Monday, November 18, 2019

To Find Solace

I am not sure if I feel strong enough to write this entry this morning but still I write. I often have dreamed filled nights.When I wake up and say "I had a weird dream last night Burton always says"You have weird dreams every night. That may be true but some nights are harder and more emotionally draining than others. I still quite regularly have school dreams . The other night I took my whole class in the wrong direction at the end of the day and walked all the way to Belleisle causing them to miss the bus going home.My principal (Gary Caines) was very upset with me as we frantically called all the parents. Weird.Last night a had a small baby, was taking a bus through mountains to the Wal-Mart to finish my Christmas shopping, and dreamed a whole lot of other jumbled mixed up messes. But the one dream that impacted me the most and gave me the title for today's entry is the one responsible for my melancholy this morning.I seldom get a dream where I actually see Zac. Last night in one of my now fading dreams he stood beside me. He did not talk and when someone introduced him they said he was Solace. In my jumbled waking first moments the scene and his introduction spoke so clearly to me.Solace; a source of comfort and relief.I am weary this morning, I feel weepy and weak but I choose to see a dream with my oldest son standing beside me silently loving and supporting me as a gift, something in which I can find solace, strength and hope.So I wipe my tears and get on with it.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

From Failing Hands

To the strains of the Last Post I begin this entry. Listening to 'In Flander's Fields' the line 'from failing hands' hits a mark within me. As Nov 11, 2019 approaches I have heard it mentioned several times of just how few World War Two veterans are still living .I recall the same being said of World War One veterans.My children's grandfather was a World War One veteran and they were often challenged on this fact by people thinking they must be wrong.My father in law became a father in his late fifties when most men become grandfathers. Our family is very proud of William Elias White's military service having fought at Vimy Ridge and Passendale. Remembrance Day has always been observed in our family with pride, reverence and deep emotion. My husband followed the military path and spent 44 years in the Canadian Armed Forces. He served in Afghanistan and stood willing his entire career ready to defend our country . He now stands in Legion dress making sure his comrades are not forgotten.His hair is white, his body and his mind show the strains of service and of duty.Many of his fellow soldiers suffer the effects seen and unseen of serving and struggle to find their way.To you from failing hands we throw the torch; be yours to hold it high.Lest we Forget.

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Another Sunday Morning

My blog coach( aka daughter) said my last entry had a negative tone. I do realize that but make no apologies. As stated I do try to stay upbeat. On this rather grey day I do give thanks for the sun of yesterday. I was able to get outside in the lovely afternoon weather and tackle a bit of the mess. I put things away in the garden shed and put the tree stand, windshield scrapers and snowshoes in the front for easy access. I look ahead to the next season. The bare trees and stark landscape looks much different than it did a month ago. Life as we know it is different. Every evening when I walk by the lamp on the small table in the kitchen where the small framed picture of my Dad as a boy sits I recall my nighttime ritual of calling Dad before he went to bed. Our conversations were short. Toward the end his pain and frustration was so evident and I always breathed a prayer for a better day to come for him when I hung up the phone. I catch myself when that fleeting thought of needing to call my father comes. I think back to the days he spent here with us in the spring and hold tightly to each memory. Each meal we shared, each slow walk , each conversation, each game of Five Crowns, each time I came downstairs and saw him sitting in the corner of the living room is a treasure I hold. Funny how last year I was holding on to the minutes I spent with Mom as she laid in the hospital and then in her short nursing home stay. Those memories broaden out of course as far back as I can remember. This morning a line in a song brought me to lines my mother sang to me when I was a little girl.Memories , seasons, time change and change in general; for all this I give thanks on this another Sunday morning.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

