I’m sure it was the middle of night, she says. And I think it was a full moon. It must have been because that’s when women give birth. I don’t know. She stops to think about it as she’s not even sure if she should trust her own words. It’s such a long time ago.
There’s no birth book to remind her. There’s no family albums to refer to. Everything is dependent on memory, which needs some regenerative healing. I have some loose photos to look at although there’s not many. It’s funny what loss will do to a person. Some people will start back over while others just give up. And if that’s the type of person your parent is, the latter, well then, you’d better look into a few self-help books and sign-up for newsletters offering healing and guided meditations. It does help to get help to navigate safely in this world.
One thing she is sure of is that she went to the hospital by herself and had to call a neighbor to watch over my two older brothers. My grandmother came and traveled through the gathering snow across the north shore to come see me when I was born and my middle name is after her, and I named my daughter after her as well. Grace.
It always snows on your birthday, she says. It’s been forty-one years and this is no lie. She remembers the snow and how much I love the winter. Back in Iron Bridge, we’d peel apples for pie and then she’d let me go put out all the peelings and cores in the back yard. She’d get set on making those apple pies as they baked in the oven and filled the air with sweet cinnamon, I’d stare outside the window. And wait. It took a while but she knew how sharp the deer’s nose was especially in winter.
The deer were like ghosts to me. They’d walk through the three foot snow with their long creamy legs one step at a time, freeze in place, and listen. There was this wire fence that separated the yards, the deer would walk right up to and then clear the five-foot fence like it was nothing to jump that high at a stand still. Watching them eating the apple peelings gave me much happiness that we were taking care of them during the winter. She taught me this and so many other things about compassion, taking care of others, being gentle, and learning how to listen.
So far, it’s been snowing all day, and it’s my birthday. I like to reflect of the previous year. It’s like an annual inventory. What worked? What didn’t? What was learned? What can I change this year? What’s my plan? What shall I do? It goes on like this weeks prior to my birthday. Sometimes, I get a little crazy and have bouts of depression. But since I made it this far, I know now how to stop it and take charge. Gone are the days where I spiral out of control. I know things will be okay.
This year, I have a few plans brewing. Maybe they are more like dreams. One is a pipe dream that needs some delicate nurturing, it’s a long time goal. One day I will write here about it. What I will share is this: I haven’t been writing much or blogging either. This needs to change. I miss it. See, I’ve started working full time. FULL TIME! How does everyone do this? Give me some pointers! I’m starting to work on a routine but even that’s taken a while.
So this year things have got to change. I’ve been thinking of the pot-latch and the give-away. I see myself doing art everyday and posting it as a pot-latch/give-away. I love walking and taking photos, and posting them here. So be prepared to join me on this adventure. I will see you back here tomorrow where I will be forty-one plus one day.