A helluva month

mason jars
long ago found image. photographer unknown

A month ago, I asked my friend, “What do you need?” and he answered me. And the month since has been a learning laboratory of open-heartedness, tears, courage, strength borrowed, bruising  reality, hopefulness, and more. In a word, it has been “life” and a helluva month.

It has also been full of ad hoc adventures through a red door, breakfast with friends, goals clarified,  a red chair, kayaking trips planned, running, friends here, friends there, ice cream, bacon, yoga, wins and losses; laughter with the kids, Legos, visions of an upcoming Tulsa pirate race, from-Germany bread, moments of profound and punctuated peace, chickens, sunrises, thunderstorms, safety, shelter, new specs, people and birthdays celebrated; wishful thinking, and a cooling element to the plains of the southern wind.

One of the sweetest words came from a friend who – upon learning I am now unattached – said, “Great. We’ll see more of you then.” Another pal offered a bike ride and a beer. I want to make good on these fine elements of living in community.

I’ve also learned…am learning the difference a good grief makes. Before, my shattered heart would bunker down to hide; a fearful fortress frozen from view. This round, my wee heart has crafted a cocoon – woven a safe soft space in which to grow. That’s good, right?

As these days are sealed in their jars for safe-keeping, colors of every shade are revealed therein: quiet blues, grim grays, optimistic oranges, languid yellows, perky pinks, and shielding hues of black.

Pebbles, rocks, feathers, bits of bark, a found marble, seeds, and peanut butter m&ms will be added to each day. Cool winds, goofy laughter, sobs, whispered prayers, thanks and gratitude; loud off-key singing, uncertainty, and a very large spider will be tossed in for remembrance.

These days, these filled jars, are crafted in 24 hours. I don’t want to waste them nor do I wish to rumble on of loss and grief. It’s all true and all present, but so is humor, joy, hope, crankiness, one-liners, wonder, and delicious surprises. People are so present in these days and it is making all of the difference. Thank you.

I will love again. I will be happy inside myself again. I will enlarge the table and share what I have again. It’s what I derring do.

I will remember the isolating feeling of loss and derring do a better job of reaching out, standing silently beside, and offering my sleeve or hanky and a book/meal/yoga mat/walk to the lonely and sad. It’s the sort of love I am receiving and wanting to share – this generous love coupled with the joyous stuff of adventure, side-by-side time playing yahtzee, and doing life with another.

So thank you to the folks who have helped make this a helluva month full of life, leaned on shoulders, borrowed hankies, and extraordinary graces like giggling, walks, and wonder. You have shown me community and that is brave – a growing thing of beauty in a season of world-tossed weariness. Let’s keep it growing.

Letting Louis take this one home with a Wonderful World, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oGmRKWJdwBc.


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