A swell as big as a house
Rose slowly in front of her.
while the giant wave just hung there waiting.
But finally, we reached the crest
A swell as big as a house
Rose slowly in front of her.
But finally, we reached the crest
I’m making an exception on this Pass it Along Getting to Know You questionnaire, because
When M. Oniker tagged me, I first thought I’d decline as usual. But after reading her answers and thinking of some of my own, I started to reconsider. If you’ve tagged me on this same questionnaire already, I apologize. I still don’t do awards or anything where you’re supposed to tag a bunch of people, or if I just feel overwhelmed…. Why do I feel like I have to explain? Anyway here goes!
1. Name a moment in your life when you felt you were most courageous.
There were many moments of courage in the 30 something years I worked as a substance abuse counselor. It’s amazing to me now that I even did that job for so long, especially since I’ve retired and my inner introvert has come out of the closet. I don’t recall one specific moment, but I often had to assert my truth and confront the voice of addiction coming from clients who were angry and rude because deep down they hurt like hell. Sometimes I faced the monster with gentleness. Other times, I had to be firm and practice boundary setting. But I could not run and hide. I must’ve gotten better with practice, but it was never easy. Thank God for the moments of rejoicing and the privilege of witnessing recovery. It took courage to leave that job, to say, enough, to the growing bureaucracy and red tape and trust that I’d be taken care of – just like it took courage ten years earlier to say enough after the post-divorce rebounds and trust that God had a plan for my life.
2. If you had to choose only one breakfast cereal for the rest of your life, which one would it be?
Oh good. Now we get a light and easy question. Every morning, I eat oatmeal with apples, bananas and walnuts (plus pomegranate, blueberries or peaches when in season) The every morning part might sound boring, but it’s really good and my husband makes breakfast, so I’m okay sticking with that. Occasionally we go to IHOP for dinner and order pancakes and omelettes.
3. When have you felt the most scared?
I’m sure it was when one of my kids was in trouble, like when the police called about my son when he was 15 or when my daughter was going through something scary. Nothing grabs hold of my heart like when one of my kids (or dogs) is in trouble. It was worse when they were young. I’ll never forget that feeling of being in a public place and losing sight of my child even for a few seconds. They’re grown now, but I still get a gut/heart blip when they’re going through something hard.
4. If you could sing like any musical artist, who would you choose?
I love to sing, especially when I can experiment with harmonies. Not to brag, but I used to have a good range. Now it takes more work to keep the old vocal chords in shape. The high notes are harder to reach these days. I love listening to Celtic music and wonder if I could’ve been a Celtic Woman. But other paths called. When I read this question, Sarah McLachlan came to mind. I also like Pink. And then there’s Loreena Mckennitt. Take your pick!
5. Do you collect anything?
Yes. Too many things, so I’m de-cluttering. The things I collect that give me joy are snow globes. Plus, I’ve inherited my mother’s angel collection and will keep many of them. Oh, and blue and amber glass bottles. But that’s it. And rabbits. And candles for hurricanes. That’s it.
6. If you could live inside a TV show or movie, what would it be?
If you’ve been reading my posts lately, you might think I’m going to say Star Trek. If it was the 60s, I would definitely say that cause of my old crush, Mr. Spock. But now I know I get motion sickness too easily, and beaming any where would probably make me faint. Plus I love old mother earth, so I’m going to go with Northern Exposure – as long as I can fly south for the winter after I’ve seen the Northern Lights. There’s something about that quirky little town and being close to nature. But I have a feeling I’d get tired of it about mid-winter. This video gives the best overview of the show, though I wish Ed and Marilyn could have made it.
7. Have you ever had a reoccurring dream? If so, what was it?
Water has been the most common element in dreams I remember. In my twenties, I had a lot of dreams about tidal waves – trying to get out of the way, and OMG Where did we park the car? Then there were the dreams about going over steep, high bridges. Later things calmed down, and I dreamed about water covering the path ahead of me. My favorite water dreams are about stepping out in faith as a stepping stone rises to meet my foot and the dreams where I was able to breathe under water. I love to swim, so those were the best. I could stay under water as long a I wanted to. But I’ll never forget the dream where I was flying low and fast over the marshy intra-coastal canals just inches from the sparkling water.
There. I did it. That’s all the questions. The hardest part is tagging two people. There is absolutely no obligation of course.
Joey at https://jolenemottern.com/ does these things sometimes, so maybe I could tag her. Joey has some hilarious real life posts. I like how she makes up her own version of words that flow naturally.
