Sunday, August 6, 2017

Little Feathers: Going To The Sun (Cabin) Road

Little Feathers: Going To The Sun (Cabin) Road: There's a road in Glacier National Park in Montana that has the most beautiful name. Going To The Sun Road. When I hear it, I feel nosta...

Going To The Sun (Cabin) Road

There's a road in Glacier National Park in Montana that has the most beautiful name. Going To The Sun Road. When I hear it, I feel nostalgic, hopeful, longing for something just beyond my conscious thought.

We are very lucky to have a cabin in a beautiful mountain valley in New Mexico. Called Valle Escondido, our hidden/secret valley is full of amazing people, and the secret power of the old Sangre De Cristo mountains. I say they have a power, because they restore my spirit. The air is pure there, the sound of wind in the evergreens is a balm to my soul.

We love to spend the summers there, but have not been able to the past two years. We leave tomorrow for a few weeks, and I am feeling that same nostalgia, hope and longing. We'll drive through hot, flat West Texas, which has its own undeniable beauty. There is not a wider sky anywhere.

When we reach Ft Sumner, NM (where the sheriff loves to hide a bit and give tickets), we stop driving West and take a right turn. Toward the mountains. Toward the cabin. Toward people we love in Valle Escondido. Though we've been traveling WNW the whole time, this turn is dramatic.

It takes a while to see the mountains, but my eyes search for them from the time we make that turn. North. North to the mountains, where the birds will be the only sound in the morning. Where the air will be rich with the smell of trees and rain and earth. Where the air is so dry that the blue of the sky is deep, strikingly beautiful. Where rainbows sit on the tops of the mountains, their ends touching our valley.

Tomorrow we will only it make it as far as Lubbock, because we've gotten used to doing the drive the easy way- two short days. But on Tuesday a little after noon, you can bet our car, Flex Luther, will turn it's face to the north. On the Going To The Cabin Road.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Little Feathers: Heartbeat

Little Feathers: Heartbeat: Sally Nava, our beautiful daughter, middle child, amazing woman- made this card for me. I asked her to choose inspirational sayings for...

Heartbeat


Sally Nava, our beautiful daughter, middle child, amazing woman- made this card for me. I asked her to choose inspirational sayings for greeting cards that she watercolors. She chose this one to paint. Because hope is the heartbeat of her soul.

When someone who has been through a life-changing hardship, like Sally's car wreck, still talks about hope, it makes me pay attention to my own heartbeat. 

I don't know anyone anywhere who is immune to dark thoughts, to times when the sad parts seem overwhelming. But the courage to go on, the courage to do the next right thing starts with hope. Hope that we will heal. Hope that we will make it through, and with the added benefit of lessons learned, obstacles overcome, gratitude washing over us like the water of grace to give us new life.

For me, hope is born of a faith that I am part of something greater than myself. Greater than the offerings I lay out there in the world. If I always got what I deserve, if I received only what I earn, I would find it harder to hope. I don't mean to say that I hope in order to get a better life. But I do say that hoping brings me a better life. Starting in my own heart. Giving me faith that, as Julian of Norwich said seven hundred years ago, "All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well". Imagine the difficult world Julian lived in the 1300s. Even our crazy, out-of-whack, scary world of today can't be worse.  

Hope is the heartbeat of the soul. Thankfully.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Little Feathers: This Box Of Things

Little Feathers: This Box Of Things: An embroidered handkerchief. It's folded into an envelope that also holds a note from my mother, saying her grandmother made it, and may...

This Box Of Things

An embroidered handkerchief. It's folded into an envelope that also holds a note from my mother, saying her grandmother made it, and maybe someday if I have a daughter it could be the something old. I love the handkerchief. And I love the note written by a woman much younger than I am now, who has loved me all my life.

An 18 year old hand written note from a teenage boy studying in Spain for the semester. A kilt bought in Scotland for a 4 year old girl who is now 35. A single earring that lost its mate, but was loved enough to go into the little painted box instead of the trash. A card from a young man I fell in love with, the one I married shortly after the note was written. The one I am blessed to share my life with still.

I can hold these things in my hands and remember the me who held them years before. Taken one day at a time, 63 years is a very long time. I'm not exactly sure when the days that became years, became decades. It was a subtle shift, that bending of time. One minute there was a long stretch ahead of me, plans to be made, stuff to be done, so much to learn. Holding the little treasures in my box of things brings that time into sharp focus. If I looked in the mirror at this exact moment, I know I would be surprised by the gray hair and face of my grandmother. I remember how my children smelled when they were new. I remember their little puffs of breath on my neck as I rocked them. I remember how I felt in my skin.

Sometimes I think about how some of the sweetest memories are not from big events, but from the little moments of perfection that happened through the years. The time when the laughter or the tears, the dancing or the quiet moments walking in the evening light, lined up with my heart and made me feel I was the luckiest person ever to live.

We've just moved to new house. A much smaller house. Which has caused me to go through everything we've amassed through the years. To hold it in my hands, and to let go of a lot of it. But some I'll keep. Some will stay in this little box of things. To remind me of the me who lived back then. To remind me to say thank you.


Monday, June 12, 2017

Little Feathers: Bone Deep Memory

Little Feathers: Bone Deep Memory: I moved from the beautiful Pacific Northwest at the tender age of 19. I vividly remember the time I went home a few years later,when our kid...