnants of depression make for a mix up of emotion, but all invited in where balance is sought as warmth meets cold. Such an exciting time already here if you look for it.

ACCEPTANCE

PHOTOS BY PATRICIA

Nights roll on one after the other sleeping like a hibernating bear. And that brings a day of gratitude, relief, and a whole lot of energy that had been lacking for years during so many bouts with sleepless nights. The pot oil has to be the cure, because no amount of meditation worked to help sleep occur.

Still, during the day in the midst of winter, my feet drag as if lifting 2,000 pounds, wondering what in the world is wrong. Nothing, nothing except no matter how hard positivity is reinforced, winters do affect my brain chemicals dramatically turning me to stone even when fighting hard for that not to happen.

Though this winter is the best ever, it is not without challenges. Accepting the why helped my shoulders come down from the crunch of wondering, accepting my fate which makes it easier to bear. So the puzzle, always calming, is worked on to completion, along with other pleasant past times not amounting to much, but do pass the time.

It is not about changing the world, but myself. It is about finding the joy in each day because it could be my last, one never knows. It is about feeding my soul with uplift and belief in my own power, goodness, and abilities. To work on faith within myself which can then extend to others…

It is about happiness and peace in the face of an unimaginable storm as the virus takes hold with more virulent and deadly strains. Please keep my loved ones safe, please…

DEPTH

PHOTO BY PATRICIA

It’s not too late to grow and change. It is late in life where most of mine occurred, and most pivotal after my mother died. It was then the truth was spoken with no one to tie me down. Her love was all there was, though it came with stipulations, not to talk my truth.

How does one begin to live whole, free, and alive if trauma bubbles within bleeding like an unhealed wound? It made me a puppet to other’s needs, pleasures, and wants, adding to that my fear of rejection.

My being has been a ball of anxiety still roiling up at times, but not always boiling as it once was. From a highly static, sparking robot to a more peaceful creature. Good to live long enough to feel this joy of just being, taking in my surroundings with appreciation without the buzz.

Only when I can see me, can I be me. And only when the talents, traits and soul voice are felt and honored can the opinion of who really matters float to the forefront— mine.

Beneath the anxiety, fear, self-doubt, terrible pain of buried horrors, and hate for self, is a person loveable, capable, and worthy. As worthy of life, peace, and happiness as anyone else. It has taken a very long time to get to this place inside that welcomes with warmth, acceptance and care.

A new year, a new me, anything is possible. Not out changing the world, but internally recognizing the possibilities and feeling the newness of what was always there waiting for me…me.