Friday, July 26, 2013

Saving a Special Place and Sitting in One

I'm very proud of the babyMomma who met a field producer for WBUR on our first visit back to Boston Children's Hospital after saying goodbye to her baby girl.  The station was doing a story on the garden, and plans to expand the hospital where the garden now sits.  Reading about our story on, a producer called our home and Schuyler agreed to meet.   We were not able to do the interview in the garden, so we met on a noisy sidewalk outside.  I don't know why I said "we."  This was all the babyMomma.  I had no courage whatsoever.  From the entire conversation, a tiny little soundbite was used in the story.  For me, more powerful than that and far more brave, was that the babyMomma allowed the use of two pictures in the slideshow that accompanies the story online.  If you have a moment, you can read the story and view the slideshow here.

It has been a tough week around here.  A very special woman in our church passed away.  20+ years later than her doctors ever thought she would!  My piano teacher and second mom.  I must have driven her crazy with my talking about everything but the lesson, and my need to be perfect that had me stopping and restarting so many times in those early years.  From third grade through sophomore in high school, I believe.  She put me on the piano rotation for evening church services when I was in sixth or seventh grade.  In high school, she somehow managed to get me to play for Sunday School opening exercises which were held in the church sanctuary and there was no organ to hide behind.  Piano to accompany singing and then an offertory while ushers took up the Sunday School offering.  When I came back to my home church after college and marriage, she made sure I was on the piano rotation for morning and evening services and somehow, when my children were very young she talked me into accompanying the church choir to replace an accompanist who left.  Several years ago when her heart was making her just too weak to do what she loved, she would step off the organ bench for a few months and yet again, persuaded me to do something way out of my comfort zone.  Today, for her funeral service, I found myself sitting in her seat, trying to bring some peace and comfort to her family, trying to hear her in my playing.  I regret that I never got grandbaby girl over to her house for a visit.  They both had failing hearts and were pretty weak.  They shared puffy faces and eyes from weak hearts and heart meds.  They both had such a stronghold on my heart and I miss them terribly.

Yet I am always with you;
    you hold me by my right hand.
You guide me with your counsel,
    and afterward you will take me into glory.
Whom have I in heaven but you?
    And earth has nothing I desire besides you.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
    but God is the strength of my heart
    and my portion forever.
Psalm 73: 23-26

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Loss and Motivation

I am finding it interesting what loss can do to motivation.  Since my children were little (twenty years ago?) and could play outside on their own with moderate supervision, I've had flower beds.  I could garden and keep an eye and ears on them yet they had the satisfaction of independence.  The flower beds were dug up, heeled in at my parents' home while a new house was built, then transplanted over time to new beds here.  I'm not a perfect gardener, but I was happy with how things looked.   Weeding, dead-heading, rearranging.  Then LOSS.  2005 - 2006 An eighteen-month deployment.  It was the hardest thing I had ever faced.  Alone with two teenagers, no husband, no promise of a safe return.  I slugged through the days; lived on the computer scanning for news.  Motivation for doing much of anything was gone.  The flower beds took the worst hit and never quite recovered.  Since his return and through his last deployment, it didn't get any better.  Invasive weeds and transplants from birds and chipmunks have created a tangled jungle that gets mowed with a tractor twice a year!!!  Phase two of loss.  Permanent loss of precious grandbaby girl.  Hubby and I tackled the garden.  Drastic cutting, digging.  Plans to move a lot of things out this fall and transform it into what it looked like in the beginning, with a path and little tucked away things that my little ones enjoyed.  Meanwhile, grandbaby girl's paternal grandparents have been hard at work creating a special garden.  And grandbaby girl's parents are trying their hand at raising a small batch of butterflies and creating a special garden of their own.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Mourning Cloak for a Monday Morning

Lots of life for a Monday morning after the 4th of July hiatus.  Two turkeys in the front yard, a snake trying to fit in a crevice in our retaining wall, a colony of ants swarming the ant bait by the front door,

 and this butterfly hanging upside down on a window screen upstairs.  It closed its wings as I snapped a picture.

 I found a description here with much better pictures than I was able to get.  I think Mourning Cloak is just right.