Rhythm of Life…

Starting again…

I began a new sweater pattern, and I’ve already had to restart it five times due to misreading the instructions. Sometimes directions are as clear as mud… Or rather, what I understand isn’t what was intended — which inevitably makes a mess. Knitters know there are times you can simply work mistakes into the weave of a piece with a little creativity (this can give the final product a unique flair of its own), and then there are times when the only way to avoid a useless mess is to “frog” it back to where the mistake occurred, or simply drop the project entirely.

Life isn’t as straightforward as knitting — but knitting is good practice for the persistence we need to keep going. There’s powerful lessons about life in any creative process… Still, what do we do when circumstances occur that are out of our hands? When others make decisions that effect our options? When chaos intervenes and turns our life symphony into cacophony? What do we do when the next day just keeps coming… the sun sets at the end of one long day, and then rises again to dawn another — but we are forced to carry the night’s darkness with us no matter how many times the sun rises? Be gentle with your fellow earth-riders — you can’t always see the dark path they are walking.

Like knitting, life has a rhythm — the steady passing of moments running into each other, and yet always simply “now”. The changing of the calendar with the seasons — a blend of nature’s steady pace with humanity’s constant measuring of it… minutes, hours, days… months, years, decades. We number our moments while this globe we ride on just keeps spinning. We say our prayers, we do our best… we live through the chaos and catastrophe that comes, as well as the moments that hopefully make it all worthwhile — fingers of sunlight passing through the trees – shadows dancing with the wind, silken kitten fur beneath your hand, a babies sigh in their sleep, the soft sound of a gentle rain, the roaring breath of the sea and the silence of the river slipping towards her… Golden moments and “thin” spaces when our Now touches Eternity…

But life is hard — be tender with each other…


#thinplaces
#knittinglife

New Perspectives…

The summer is coming to an end. The days are shorter and the nights are growing longer…

This past Sunday afternoon, my bookend-sister wanted to show me the walk along the other side of the river — and we were pleasantly surprised to see how far Autumn had advanced over there. The river’s cliff-side near my childhood home I know like the smile of a close friend – but it’s really not the most common one to visit – the other side that brushes up against the town of Estacada itself is the one most people know. There are benches and picnic tables to accommodate visitors, and there’s even a beautiful dock to aid in the enjoyment of the river. It’s the side that many of the kids I grew up with are likely to think of when they think about hike-walking along the river during their youth.
It’s a little funny to admit that I’ve spent so much of my life here, but I’ve never actually explored  that side before…  I was surprised at how it gave me an entirely different view of the river that I know so well.   The air was still heavy with the scent of the river and warm earth, but also carried the evidence of town – like the aroma of someone having an end-of-summer Sunday Barbecue, and the hum of the nearby highway. The river itself seemed so different from that side that it almost felt foreign…

Dock in Estacada on the Clackamas River

It’s funny how so much of the view of Life’s path depends on the perspective you have as you are walking it. Every once in awhile – after climbing a particularly steep leg of the journey – sometimes you can turn around and get a different view of where you’ve been…  it can be eye-opening to see things from a new viewpoint.

The Clackamas River from the North side

Lately, I have found myself at one of these points — only it has re-viewed a huge portion of this life I’ve been living, and so much of it appears very different from this new perspective than it was while I was walking through it.  So much of our Reality is shaped by our perspectives  — I’ve found mine has suddenly been turned inside-out and upside-down.  It’s like I’m suddenly living in a new world, but even in this world much remains the same — tomorrow keeps coming. I just desperately need to get my bearings…

Be gentle new world – I’m weary from this journey…

It’s all Grace.

Sunsets and Birdsong Dawns…

Clackamas River Sunset

Life has thrown another curve… It does that.

I’m not entirely sure what I’ll find after I turn the corner, but for now I’m walking slowly along the path in no real hurry to get around the bend. I have spent this last week or so in my childhood home while working on my Finals for this term — this curve in life forced me to fall way behind in my classwork and I needed some help with the boys so I could get everything caught up and finished before the term ended. Somehow I’ve managed to catch up with everything despite all my current life drama…

While here my “baby” sister and I have had the opportunity to go for evening walks together — the boys have grandparents to help if someone takes a fall — I can be away for an extended period of time without worrying. This means that there has been a period of unexpected Rest in the midst of this chaos. Being with family – it’s easier to get up in the morning, easier to remember to eat, easier to sleep… I’m not spending my nights right now dreading the waking of another day…

