My brother, some cousins and me, circa 1980 (ish).
My Grandfather died November 18th, a little over a week after I last wrote here. His death was one surrounded by friends and family and in his own home, knowing he was loved, cherished and cared for deeply and totally. If you ask me, it's kind of the perfect way to go.
Since then, we've been cleaning out his home, connecting as a family and finding strength, love and peace in memories and togetherness. While I feel like I've been handling it all pretty well, I've had some pretty awesome physical manifestations of stress. This last week I spent a huge chunk of time getting acupuncture, gua sha, moxibustion and chiropractic... all so my jaw would line up properly and I could eat without pain. The night out with friends, wine, massage and talk really was the kicker I think. That next morning I woke up without pain for the first time all week.
And that's how it's been around here. I feel OK until my body reminds me I'm not.
Meanwhile I've been spending a lot of time looking at this photo of my cousin and me, taken after another raid on the strawberry patch when we were maybe four years old (Mike and I are only 4 days apart - we grew up pretending to be twins).
That smile. His and mine. Both so perfect and open. I love those smiles. And I see it in Lily and Anya's face pretty frequently, so I feel like I'm doing something right.
We also took on a new batch of baby chicks. They were, I kid you not, hatched from a dozen fertile eggs purchased at Trader Joe's and put under a broody chicken. Nine of the 12 hatched. The woman who tried this grand experiment couldn't keep them so they live with us now spending their time on our stove top where it's warm and dry. At least two are starting to look like roosters. So who knows how many will be laying hens and how many will go the way of the soup pot.
I know. It's totally terrible to say "soup pot" and then show you that face. I'm broken.
But that's what's happening now. I've got my head down, peeking up to look for rays of sunshine in little girl faces and sweet soft yellow chicks. And spending lots of time and money to keep my body moving properly. It's what it is. And that's OK.
How are you?