Wednesday, November 30, 2011

always make room for love

i am blessed with a long list
of people who have come in and out of my life
and i have loved them all.
i can say that without the slightest hesitation
because i am a believer and a practicer
of big love.
love that swoops in sudden and fierce
and takes over my heart
and causes it to stretch and get bigger.
love that compells me to
try to make a difference in each life i encounter.

i appreciate
 that i am at a place in my life
where i can trust
the process of letting go.
releasing those that need to leave me
in order for more love to happen.

this has not come easy
and at the end of today when i say
my final goodbyes to two dear souls
there will be heartache and tears
but it is easier than in the past.
it is easier than i thought it would be
even a month ago -
growth is happening.

i know that each time i risk loving someone
so fully and so completely
my life will become more abundant and blessed
i have and continue to learn and be gifted from
each love encounter i undertake.

but it is a risk.
every time.

there is great pain that comes with this practice of big love.
too many goodbyes it seems
and sometimes alot of heartache and
disappointment, sleepless nights, sacrifices,
tears and grief.

but the gifts always outweigh the sorrow
my heart is so much bigger than it was two years ago
filled to overflowing with
daily, consistent instances of love given and love returned

(today we danced with childlike abandon in the kitchen together)

each person- little and big
that has been a part of my life
has taught me more about love than i thought possible.

i hold them, i hold you
in my heart.

and i say goodbye to my dear madison and tejan
and send them on their way to become
brave.strong and true.


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

i want

to shake my house out and keep only that
which is useful and beautiful

to decorate trees in the forest
for you to stumble upon while walking

to become a crazy bird lady whose backyard is always singing

to splash my walls with gorgeous bright shiny colours that
sparkle in the darkest night

to sit at a table full of my nearest and dearest
sharing food and drink and conversations deep into the night

to go out and make such a difference in my little corner of the world
that it can't help but be just a little bit happier

to understand the depth of longsuffering love
so that i can extend it over and over again

to make cookies and candies and yummy nuts
  package them up
all sweetly and give them away with abundance

to crawl into bed at night and hold owen so tightly that
we both feel strong and renewed in the morning.

to rest in the comfort and knowlege that
 every little thing is going to be alright
and the big stuff will be too.

to be strong. stronger than i ever thought possible.

that is what i want today.

Monday, November 28, 2011

the weekend looked like this...

a whole lot of blurry fast driving
amazing sparkling blue sky
torrential snow.sleet.rain so fast and thick you couldn't see
tiny silver.gray spider making a home in my boot
alot of loud music
a beatiful sunset at the Nakusp ferry dock
warm hugs and cups of tea
too short of connections with old friends
hugs and kisses from hannah
introductions and goodbyes all in the same day
a car stuffed so full of groceries that there was barely room for us
too short conversations that are not yet finished
soft coverings of snow
very little sleep
having to say goodbye to her again
a search for good coffee for owen
so many tears on the drive home
so many tears at the ferry
so much gratitude for an early ferry that we made it onto
not very many photos
not very many words captured
lots of love practiced
so much receiving and giving
so many miles
laughter and singing
home. sweet. home.
even though it still feels empty without her.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Big Love

big love looks like this:

buckets of soup

suprise help because my mom followed a "nudge" to come

emails that are supportive and encouraging

fun, laughter filled cookie decorating

financial help

prayers and blessings from people i don't even know

warm prayer blankets

early morning phone calls from Ontario

keifer drop offs from East Sooke

helpful helpful family members who all pitch in to do whatever needs to be done

so much love and hope

safe places for Hannah to rest her head and find her heart

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

10 random things i love about him...

he warms up my side of the bed for me

we have the same colour eyes

he is the cleverest man i know -
like super smart with numbers, and logic, and how things work
and really good with people too.
double smart

we finish each others sentences sometimes

he laughs at me every single day in the most loving way
and that reminds me to laugh at myself too

he makes a great jar of kefir
with just the right amount of honey and cinnamon
and makes it sound all fancy for me

he's totally okay with going to sleep at 9pm...
imagine how early we will go to bed when we are old if we already go to bed this early!

he always gives me a kiss goodbye and hello

he adores my children.
 they are in essence as much a part of him as they are of me
and it shows.

he reads my blog.
(and cries sometimes)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


storm heaven if that's your style
light a candle
send a wish
plea, beg, bargain,
pray until something happens.

let's believe together that this story can have a happy ending.

i need your help with this one
because i am getting too weary
and we are only part way through this race.
she needs a mom that can finish right till the end with her.

thank you.

