Just got back from two lovely weeks in Florida. Two weeks away from the frigid Michigan weather, work pressures, bill paying, and the general responsibilities and stresses of daily life. It was a much needed breather for me and Mr. Bookbabie. The highlight of the trip was a ride on The Sanibel Thriller, a boat that tours the islands and attracts dolphins who love to play in it’s huge wake. Watching dolphins leap over the waves and zig-zag beneath the walls of rolling water trailing the boat was very healing as I continue to deal with the ups and downs of health problems. Their joy in the moment was so pure and so free, check it out if you’re ever on Sanibel Island!
When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.
I was listening to the Mumford & Son’s song the other day Ghosts That We Knew and at one point I heard the line, “…you saw no fault no cracks in my heart, and you knelt beside my hope torn apart.” For some reason those words really touched me. They seemed to sum up in such a visually poignant way what we all want and need from the people closest to us; our partners and parents, our children and siblings, those we call our friends. We want to know that someone will look beyond our failings and still love us, will look past the cracks and still love us, will kneel beside our brokenness and still love us when we need them most.
I’m lucky to have my husband Doug beside me still as we celebrate 34 years of marriage this week and that is my Wednesday wish for you–that you know the joy and blessing of a love that is quiet and kind and constant.
“To be rich in admiration and free from envy, to rejoice greatly in the good of others, to love with such generosity of heart that your love is still a dear possession in absence or unkindness – these are the gifts which money cannot buy.” ~Robert Louis Stevenson
I’ve been thinking about the human spirit lately, that delicate, resilient, ageless part of us that holds fast to our dreams, hopes, needs, and wants. And I’ve been wondering, can we keep the changing circumstances of our life, both good and bad, from changing that essential part of us?
“The light died in the low clouds. Falling snow drank in the dusk. Shrouded in silence, the branches wrapped me in their peace. When the boundaries were erased, once again the wonder: that *I* exist.”
We’re raking up leaves here in Michigan, cutting back the withered flowers in our gardens and planter boxes and thinking about Thanksgiving Day recipes and holiday shopping. I love both summer and autumn in my home state but I’m looking forward to winter this year. For me it will be a time of rest and renewal. I plan to hibernate like a bear beneath a blanket of silent white snow, I want to meditate in front of a warm fire, I want to sew puzzle pieces of fabric into colorful whimsical quilts, I want to read books that inspire me to dream with my eyes open, I want to play with my grandchildren and watch old movies and drink hot chocolate and gain twenty pounds and remember who I am.
Listen . . .
With faint dry sound,
Like steps of passing ghosts,
The leaves, frost-crisp’d, break from the trees
These are flower photos I took and edited with my iPhone4S. I’m continually amazed at technology, at the way it not only links us to friends, family and people around the world, but also how it allows us to be creative in new and fascinating ways. Over the past few months I’ve been having some health problems and as a result the ability to connect and create with minimal exertion on sites like Facebook and Instagram has helped me feel like I’m at least somewhat still a part the “big picture” of my currently slightly diminished life.
As anyone who has been sick for a long time or suffers from a chronic illness can tell you, going to doctors, being poked and prodded and tested week after week, waiting for results and that elusive magic pill that will turn things around can be very isolating and discouraging. You feel like your body has betrayed you. You see the color and energy of life moving swiftly by all around you, without you, and sometimes you’re afraid. Afraid you won’t get well, afraid you will but you won’t be able to regain your footing and find your place again in the ongoing drama of daily life. But perhaps what you fear most is that it doesn’t matter either way. Because whether we are sick or well, productive or weary, sad or joyful, we all so want it to matter. We want to matter.
I’m happy that I can say I do feel better this month compared to last so perhaps there is a light at the end of this gloomy weight-loss-tummy-ache-tunnel. In the meantime I will keep my skinny butt moving toward that light with a little help from my docs, the love of a caring husband, the beauty of the flowers in my garden, a dash of patience, a sprinkle of hope, and last but not least…a pretty pink iPhone in the palm of my hand.
“Imagination is the true magic carpet.” ~ Norman Vincent Peale
This is a photo of the oldest, dearest man in my life, my dad, and the newest, sweetest boy in my life, my little grandson taken two weeks ago at Ashton’s 1st birthday party. This is why I fell in love with photography when I was just a teenager. Because a photograph is never just a photograph. The light and shadows of an image hold the mercy and vulnerability of life itself, the beginning and the end, a single breath—in one hundredth of a second the shutter is released and a secret is revealed. Sometimes I think it’s almost selfish, the way the camera allows us to capture a moment like this, snatch it right out of thin air before it disappears forever in a stream of faded memory. And yet…this is why I fell in love with photography when I was just a teenager.