Monday, December 30, 2013

THE WORD

In the beginning was the word - John 1:1

There was a lot of chatter among my friends this week about resolutions and master plans for 2014.  I tune those sorts of things out.  Oh, I used to try to squeeze myself into that box of calendar year end resolutions, but it always failed.  Change for me is sometimes a challenge.  Change for me during the longest nights of the year, during the darkest days - ain't happenin.  I know this because I forced myself to prove it year after year, only to end in a goo pile of resolution failure sometime in mid-January.

Resolution picking requires a bit of self-examination, or delving into deep closets and discarding mismatched mittens and such.  It is not work for the deep of winter.  That is work for late spring or summer.  So I set some goals, fluid, flexible, fun-filled goals, to begin around my birthday in early July.  You know at the beginning of MY year, because the world DOES revolve around me dahhhhling.  That makes complete sense to me.  And the success rate is much higher.

So don't be looking here for any dietary or exercise resolutions from hell.

Nope.

What caught my eye this year among the chatter was - THE WORD.  People kept talking about THE WORD.  THE WORD.  THE WORD.  THE WORD.  It was everywhere.  What was this word?  I must know!  Do they know that unknown words are torture to me?  I set out to find out THE WORD.

Only to find that no one could agree on THE WORD.  Everyone reported THE WORD differently.  And none of them were words that I was unfamiliar with.  Hmmmmmm......  Maybe there was data I was missing.

Turns our THE WORD is really just A WORD that people have chosen to explore for the year.  Some chose it.  Others intuited it.  It made sense to me in that weird way that things sometimes do.  So, I set out to discern MY WORD.  What had been my word for 2013?  Was there one?  What about 2014?  How could I commit to just one?  UGH!  Drove me crazy.

After a week of trying to force a word, of trying words on and runway stomping them around a while, I ended with a big pile of discarded words.  MY WORD of course would be FIERCE, except when it was not.  It would be SMART, FUNNY and SLIGHT OFF KILTER.  It would be BRIGHT as the sun, and DEEP as inky blue-black space.  Mostly it would be MINE!  I would keep it like the Precious and love it.

That approach seemed doomed.  So I sat and waited for the word to come to me.  It was rather like waiting for a bird to perch on your outstretched finger.  But I was patient.

I beckoned.

I made space.

And I made it OK for THE WORD to take its time.

One afternoon, I looked up and there was WORD 2013.

GRACE.

GRACE and I had a long chat.  I got to see how the word had been integrated into my year.  The thousands of times I had allowed GRACE to work through me.  The times where I had shuttered GRACE out and turned my back.  I am not exceptionally proud of those moments, but I will not feel bad about them either.  One cannot explore the far reaches of GRACE and not comprehend that GRACE applies to oneself too.  GRACE will always be with me.

Not long after meeting GRACE, I met THE WORD 2014.  EASE.

EASE.  That sounds pleasant, slow and Southern just the way I like things.  It comes just in time.  The challenge is how to make one maximally stressed out, life grinding, creatively bankrupt woman slip into EASE.  Guess I will find out.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Hello Mrs B.

My mom's bestie passed away right before Thanksgiving.  She was an amazing person that I wish I were more like.  Kind to the bones.  I miss knowing she is on the planet.  I know Mom misses her daily conversations with her.  I miss knowing she has that other person to help me hold up her sagging memory.

This week my mom's memory cleared enough for us to talk about her moving to an assisted living/memory care unit.  One of her fears is that she will be alone there just like she is now and she will be in unfamiliar surroundings.  I try to upsell it, talk about how nice it will be to have meals made every day, to have someone clean and do laundry for her.  But those things don't seem to cut it.  She is talking about being lonely.

I start the "It's going to be amazing" speech about that when all of a sudden I just know.  I don't have to speechify about anything.  I know that Mrs B. is going to continue to help out in spirit and I know that she is going to nudge someone toward my Mom to help her adjust and be her friend.

Don't ask me how I know.  Not one clue.  I believe Mrs B. came through to reassure us both that things would be OK.  Like I said.  Kind to the bone.

Love you Mrs B.  Grateful beyond words or measure that you are with us still.

Mean Girls Are Never Pretty

Mom's sojourn in Memory Care ended when she could no longer stand and became what they term a 2-assist.  She transitioned to Skilled C...