A Grieving Nation

I haven’t watched the videos of the attack on Paul Pelosi or the brutal murder of Tyre Nichols but I feel it as we all must.  What now? How do we turn it all around?  I have no answers but my grandchild comes to visit today and I’m grateful to be with innocence, exploration, and discovery.  We’ll go on a bear hunt for sure.

Circling

Reflecting

My father died 54 years ago today, a beautiful, sunny day in San Diego.  It was a motorcycle accident.  He wasn’t wearing a helmet.  Each year, I honor this day.  I sit here now listening to the gift of rain.  Much has been canceled due to the “atmospheric river” on approach.  It started raining the night of my father’s funeral and my memory is that it rained for forty days and forty nights but that seems rather biblical so I don’t know and there’s no one left to ask.

Tears of sorrow – sweet tears perhaps, sweetened with Love.  

I don’t know why I’m so affected by what has, and is happening to Damon Hamlin.

My early years in Iowa, I was raised to watch football.  The Rose Bowl game was a huge deal and I remember going when I was a teenager and then later.  I’ve been to the Super Bowl twice, once in L.A. and once in New Orleans.  I enjoyed watching football, and then Steve and I watched a documentary on what it does to the players, and we stopped – cold turkey – actually I like cold turkey but the point is it didn’t feel right to watch.

Now I wonder what will happen to a “sport” that thrills and unites, and also divides people, but at such a cost to the players.  

And the rain pours down.

Passage

The days are long with light.  I’m continuously looking up into the sky.  This morning I saw the moon and shining planets.  My daughter-in-law’s father passed away at this time of Solstice, the sun so brightly overhead for those of us in the northern hemisphere.  I feel it as a beacon for him as he releases his body and like a caterpillar leaving its chrysalis to become a butterfly moves on where we can’t see.  

I’m with passage and grief, the heart overflowing with entry into what we can’t understand and  yet we look upward and within, touched deeply with the meaning we sense and know is there.

In and through cables, flowers, and trees

Children

I can’t shake my grief over the slaughter of these children and two teachers.  It’s a weight, a weight for the country, a weight it seems we deserve.  

My brother and his family lived in Newtown when the shooting at Sandy Hook happened.  They went to funeral after funeral.  When I’d visit, we’d pass a beautiful playground built with money donated as people wanted to assuage their grief.  

A playground needs children and I never saw any children playing there.

I read that the teacher closed the door when she heard shooting outside but the door didn’t lock.  Imagine if it had.  

We have money for weapons and protective gear for police and then we ignore basic maintenance.

We are a nation grieving as we enter this new month of June.  June is named after the Roman goddess Juno.  She is the god of marriage, childbirth, and fertility.

Om

Sink into the heart

Morning Fog

A Pause

It’s memorial weekend.  We remember.  Some put flowers and, or flags on graves.  Memory is caught, held, and shared like flowers as they come together and fall apart.

I’m filled with grief at the tragedy in Uvalde, and how some, even now, are allowed to spout lies at the NRA convention which should not be held. 

The Buddha’s last words were Be a lamp unto yourself.

And so today, we light our lamps as we merge with the lights of those so recently and tragically taken from us.

Anne Lamott writes: Lighthouses don’t go running all over an island looking for boats to save; they just stand there shining.

This three day weekend, may we pause and reel connection to Source, the place to begin.  

Sorrow

I had trouble sleeping last night as I felt and thought of the parents and children affected by the tragedy in Texas yesterday. We are all affected, all pained, all bent. I come to this poem by John O’Donohue from his wonderful book To Bless the Space Between Us.

For a Parent on the Death of a Child

No one knows the wonder

Your child awoke in you,

Your heart a perfect cradle

To hold its presence.

Inside and outside became one

As new waves of love

Kept surprising your soul.

Now you sit bereft

Inside a nightmare,

Your eyes numbed

By the sight of a grave

No parent should ever see.

You will wear this absence

Like a secret locket,

Always wondering why

Such a new soul

Was taken home so soon.

Let the silent tears flow

And when your eyes clear

Perhaps you will glimpse

How your eternal child

Has become the unseen angel

Who parents your heart

And persuades the moon

To send new gifts ashore.

~ John O’Donohue ~

(To Bless the Space Between Us)

Early Morning to the East

To the South

Morning comes as Mourning continues

Grief

Grief has hit.  I continue to learn how there is a protective barrier at first as we deal with what must be done.  We gather, eat, share, and then, there is the place of realizing they are not here.

Bella and Tiger were siblings. They shared a womb, though they had two different fathers.  Over 15 years ago, Chris and I went to the shelter, and there they were in the same cage with Tiger in front like a circus barker and Bella hiding in the back.  We were told Bella as a calico would always be aloof.  That was untrue.  

Last night grief hit and this morning I thought I couldn’t get out of bed.  My sacrum is sore and I try to visualize the lungs that are there, the movement, the place that connects heaven and earth and it’s a slow process.  I feel all my cells vibrating, like the apps on an Iphone when you push to make a change.  Yesterday I was cleaning out and putting away her things.  The waves she loved are set to give away.  Though she loved to rest in them, Tiger chooses instead to scratch his two tough cardboard models of the World Trade Center.  

I feel the physicality of adjusting to this loss.  She would be next to me in the chair but instead the chair is empty and bare.  I’m off-balance and tears fall.

Today in Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer’s poem “Porosity” she writes:

In a dream, I was told,

The body is permeable 

to life and to death.

She is grieving the loss of her son and though I may feel this grief is for Bella, as of course it is, it’s also grief for loss of mother, father, brother, cousin, and friends in all forms.

May I honor the openings and closings that embrace and expand porosity as I vibrate and shiver and moisten with tears the changes in grief.