Good Natured Mom

We are all just walking each other home. -Ram Dass


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On Morning Rituals

My morning routine goes like this:

Wake – around 5:30

Start the coffee pot

Grab my phone and begin Headspace, my meditation ap

Read the daily Mass readings

Pray

 

But today I decided to change it up. I flipped the order of the last three. The meditation is last, so that I can think about the Bible readings and pray during the 15 minutes I dedicate to clearing my mind of clutter.

I go through my prayer requests in order of urgency.

For healing from cancer

For strength

For healing from colitis

For justice and truth – and an open heart

For protection

For relationships

We have some serious crap going down in my family right now. Its crazy. I take stock of the  troubles and think “this doesn’t happen to normal people.” And I’m straight up normal. But life is flowing, it all its weirdness. And I’m swept up in its current.

So I pray for resolutions, for peace, for and end in sight. I know that God is in control and I surrender the outcomes to a higher power. That whatever happens is part of the divine plan.

And I expect miracles to happen. There will be miracles. Life will unfold according to God’s amazing plan. A plan I cannot begin to imagine. And the craziness, the illnesses, the loneliness, the scariness will evolve into experiences that shape me and the people I love. And everyone else they touched.

And life will go on.

I like this new order to my morning routine. I believe its been out of order for a while and that I’ve got it all straightened it out now.

Time to run some intervals for 50 minutes.  And then … get ready for work.

Let’s see if I can get there on time today.

Have a great day people!

 

 

 


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Christmas joy in the form of an inflatable snowman

The Christmas magic is back at the neighbor’s house. It left us 3 years ago…but it’s back and I’m experiencing an renewed exuberance for the holiday season.

These good people made every human effort to decorate their front yard for the holidays in a fashion that would delight and amaze their grandchildren.  Santa in a hot air balloon; assorted holiday themed inflatable snowmen; a lighted toy train; spinning, stuffed animal laden Ferris wheel, a carousel; and glittering, sparkly angels… the set up was extraordinary. It’s one of those houses you’d go out of your way to drive by. I’m pretty sure they won the city’s decorating contest every year. It was that good.

I was lucky enough to live on the same street. I’d see this glorious sight every night. It made me feel happy, Christmas-y. Another thing to love about the season, you know?

Until I didn’t see it any more.

The joy was unmercifully stolen from my neighbors on December 14, 2012. That was the day their 6 year old grandson was killed in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school.

I remember having a news station on my computer that day while I was at work. I turned it off. I could not take any more bad news…no more violence and shootings.

I remember twitter blowing up with breaking news about Newtown…and I shut that down too. I was weary from the sadness. Why, why, why all this tragedy and pain? At that time I had no idea that this violence was directly affecting my neighbors.

The day after the shooting I read the following on my Facebook feed, written by a friend; my children’s favorite baby sitter – the neighbor’s daughter.

Please pray for my family, especially my sister, brother-in-law, and niece, who suffered an unimaginable loss yesterday in the shooting. Life will never be the same without my nephew James, and words cannot begin to express our devastation. I love you Cindy, Mark, Anna, and James.

You know that feeling you get when your heart breaks in two? That sinking feeling? That feeling when all the blood rushes from your brain? When you know the most horrid, unimaginable, unthinkable thing  has happened…to someone you love? That pit in your stomach.  I still feel that ache just thinking about that day in Newtown.

That’s the same day the holiday magic left the neighbor’s yard…and the terrible sadness set in.  Friends, neighbors, community felt the weight of that  deep, dark, heavy sadness. The wonderful Christmas joy evaporated. For all of us.  And we understood why the yard remained dark.

The following year our dear neighbors skipped the inflatable, glitzy decor and put up a much simpler set of decorations. Instead, they set up a beautiful tribute to the victims of Sandy Hook…a line of candy canes, one for each person killed, guarded by angels. So simple…but the difference between the previous year’s gala and the next year’s simplicity was poignant and striking. The family was grieving. Their loss occurred only 11 days before Christmas. The display marked the anniversary of that most horrible day with a clear message of love and hope.

For the last two year’s the holiday decorations have been the same angels and candy canes. I wondered how the family was getting along. The lovely Christmas candy canes reminded us that their lives were forever changed. They were due their privacy, so I wouldn’t ask. But I prayed for them…I still do. I prayed for the whole family,  that the ache would lessen and some tiny bit of joy would return.

I wondered if we’d ever see the inflatable snowmen again.

A few weeks ago some of the old inflatables began appearing on the neighbor’s lawn. Then a few more. Each day I’d notice something new. Each day there’d be another cheery sign that some of the sadness had faded…or maybe they had an awareness that it was time to re establish the tradition of holiday decorating for the grand-kids. Or maybe a glimmer of memory about the way their young angel enjoyed Christmas with his family (and his family with him).

Whatever the reason, I can only wonder.  But the Ferris wheel, toy train and snowmen are back, inflated, upright and standing strong. The candy canes and angels are there too. I think there are a few dozen more of them. This year’s holiday display is magnificent. I’m so pleased to see it.

God bless you, dear neighbors. Merry Christmas…

 

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Three Days of Us

 

They were good sports. They let us stay with them, invade their turf, for three full days. They were patient with us…and made us feel welcomed.

Ohhh…how good it is to see them all together…They have their own sibling language…sometimes they let us in on their secrets…but it’s always amusing…even if they don’t…

And we experienced their world,  where they live, what they do for fun, where they buy their food, where they worship…It’s all so good. So, so good.

Any chance I get to lay eyes on them…and make sure they are eating and sleeping…and brushing their teeth…

I’ll take any chance like that whenever I can get it.

 

 

 

 

 


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The Love

If I get murdered in the city
Go read the letter in my desk
Don’t bother with all my belongings
Pay attention to the list

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Make sure my sister knows I love her
Make sure my mother knows the same
Always remember there was nothing worth sharing
Like the love that let us share our name
Always remember there was nothing worth sharing
Like the love that let us share our name

Writer(s): Scott Yancey Avett, Timothy Seth Avett
Copyright: Ramseur Family Fold Music, Nemoivmusic, First Big Snow Publishing

Kane Family photo credits to Joy Kane, Tim Kane, Grace Mogadam

 

photo (1)

This guy was so sick the day of my A race. He drove me 800 miles so I could race it. He went with me to be my Sherpa, support me and cheer me on. He got a nasty, nasty virus the night before the big day. Chills, fever, dizzy, dehydrated…but he managed to get to the race and keep it together from the early morning wake up until the we left the post race party.

This is just one example of the many times he has put his interests aside to let me pursue mine.

Who do I appreciate? Who am I grateful for? This guy.