Monday, November 21, 2011


we were going for our walk today
through the trail
by the creek
under the canopy of the forest.
it began to rain
and it spashed
quite madly into the creek
we stayed dry.
the shelter of the trees
keep the rain from even dampening our heads.

and i thought
right then
about the shelter that i am blessed with.
i have a strong support system around me
holding out their arms,
sending up their prayers and petitions,
covering us with practical buckets of soup,
gentle encouraging words,
daily check ins.

without this shelter
i would think we would be swamped.
we are already very soggy but imagine
without the shelter of family and dear friends?
imagine the relentless effects of a
downpouring that just won't seem to stop
and how cold and dampy and dreary
one would become.

i am grateful today.
so grateful
for the warm fire i sat by for hours yesterday
being listened to and reassured
i am grateful for the bucket of soup in the fridge
so i don't have to have enough energy to cook dinner tonight.
i am grateful for the shelter that is surrounding me
as we plod our way through the storms of life.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


there are no answers
and there
is no conceivable way to wrap
my head around the questions
and daily situations 
i am faced with.
i shake my
head at owen or myself
or whoever is journeying with me
and i ask
how can this be?
is this really what we are dealing with today?
and we strap on our survival suits
and go another round.
and another.
and another.

again i ask?
what is the lesson today?
what is the lesson right now?
this moment?

i really wish i knew.
but until i do
i wait
with a hopeful heart.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

for my friend...

Grief can be the garden of compassion
. If you keep your heart open through everything,
your pain can become
 your greatest ally
in your life's search
 for love & wisdom.

Friday, November 18, 2011

right now..

right now,
this is my breakfast.
i prefered bacon and hashbrowns.

right now,
the honey that i found
so charming and sticky
and profound just the other day
is  making a mess all over my counter
and i am not amused.
i am also not cleaning it up
i am blogging instead.

right now,
i am contemplating
the mess of a canvas i made
by dumping gray paint all over it.
why gray?
i have no idea.

i am not sure
if gray should be
grey or gray?

right now,
there is a huge pile of leaves
waiting to be composted.
that will happen tomorrow.
i am very fond of piles of leaves
but am craving a
tidy back yard
to gaze out my window at.

right now,
the house smells like brownies
and this is not cool
because i can not eat them.
usually this doesn't bother me anymore.
today it does.

right now,
i am complaining.
i know this.
i can feel it and hear it and i don't even care.
i am letting my complaints out
because then they will disappear.

right now,
i feel like laughing and crying.
at the same time.
i hate that feeling
when it comes.
it makes me feel foolish and like a little
snotty nosed child again.

right now,
i have a to do list on the fridge for the weekend.
there is nothing fun on it.
this will not do.

right now,
i am starting to feel better.
my fingers are slowing down
as they dash across the keyboard
and i can sense
a bit of the ridiculousness
floating away.

that might also
be because it is  nap time.
i am going to miss nap time when they are gone.
i am going to miss
awake time too.

right now,
i am going to go make a new to do list,
wipe up the honey,
make Gideon eat
all the brownies
and leave the canvas
to dry and see what i think.

and maybe after nap time
we will go play in the leaves.

