the liturgy of dawn

it begins, of course, in the dark. it begins when i release the loose cocoon, the flannel cocoon, that’s enwrapped my wisps of dream. i flip back the sheets and plant my soles wobbly on the g…

Source: the liturgy of dawn

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quiet season

it’s quiet season in my house. in my soul, actually. it’s odd then, when i tiptoe outside in the dawn and hear the world achatter. the winged choristers — robin and sparrow and ca…

Source: quiet season

pulled by heart

A must read!!

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lunch

the hour hand had just nudged itself past 5. the tableau out the window was black-on-black. the bedsheets, warm, toasty warm. the soft folds of the flannel, pulled snug against my shoulders, invited one last episode of sleep. all i wanted was one more hour. but then i remembered.

the light down the hall was already splintered through the crack under the door. the soft bells of an alarm were faintly chiming. the whoosh of the shower broke the pre-dawn hush of a house just beginning to rouse. i knew my firstborn was up and getting dressed. i knew he’d soon be barreling into the morning’s bitter cold. the headlights of his little black car would shine down the alley, turn toward the city, to the west side, to the streets where just a week ago a bullet pierced the window of the pre-K classroom in the school where he…

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Fall-ing Down A Rabbit Hole

It’s fall, and once again, I feel like I’m falling down a rabbit hole into the dark. This is the season of cooler temps in Florida. So I can get outside much more in the middle of the day. That should be good. However, I still feel like I’m entering a dark hole. Maybe it’s my moody injured brain, maybe it’s age, maybe…maybe…maybe….

In Chicago, (where I grew up) this is the season of warm, lively, feel-good colors. We moved from Minneapolis two years ago. There I used to take a daily walk on fall mornings. This time of year crimsons, reds, oranges, and golds just glowed on the trees as I walked down the street. I am sad that fall colors are nowhere to be seen in Florida. The adventure of a new landscape is wearing off now. Lucky me, I get to see fall colors at least on Facebook.

small autumn-196566_640

Days are shorter now, even in Florida. I talked to a couple people this week who also feel lower in mood. They also both reported having low moods every fall. Just last week, I read an article that said sensitive people who find themselves feeling low this season, are in tune with the energy of the season. (Oh my gosh, how sensitive I am after a traumatic brain injury!) Nature winds down as it prepares for dormancy. Well, my energy is winding down too, and I find myself more reflective about another year of my life.

As I thought about the beautiful colors up north this time of year, I challenged myself to remember the gifts in my life of this past year.

This year holds memories for me of travel in February, March, April, May, June, July, and September. I got to see family, and to reconnect with a dear cousin in Chicago, who I haven’t seen in 30 years! Then I got to see old friends and family in Chicago and Minnesota, and friends in Boulder. I also got to travel to New York and see both grandsons for their birthdays! My daughter and her family came down over spring break. What fun to plan ocean activities for the boys! We also went to Key West to see my son, (on a mini-sabbatical), and his wife, and adorable Chiweenie, Angel. She is quite the angel! Key West was quite wonderful to see! There my husband and I were introduced to key deer! Magical creatures!

In September, I was able to attend my 50th high school reunion at Oakbrook Hilton Resort. I saw old classmates I haven’t seen since graduation! What a thrill to reconnect with those who knew me back when…! It was life-changing!

However, I don’t miss the cold. I don’t miss the long winters. I don’t miss snow…much. I don’t miss very short days. I don’t miss being inside for 6 months of the year in Minneapolis. I don’t miss slushy parking lots. I don’t miss driving in the snow. I don’t miss my fear of slipping on ice. I don’t miss skidding to a stop. And I don’t miss feeling trapped inside, one single bit.

I do miss autumn walks on sunny days. I miss seeing a colorful array of leaves dressing the trees. I miss leaves decorating the grass and sidewalks. I miss hearing them crunch underfoot. I miss the crisp fall air. I miss wearing layers of fleece. And I miss lighting our fireplace.

I miss the smell of burning leaves from when I was a child. I miss raking leaves with our kids to jump on and roll in. I miss making soups and stews for dinners. I miss wrapping up in a blanket in front of the fireplace, and watching a good movie with my husband.

I miss my kids, a whole lot. Now tears begin to fall. The rabbit hole is a good place to let tears fall.

What does the fall season mean for you?

we remember them….

This is so precious and beautiful, even as it is so sad.

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AZK

a beloved, bespectacled man died this week. my husband’s father. the original mensch. a man i most remember with his face crinkled by the folds of a smile that enveloped from chin to forehead, and, best of all, with a single tear trickling down his cheek from behind his tortoise-rimmed glasses. i see him at the dining room table, holding up a short glass of wine, as we sit down to bless shabbat — the sabbath — and i hear him reciting the Shehecheyanu, the jewish blessing for those rare anointed moments in time, when, as the prayer says, we thank God for enabling us to reach this sacred occasion.

my father-in-law — a man so tender to me you might never have guessed how hard it was for him, early on, that his only son was in love with and marrying a catholic, even an irish catholic —…

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magic day at magic hedge

Come walk with my friend and experience the sacred magic of a walk in nature!!

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magic hedge

we cleared the day, i and the friend i love. i and the friend who these days is measuring her life bar by bar. each interlude of each day, each interlude when she can muster the strength to be up and not down. each interlude when the ravages of beating back cancer don’t hold her in their impossible grip.

my friend is one of the ones, blessed ones, who has slipped behind the screen, the opaque screen that so often keeps all of us from seeing the sacred, breathing the sacred, filling our lungs with all that is holy.

she sees everything now.

she’d written me an email that felt almost like haiku, so spare, so distilled to the essence.

she wrote: “blessings, blessings, more blessings. every minute is bonus. sun. birds. now.”

i listened. with those few words as my prompt, i cleared the day of whatever was due…

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