Sunday, September 22, 2013 is the first day of Autumn. And, although each of the four seasons — spring, summer, autumn, winter — hold some delight for me, it is the crisp clean brilliant hues dotting Autumn’s landscape that make the third season my favorite season of them all. Each Autumn I vow I will to travel up and down the highways and parkways to snap photographs to save in an album already labeled “Fall Colours” and each year I fail miserably. I am ashamed of myself, of course, for my lack of ‘forward-doing’ but I don’t think anyone really cares that I do or I do not do this. It is on my bucket list. It is something I will do —- someday.
Shenandoah Valley, Virginia landscape
I envision myself traveling along (NC) Interstate 77 and picking up Interstate 81 into Pennsylvania and then taking Interstate 84 out of Scranton to Interstate 87 outside of Newburgh, New York and head north. The stops along the way would include Hershey, Pennsylvania, of course and continue on my merry way after sampling some chocolate. I’d spend the night somewhere on the border of New York and Vermont, probably in Bennington. The next day I’d travel further up the Byways and Highways of America until I found myself in places like Hampton Beach, Plymouth Rock, Cape Cod and Mystic, CT. I’d even venture into Salem, Mass! I’ve been there before and it was the best small town (loved the old grave yard) I’ve ever been to.
Quebec wilderness (Canada) and yes, I’d even venture this far!
One year I will do this! Again.
My father was married to his second wife for fifty-four years. In all those years they spent less than a hand full of nights away from each other. It is no surprise then that on most mornings following his wife’s death he could be found sleeping in his overstuffed recliner. Nor was it a surprise that he kept telling me the days were too long and the nights were even longer. In retrospect, I feel my father willed his death one year later because after all those years together, and at his age — he was eighty-four — he could not adjust to life without her. Over the years their deep love for each other turned to a profound friendship which was a joy to witness. Every married couple should be this lucky — but luck had nothing to do with it. My parents worked hard at being married to each other. Mama once told me she accepted my father for who he was and forgave him of everything he was. My father said to me once something about ‘not having rose-colored glasses on’ when it came to his wife. I think what they were really saying without giving me a long dissertation on the subject is that they chose to take the other person at face value and give them unconditional love.
I’m not saying my parents never had rocky points in their marriage. I’m saying they decided to be friends when they could not love each other and love each other when they did not want to be friends. It was a choice that all couples should make. Without abuse a factor (which was my case) making this choice seems the wise one.
This is the woman who made me come home from every high school party at 9:30 PM! Today is her 88th birthday.
We all have them — our mothers — and some are a dear pleasure to have indeed. This one is mine, or rather my birth mother. She did not raise me. That was left to my Dad and step-mother whom I call Mama. Right before I entered high school I went to live with my birth mother, Ms. Dee in Southern California. That summer was steamy hot and the smog was so bad I thought I was literally going to die but I did not and survived not only my mother but high school before my first marriage took me out of the situation I was in. Today, Ms. Dee lives with me and my daughter Lisa in Ohio and I am her primary care giver. She has a good life. Given the past some might say she didn’t deserve this from me but life has a funny way of turning things around on you and in the process making you a better person.
At the onset of this blog one of the things I promised myself was to write a transparent truth of what it is like to be advancing in age, I have not done a good job of this, until now in this post. Of all the whims of mind I wish to share with others — with hopes that in some small way I will enrich another to a degree that when they retire from the grind of a 9-5 job or hang up their shingle for another kind of existence — that their life will be the better for my tell them of mine.
The sad truth is that I really wanted to do a post about my mother but when I tried to do one I simply could not manage it. When both my Daddy and Mama passed on, and even when all three of my brothers and my dear sister-in-law Peggy passed on, I wrote a heartfelt eulogy that I delivered. I meant every word of those eulogies — they came by way of a lifetime of personal experiences with each one. I had stories to tell and still do. But, where are the stories of my mother? They are stacked one on top of the other in the deepest and most hidden part of my brain. I simply wish not to recall them. So, when it came time for her 88th Birthday I found it impossible to write using any form of — Transparency.
- Health is good
- Money is enough
- Kids are fine
- Win loves me!
- Speak softy
- neighbors barking dog — it’s their problem
- attitudes of other people — it’s their issue
- rain! — one word: umbrella
On the Heart:
- for the blessing it brings — trust it
- for the truth it speaks — listen to it
- and for the love it brings — accept it
- begin with an end in mind
- from beginning to end — enjoy the process
- take pleasure in doing what you love
Then Just Breath — knowing that all things are God’s plan and his plan is eternal.
Got to give it up to Bugs — the bunny who taught me that carrots were okay to eat and that if I said “what’s up Doc” to my Mum — as an antidote to all things unappreciated — I’d get a chuckle out of her instead of a less desired reaction.
Taking life a little less seriously is key to taking life a little less seriously……
……because life should be fun!
issue solved! … (only need to gain a few inches)
I’ve always known I would be fat when I was old. Why did I know this? Because my high school Latin teacher told my boyfriend Bob I would be, thus advising him to never marry me. That’s right. He said: “don’t marry her because she’ll be fat” — apparently this statement was based upon my arms. I mean how they were formed, something to do with the upper arm. He was totally wrong! I did not get ‘fat’ until a misdiagnosis of Lupus (I wrote about this situation earlier this year) which, due to the prescribed medication did pack the weight on. But, know what? I love my grandma plump self. Anyway, what is fat? Fat is but the cushion around my fanny that allows for proper bounce if/when I fall on my keester.