|Jellyfish - Omaha Zoo|
Up - because my daughter and her fiance brought THAT BABY down to see me this past weekend. She's so CUTE. I'm pretty sure she misses me, if only because I gave her chocolate to bribe her into liking me. (Hey, whatever works...) She's walking, and learning a new word a day. She loves to go out and to see people and places. And, she traveled well, which bodes well for my chances of her mom bringing her down to see me again when she gets a chance. Hectic, tiring - but I loved every minute of their visit.
Down - I've written here before about how alcohol has affected my family. I grieve to say it's won this latest round. Unable to see a way past the dark cloud it brought to his life, my cousin's husband took his life this last week. I didn't know him well - but the few times I'd met him, I'd liked him. He leaves my cousin and two college-age boys behind to pick up the pieces and figure out how to move on without his light in their lives. Damned drink!
And Down and Up - Today, I went to a hospital birthday celebration for a good friend whose lungs are shutting down. I don't know exactly what's wrong with him, I didn't ask. Whatever it is, it's not good. In spite of that, in spite of the oxygen tubes, when I walked in, he was alight with joy as he looked at his daughter and her friends singing bluegrass music - they'd come down from Nebraska for a birthday surprise. What a wonderful gift, what beautiful love.
It's all brought just a bit of much-needed perspective to my musings. The cycle of life, brightened by family and love, darkened by despair and loss. "It is what it is", as my oxygen-tethered friend told me. No guarantees, except that death will one day visit us all. There's joy between here and there. Sometimes it's hard to find, and sometimes it arrives smiling and playing a fiddle like there's not a cloud in the world.
Dale - May you now see clearly. May you rest safely in the arms of God. May your time be filled with Light and the presence of God's Peace.
Charlie - Thank you for reminding me once again to look for and savor Joy - whenever it happens to stop in for the day.