Out walking with my sister in the evenings gives me the chance to just breathe, and hiking along the river in all its familiarity, it’s easy to remember who I am. The beauty that shaped me is still here — sunset skies above the river and birdsong filling the dawn. The air here at my childhood home by the river I know so well – it still smells like the late summers of my girlhood — like sun-warmed berries and dry grass, heavy with the weight of the heat and the scent of the river… Summer’s end hangs in the air as the days shorten and we all feel the coming autumn looming despite the present heatwave. I miss the sea – the sound of her breathing tides and her scent in the air – but I am so grateful to be here right now…

Life is hard — I hope you all can find Beauty when you’re travelling your own rocky path… Remember we’re all on this journey together – stay soft with each other…

  • #rememberingme
  • #childhoodforests
  • #viewfromthewaterfall
  • #clackamasriver
  • #sunsetsandbirdsongdawns

Of Changed Plans and Curveball “Calls”…

 

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Changing Leaves… 

Some days catch you completely by surprise.

 

Yesterday evening the only plans I had for today were taking The Professor to the neurologist for a quick follow up visit, writing a few pieces that need to be done soon, and getting some housework done. The plan was for it to be a full day, but a fairly “normal” one. A phone call I received late in the evening changed the day’s plans from “ordinary” to “extra-ordinary”.

Don’t worry – it wasn’t bad news. :)

My Healing Touch instructor was in a bit of a panic because her helper for the last day of a Level 1 course she was teaching had needed to bail out at the last minute, and she was desperately searching for someone to fill her shoes.  You absolutely need to have an aid when you’re teaching this method because you need to be able to show the students what to do — it’s not really something that can be learned just from the textbook. You can learn the science, you can learn the concepts, but the actual hands on work requires the “show and tell” approach. I knew immediately the seriousness of the situation since her students had paid good money for the course…

I didn’t immediately tell her that I could do it, since The Professor had that appointment, but a few minutes later I called her back after my hubby was able to rearrange his schedule. It took a bit of juggling, but I was able to be there for her the entire day (shout out to my hubby for his help, and my mama and second-sister for keeping The Philosopher company!).

So today, instead of all the things I had been planning to do, I found myself at a small workshop with a diverse group of people — though almost every one of them were nurses — in fact one other young woman, the instructor, and myself were the only ones who were not RNs. (Healing Touch is a popular type of energy medicine among nurses because of its scientific research and background.) Even the Buddhist monk with his great big laugh and flowing robes was an RN… :) I was actually really thankful that at least one of the other attendees came from a more “artsy” background like me… ;) Nurses have such giving, servant hearts though — it’s easy to understand why they’re drawn to Healing Touch, and they all did a wonderful job.

It had been quite awhile since I took the Level 1 class and I forgot how many great techniques were taught in it. There are a few that I really love, and I haven’t really had the opportunity to do them since I first took the course, so it was a good chance for me to practice. Plus, by helping out I was able to reap the physical benefits too — my pain levels are lower tonight than they’ve been in ages… (I know it isn’t magic – but it feels a bit like it is.) :)

It’s funny how we can think that we’re planning our lives out so carefully, but it only takes a phone call for those carefully made plans to be changed. I’m very thankful that my phone call last night meant I was able to be there for my teacher, and in the process I met some gentle souls with hearts for service — always a blessing. But sometimes those “calls” — in whatever form they come in — can feel like they throw your life such a curve-ball that your plans aren’t just being changed for a day… sometimes the “plan” of our life can be utterly destroyed. When we can’t see our way forward anymore through the life we no longer recognize, when our path is a maze with only a candle to light the way, when change leads to a devastation we never saw coming… We have to learn to trust that somehow there’s a phoenix already preparing to rise from the ashes… The reality is we never know when something “good” or something “bad” is going to appear on our life’s journey… and circumstances that are shaping us can lead to entirely new blessings we didn’t even know we could be given. I can trust that it is possible to have peace in the storms when I let go of what I really don’t know anyway — and rest in Who I do know…

“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you…” (John 14:27)

Tonight, I am curled up in my bed, already planning my “to-do list” for tomorrow… But I am also remembering that I don’t really know what tomorrow will bring — and that’s okay…

I am grateful…

  1.  new friends…
  2.  Healing Touch…
  3.  servant hearts…
  4.  my hubby’s help with The Professor…
  5.  mama and second-sister visiting with The Philosopher…
  6.  changed plans…
  7.  laughing with people who were complete strangers moments before…
  8.  a Dr. Thom appointment for me tomorrow…
  9.  muffins to make tomorrow…
  10.  learning to adapt to life’s curveballs…

It’s all Grace…