Thursday, November 17, 2011


there are no words.
just tears
and petitions
and pleas
and prayers
and daily practices
and caring

there are no answers
millions of questions
and curiosities
and struggles
and battles fierce.

there is
and hope
and the assurance

even that
doesn't feel like enough
but it is.
it has to be.

today is that someday.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

the honey lesson

this morning i was putting
honey into jars
because it was
i decided to warm it and stir it
so it would be easier to pour.
honey is sticky business
and i was quite happily
mucking about
with it.

it occured to me
that the honey with all it's lumps and grains
is alot like me.
over time
i have collected
my fair share
of imperfections
and they seem to
making an appearance
my health
and my emotions
and some of my choices
and attitudes.

the honey
needs to not be heated  much
or all the beneficial properties will be
so it was a gentle stirring and
warming that was going on this morning.

i too am being mixed and stirred
and i am seeking
 gentle ways
so as not to destroy my
valuable properties as well.

i love how the honey
changes from being
thick and white
to smooth, runny and golden.
it flows so nicely into the container.

i am in the process of
building myself a
new container to store myself in
and i am working at
allowing the heat in my life
to make me more easily poured out.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

grateful right now

it's been a while.
time for a gratefulness list!

my dad brought me a tub of honey this morning
the leaves were covered with sparkly frost
mittens and toques keep me so warm outside
(i am learning to dress for the has been a slow process for some reason)
my mom and madison outside having a wonderful chat together
chicken stock simmering on the stove
plans to see my dear Kristin tonight
loving texts sent between hannah and i while she is far away from me
gideon's hugs every day
thaddeus's help this morning without even having to ask
the smell of banana bread
(oh food i do miss you)
one clean window
(many more to go)
anticipating my 29 days of giving which starts soon!
the joy of time to write miss vayda a stack of letters yesterday
becky and owen's early morning telephone calls
owen, every thing about him.
homemade soup dinners that are being brought to us
internet connections with friends that i wouldn't otherwise connect with
hopefulness and the ability to see a bright and shiny future
inspiring words
my slippers
(still my favorite gift from last christmas)
my daily photo that i take just for me

Monday, November 14, 2011

kissing the ground...

"walk as if you are kissing
the earth with your feet."


be present in the moment.

that is what i am
to practice today.
i think it might be easier
if there wasn't a houseful
of toddlers..
i am
reilizing that
attention to the NOW.
is valuable
and calming
pretty tough!

i am remembering those deep breaths
we need to take.
i am remembering to look with clear eyes
at the natural beauty around me
and draw comfort from it.

i am such a nature nut.
the more time i spend
attending to the beatya nnd mysteries
and cycles and ways
of the natural world
the more i am drawn to
the lessons found there.

i lined up little tiny leaves on the banister
and then the wind blew them all away.

this is okay.
the leaves are light and decomposing somewhat already.
i am solid and on a path to wellness.
i shall not blow away
i shall not blow away at all.
my roots are deep.
and deeper yet they shall become.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

an unraveling

there is an unraveling
and i can feel it speeding up
and this scares me.

i am not at all surprised
and i feel that i am prepared
i am preparing myself and my family
for what it may look like

i am reading all the right books
i am creating my safety net.
but you know,
despite all these great intentions
and deliberate actions
the truth it

it is scary.
it is frightening to feel yourself fall away at the edges
and know that there is nothing you can do
but let it happen

i don't know a lot about knitting
but i do know that that first stitch is very important
it has to be on just right
and if it is
the rest of the stitches will be okay.
(i think at least - this is what i am going with so don't tell me if i am wrong)
if the knitting is messed up,
you can unravel your stitching and get back to that first
solid connection with the needle
and start again.

so this is what i know for sure
right now.
(these change often these days i've noticed)
i know that i have an amazing capacity
to be unravelled.
i have been unraveled before
and always come back stronger
and more uniquely and closely me.

i also know that i have never
unravelled publicly before
so this is new.
and there is a part of me
today, that is screaming to go hide.
stop sharing.
stop being vulnerable.
(which is why i am blogging in the early am because i might not be brave enough in a few hours)
however, i feel i need to stay connected.
this seems to be important.

here is what unraveling looks like today:
lots of tears at random times
deep sorrow
physical pain
a messy messy kitchen
a warm blanket at all times
so much sadness
so many questions

here is what i also see:
gentle acceptance of myself
owen right beside me...super close
a slowing down of time that allows for purposeful interactions
hot baths

this is me today.
tomorrow will be a new story.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Oh my...

