Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Get a Life

  Van Gogh’s Wind Beaten Tree
 Last week the East Coast was hit hard by an earthquake and a hurricane.  Both.   In case anyone missed it on the news.  In case anyone had his head buried in the sand.  In case anyone happened to be sleeping through this apocalyptic reality show. 

On Tuesday, while visiting a friend in the hospital, we witness a bizarre sight.  Nancy’s bed suddenly starts shaking, floor trembles, IV stand rattles, med bags swing back and forth... just like a scene from the Exorcist.  Getting kind of spooky in here, I’m thinking.   

Then, no sooner have we caught our collective breath from the quake shock than we find water, milk, bread, and batteries disappearing from grocery shelves…  Irene’s a ‘coming.  For sure.   

By Friday, black clouds await their moment of fury.  Wait to unleash buckets of water upon the earth and drown its inhabitants.  Scenes like this make me want to kindly preach…

 “Be prepared for whatever comes our way.”  I’ve seen The Road and The Book of Eli.  I know the world isn’t always sunshine and lollipops.  Go ahead.  Plug your ears with your index fingers and yell, “Lalalalala!”    
On Saturday when the power abruptly shuts down, when fan blades stop mid-cycle, when the house grows dark as midnight, my daughter is at a loss.  “What am I supposed to do now?”

“We have books in the house you know.” 

“But it’s too dark to read.  You want me to go blind?”  

Winds of wrath slam hard against glass.  Trees grow wild, writhing, twisting, bending groundward.   Where do birds hide in this chaos?  Waters rise and roil like a boiling cauldron. 

Time for a heart to heart.  “I already know what you’re about to tell me,” she says.  “I need an inner life.  Because then I won’t get bored.”

“Exactly.  How do you think they survived for hundreds of years?  They had an inner life.  They knew how to occupy themselves without modern-day movie pyrotechnics.

“Just go back to bed and dream.  Because that might be all the entertainment you’ll get for awhile.  You never know, a masterpiece could be lurking somewhere in your unconscious mind.  Did you know that Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was based on a dream she had?” 

Ever had a dream that could become a classic…if you wrote it down? 

What’s one vivid dream you remember?  

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Two for Twenty

No telling who the black man with the hole in his throat really is.  My husband only knows that when he can’t start his car today after buying gas, the stranger approaches him and offers a helping hand. 

He lifts the hood and takes a look, fiddles around and voila!  The jeep is resurrected.  My husband opens his wallet and offers a $20 bill to the man – the last of the cash he has on hand after purchasing a tank of gas. 

“Much obliged,” the stranger says. “I’ve only got half of my rent together for this month, and this will help me pay the rest.”   

Win – Win.

My daughter Abi hits Chili’s Bar & Grill for an early dinner with some girlfriends.  They order the 2 for $20 meal - appetizer and two entrees included - to split among them.       

They see only two people working the floor: a waitress, and what appears to be a manager moseying about, refilling drinks, and checking on customers.  He frequently ambles by the girls’ table with a pitcher of tea to be sure their glasses stay filled.

During their meal, Abi receives a disturbing phone call, one which brings tears to her eyes.  Since she’s already tired from lack of sleep the previous night, the call intensifies matters and produces outright weeping. 

 Within minutes their waitress returns, kneels by the table, and points to the young manager.  “Michael over there saw you crying and told me to give you this.”  She hands Abi a $20 bill. 

“He says he can’t bear to see a pretty girl cry, and the meal is on him.  All you need to pay for are your teas.”  Then the waitress gives her extra napkins to dry her eyes, which leads to even more crying – this time tears of joy and gratitude over the kindness of strangers.  

When have you witnessed the kindness of strangers? 

Or been that kind stranger yourself?

Monday, August 8, 2011

A Healing Moment

Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity. ~ Hippocrates

Six months along and still no plan.  No doctor.  No hospital.  No clue.  Only one thing is sure.  There will be no return visit to the local labor and delivery… 

Not at the risk of reliving the same nightmare as the last time when I was abandoned by the night staff in maternity and cannot imagine anything short of crucifixion being more traumatic.  I might as well have been in a torture chamber. 

Reason enough to make a new plan Stan.  But where to go?   Who will help deliver my baby? 

In the midst of difficulty lies opportunity.  ~ Albert Einstein

When I arrive at her home in Raleigh a Native American woman answers the door. Her countenance is angel radiant and her smile warm and reassuring.  She introduces herself as Julia, my midwife’s mentor, and invites me inside.   

I sit in the living room amid a group of other expectant moms.  A lady beside me on the love seat turns my way and says, “You’ve had a difficult labor in the past and that’s why you’re here.

“Just to set your mind at ease, you’re in the right place.  This birth experience will be drastically different from the last.”  She doesn’t tag her words with “trust me” but somehow I do.  After all, the woman doesn’t know me and has no prior knowledge of my past. 

She also predicts that this time around will be a healing experience.  Her words are the clear sign I’ve been seeking.   This space holds an ambience of grace and peace.   I am in the right place.

Quick!  Get the Boiling Water!

In black and white picture shows, when women all had homebirths, you’d hear some frantic voice, “Quick! Get the boiling water!”  I’d always wondered what the boiling water was for…

Have you?   To find out, go to Natural Life Magazine and read “The Gentle Art of Birthing at Home,” which tells the full story of my homebirth and healing miracle.  And if you like the piece I’d appreciate a tweet.       

Sixteen years ago she was born on August 10th.    Say Happy Birthday to Abi. 

When have you experienced a healing moment in your life?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...