Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Endure. Breathe. Hope

The last little while has been somewhat challenging for me. My dad is sick, my husband has been working in Rhode Island for the summer, the kids have been at home watching me come and go with working and other obligations, and, the inevitable preparation for the beginning of school was beginning.

I've rarely had my camera since we returned from Rhode Island at the beginning of the summer and frankly, after the heat and dry weather set in, there wasn't much to photograph. Kind of a drought all the way around.

Creatively I've been trying to make it to my table when I can, but more often than not, if I'm not on the road, staying with dad, making hospital visits, or working, I am more inclined to be on the couch trying not to think.

Of course, my challenges don't compare to many, especially my dad's where every day is a fight, but they're mine and I own them. Aside from all of my domestic worries, I am working through the possibility (probability) of living a large part of my life without my father--the only constant man in my life. The man who taught me all things male... fishing (including baiting my own line with minnows, trolling, dropping anchor, barge fishing for bass, and cleaning everything I caught), driving a boat (including loading and unloading), how to waltz, cotton eye-joe, shottish, two-step, and twirl... drink beer, and enjoy the country and the land.

This list is nowhere complete, but, they're highlights from right this minute... and that's all that I will allow myself for right now.

I try not to focus in the inevitable, however, when it's fresh and looms up in front of my face and I am blinded with tears, I find I lose all connection with my 'higher self' and grieve uncontrollably. A wise man told me not to grieve daddy's passing while he's still here but to celebrate his life and living (I love that man!!) every moment that I can. And that's what I remind myself to do every day.

This morning as I was running out of the front door, in a hurry, distracted and hoping I had everything I needed for the day, my eyes saw this:

(a green grocer cicada)

Now, many will wonder just why this is so important that I have to post it. And I get that. And this is how I see it...

Some people listen to other people to hear the lessons in life that they are to learn, some read books. I learn from the natural world. This one small event made me stop dead in my tracks and marvel. At life. At a new life. A Beginning. The continuing of a cycle that has been going on forever.

His wings were gently lifted and replaced by the breeze. He emanated life. LIFE. There was an energy around him that was almost audible. I remembered to breathe.

I dropped everything in my hands and rushed back in for my camera. I took photos from all angles, trying to capture his energy... if only.

The morning sun was warming up the day and in surrounding trees, cicadas began their singing... and I wondered if he recognized the singing, if he understood the song... if the song that was being sung was for his arrival...

And I realized he probably wasn't concerned about what his life would hold, if he was going to make it through the day or if a huge cicada killer would be the end of him--he was living in the now. That moment was a celebration of life. His life. ALL life.

And I remembered to breathe again. In, then out... and I was in that moment, The Moment. All thanks to a little green emerging cicada, who reminded me about life not having an end, only a transformation.


Susan said...

And enjoy - what remaining days you have with your dad, the beauty and surprise of nature around you, and the love of family and friends. What a wonderful world!

Susan Raihala said...

As soon as I saw your cicada picture, I knew. Yesterday, in the bustle of running errands, I saw a five-inch praying mantis on the base of a lamp post in the parking lot at Barnes and Noble. I stopped, stooped, and stared for a few minutes. It was completely, absolutely refreshing.

Hugs to you for the situation you are in.

HeArt Collective said...

well said, robin... a great reminder...


and now


and now...


Jan Vermillion-Thomason said...

after reading your post i would say that, yes, you do need to drive up to the crack house.

you have your hands full with your kids, your job, add to that your husband being in R.I. all summer and let's not forget your father.

i'm so very sorry that you are having to experience your dad's eminent passing (that's how i read your post). I've not had to go through that yet so i can't tell you that i know what you're feeling, but i can tell you that i *appreciate* what you're going through.
honey, i'm so sorry.

you know i'm just up the highway if you need me - or a quick fix in the crack house:).

i love you and i'll be praying for you, peace, and for your father, rest, for pain meds to work and for the doctor's to have the knowledge the need to treat your father.

robin, i am praying for you.

and i loved your story about the bug;)

Leslie said...

What an incredibly moving post. There are so many lessons here. As you know, I lost my mother suddenly this past summer. In some ways, I wish I'd more time to know she was leaving, but truly the lesson is in living like there is no tomorrow, isn't it?

As I'm typing to you, I've been watching a squirrel in the back yard running up and down a dogwood tree. What could he possibly be collecting there? He's keeping the dogs entertained.

Holding you tightly in my heart.