We happily set off this morning and expected that life on the road to kelowna would be smooth driving and Lickety split but of course, in keeping with the current theme of our days that was not to be. Somehow we took the wrong exit almost straight away and drove the long way to the highway. Then , we were excited to see snow until thT becMe a bit of a blizzard and caused all sorts of not so delightful or efficient driving accidents to occur. It was amazing to watch people's personalities show up behind the wheels! It took a ridiculously long time to make it over the summit and while we were quite cheerful in our car questions, stress and worry all came to visit us at one moment or another. Happily we overcame our feeds and were quite proud off all thR smart packing we had done - except not an overnight supply of kefir or my morning medicine - but not too big of a deal. Of course, meeting someone at the other end heightens the desire to be on time- which we were not - and I am working on letting that stress go because after all , snow could care less that I have " be on time or forever feel shame" issues. ( thanks for waiting l&k). We limped into kelowna with a tire not keeping pressure, said goodbe to the girl who was happy to be gone from us after a long day in the car. But you know what -we laughed together , sang together, made some fun of each other, talked a we'd bit together and we continue to delight to be in her company. It feels strand to be blogging from a hotel room , feeling this need to connect, keep telling the story . We are convincing ourselves that 630 is too early to sleep and we are gearing up to head home tomorrow in search of clear roads and kefir:)

Thursday, November 10, 2011


my boys don't get alot of blog time
which is more than fine with them
and they rarely
allow themselves to be photographed
which i don't like
do understand.
even in this photo
caleb is missing
and that feels sad to me.

i need to stop and really
really give thanks for my boys
right now.
they are
standing strong and tall
and walking with their sister
through things that would send alot of
men scurrying for cover
and they are still young and doing their own growing.
but let me tell you
i have
 never. ever. ever.
been more proud of my children.

these boys are supporting and loving
and are speaking wisdom
 and helping us create the safety net
they are holding babies and changing diapers and reading stories
for me while my attention is very divided.
they are cooking dinners and doing dishes and taking out garbage.
they are chasing and catching the sister when we can't
they are sitting and listening
they are praying and crying and hoping.
they are coming home
and staying overnight and going on family outings
they are speaking their truth
and holding their judgement.
they are showing love and mercy.

and that is just to the sister.

then there is me.
they are hugging and asking and coming along side me.
they are calling and texting and sitting with me.
they are being quiet and respectful and careful.

these boys amaze me.

i am so excited to meet their future wives
and see what love and blessing will be showered
upon them!

my boys are becoming men
men who know what it means to love and sacrifice.
men who are learning about forgiveness and grace.
learning where to place their frustration and fears and anger
learning how to give when they really don't feel like it
and perhaps shouldn't be asked to.
they are learning to make choices that will
allow them to live fulfilling lives
 with family and friends.

my heart swells a little when i think of them..
and times that swelling by 3
 and my heart
 is down right plump

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

i am giving myself a gift

i am giving myself a gift
this year.
i am giving myself the gift of time.
of space,
and rest,
and freedom from the life i have known
for a very long time.

it's not really just me giving the gift though.
it is a group effort really.
owen and my family are giving this gift to me.
caring friends and geneous people
are giving this gift to me.
loving families who
are honouring my decision to care for my body
and are understanding in the sad parting we are undertaking
are giving this gift to me.

the doctors with their stern but gentle words
who started the whole decision making process
are giving this gift to me.
sometimes i need their logic and widom
to not hear only with my heart.

our landlords who charge us fair rent are part of giving this gift to me.
my garden and ability to grow food is giving this gift to me.
the kefir and eggs and honey that are shared generously
and make up my diet
are part of this gift giving.

the gift is a colaborative bringing together of caring and kindness.
and i am excited and scared to see what comes.

i am giving myself the gift of a year.
i am taking a full year off
even if i am miraculously or medically better in
3 or 6 months,
i am giving myself a full year.
january 1 2012 - january 2013
is my year of restoration.
and i
will not
allow myself to work full time again
until then.
that sounds set in stone but it has to be
because this is going to be very very tricky.

even beautiful gifts can have sharp edges.

i have a plan.
i love to plan
and the plan will unfold slowly.
the plan involves anyone who wants to come along with me.
you are all welcome in my story.