This Farm is a Mess

I used to read a picture book called This Farm is a Mess to my kids. I don't remember the story exactly but this morning it comes to mind. Often my blog entries are upbeat and positive even when dealing with grief, disappointment or challenges. I do not feel upbeat or glass half full this morning.I advised a friend the other night to journal her days whether good or bad to put words to her feelings and also to be able to look back and see accomplishment and survival on days she wasn't sure she could get through. I expect I'll get through this day but in the heavy rain and dark sky everything seems nasty.I have complained about turkey poop before and turkey poop is still a problem.I know turkey poop is not life threatening, not as terrible as California fires , war torn countrysides or terminal disease but this morning turkey poop represents all that is wrong on this farm.I am often quoted saying" I can't have nice things". Now I do know I have many nice things, I have a loving husband , wonderful kids and grand kids, great family and friends. I have a comfortable home, work I love, food to eat and so on and so on.I can usually put the blessings in the forefront and block out the messiness of my life. But on days like this I am reminded that the mess has to be confronted sometime. Enough is enough. Keep the damn turkeys off my new verandas.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

For the Love of Scotland

I am sitting in my office in my home on the Walton Lake Road and am happy to be there. But part of my heart stayed in Craobh Haven, a small village in Scotland. Last night I spent some time looking at the self catering cottages we walked by many times during our time spent at Lunga House. My dream is to return and feel the wonder of that place again. I will reach out to the dear friends we made in those September days and entertain the possibility of going back. We mentioned as we parted the impossibility of truly going back to the exact factors that made those days so magical. But just returning to the place would be a start. Walking again down the winding road to the Lord of the Isles and sitting on the wide cement deck gazing out the the stunning views and serene marina would be a start. Venturing up the hill to visit Ian's gardens, popping over to see the progress Andy is making on the structure built around an ancient water wheel, strolling down to the shore and enjoying the company of good friends could happen if we wanted it to.This beautiful country and country side has now found its way into my heart and it will be hard to ignore that.Today I will go to the work I started there. I will spend time with the characters I discovered while writing in the strong sunshine sitting on a stone bench on the sprawling lawns of Lunga house. I will return and find that magic again.

Sunday, October 20, 2019

On This Sunny Day

On this day I will be OK. I will take this day as the gift it is . I will do what I do and it will be enough. I will gaze out the window at the sunny hills their trees ablaze with color. I will cook a turkey that used to roam and flutter and squawk in our yard . I will clean a bit and organize taking pleasure in my home and my blessings. Thanksgiving will carry on from last weekend to this and I will allow thanksgiving to be my mantra. Thankful for family, for strong and steady fathers , for years of family and home, for daughters, granddaughters, grandsons and sons, for friends and community, for elderly friends who gave story and memory and her journal writing to so many, for harvest and good food, for promise and purpose, for time and lists of possibility, for days to be OK after difficult days, for wood road walks to look up at the sky and let it all fall into place. This day I will be OK .

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Another Grey Day

Yesterday was a clear, sunny, beautiful Autumn day. From start to finish it was a day that was all about my Dad with my amazing sister in law thrown in,in the company of my kids, grand kids and my loving husband. The funeral service to celebrate the life of Leverett Bradley was lovely from start to finish. Friends and family gathered and paid tribute to a Godly man. I swelled with pride that the man they spoke of was my Dad. I was able to say a few words myself despite my prediction of not being able to put two words together.This morning I feel such relief that yesterday is behind me while knowing the days and months ahead of living without Dad will be the real challenge. I do have confidence though that we will find our way through it. But today , a grey, windy, wet day brings another sorrow. Today we celebrate the life of Gladys Marjorie Titus. Gladys has become a dear friend and I am so grateful for the time we spent together in the last year. I began Wednesdays with Gladys last November and for the most part visited her every week. What a treasure trove of stories she shared with me.She was struggling with her fear of dying , her declining health but her vivid memory of her rich past never faltered. She is the last of her siblings but leaves behind fifty five descendants all of whom she carried in her mind and heart knowing every birth date and every important event in their lives. She kept a death book and made sure Leverett Bradley was added in her last days even as she lay dying herself. The spot she reserved for herself with the instruction to be filled in later will now have her name , her death date and age. It is impossible to say just how huge this woman's influence reaches. Her descendants mourn her and feel the deep effect her life has had on theirs. They will gather today and give her the send off she deserves. I will be on the periphery mourning her loss in my life and saying goodbye to a dear friend ; a friend who was present at six of my book launches and will no doubt be present in most if not all of my future writing. Thank you Gladys Marjorie Titus.