Then there’s Laura from https://riddlefromthemiddle.com/ where you’ll find a diverse range of topics like social justice, family, and lots of fun stuff.
I’ll be cutting back on my blogging over the next couple of weeks to give more time to family, household projects, and writing. But I still plan to drop in for Stream of Consciousness Saturday and Good News Tuesday.
Here are some photos I took this month at the inlet.
I’m thankful for a nice visit with my son and his girlfriend who came down from the mountains Tuesday. After a swim in the ocean, we walked around the south end of the island to relax in the intracoastal waterway and watch the sunset. My son who’s in his 30s, and my daughter, who’s in her 20s, played in the water like when they were kids fascinated by the tiny clams they found in the wet sand.
You can let go of worries and
open your heart
when you immerse yourself in a natural body of water
under the beauty of a setting sun.
Reflecting the sentinel
Your swells rise to me
Calling my name
In crashing waves
Alive with energy
I breathe in the magic
Of full moon tide.
I took this photo with my phone last night. The words came to me later as I moved closer, stood in the water, and felt the aliveness of the ocean. The photo does not quite capture her power. An hour earlier, she had knocked me down twice, but I had to laugh and say, “Okay, you win. Tonight is not the night for swimming.” But it was a night for gazing.
Today’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt was about magic, and while I thought of a few good songs, I decided to share this poem instead. The ocean in moonlight has always held a special magic for me.
My weekend was intense, busy, and very social. I knew it would be outside my comfort zone, but I was asked to be on the music team, and I wanted to give back for all the blessings I’ve received. Leaning heavily toward introversion, I’m more comfortable finding my spiritual moments alone in quiet places, but thankfully, I found God in many varied moments during my four days serving at “EC 95” (The 95th Cursillo weekend of the East Carolina Episcopal Diocese.)
Cursillo is a three day adventure for 20 pilgrims who are there to learn about Christian leadership and to be loved and served by the team. One of the common experiences shared by pilgrims was a deeper relationship with Jesus and one another. As a team member serving the pilgrims, I felt this deepening, too. Even with the lack of sleep from late nights and early mornings, even with my occasional discomfort from being around many people who I didn’t know well, I felt the deepening. I felt the love for people who became family.
It helped that our Cursillo weekend was held at Trinity Center, a place close to nature and close to my heart, where they build around the trees.
Trinity is an Episcopal retreat center nestled on the North Carolina coast between Bogue Sound and the Atlantic Ocean.
One of my favorite places at Trinity Center, besides the beach…. and the sound….. and the pond….
…is the tunnel that runs under the main road and leads to the beach.
On Friday afternoon, as I walked the wooded road to my room during a short break, I stopped to admire the light shining through the leaves ahead.
It was here that I felt the powerful and undeniable presence of my parents. They “told” me (in feelings more than words) of their joy that I was there serving with my husband, and that they are proud of us both. My parents had a long history of ministry in soup kitchens and working with veterans. This is the first time I’ve felt them both together since my father died in January. The confirmation that they are together still makes my heart sing.
And I did a lot of singing at Cursillo. As part of the music team, I sang, played my guitar, and got to experiment with the new drum I bought for this occasion.
Cursillo music is mostly folksy with some contemporary praise songs. When somebody requested “Wade In the Water,” we had to hunt for the music because it wasn’t on our song list. But it turned out to be such a big hit, we sang this powerful spiritual three times during the weekend. This article explains that “Harriet Tubman used the song “Wade in the Water” to tell escaping slaves to get off the trail and into the water to make sure the dogs slavecatchers used couldn’t sniff out their trail.”
The following arrangement, while different than the simple version we sang, gives a feeling close to what I felt during our closing service singing with about 50 people and three guitars as I kept a strong, steady beat on my drum.
In spite of the intensity, I’m thankful to have served at EC 95. But some day, I want to go to Trinity Center just to relax. I bet I’ll do some singing and wading, too.
Just one more swim
Before the water gets too cold
As long as I keep moving.
When I rest,
My fingertips feel numb.
Back on the beach
Water offers more
than just a swimming pool.
I study her art
on the canvas of sand.
I ask the golden sun
To erase my goosebumps
And grab my sweatshirt.
Summer sleeps now.
(All photos by JoAnne Silvia)
Today’s Stream of Consciousness prompt is, “accumulate.”
I’m spending the weekend in the mountains of North Carolina with my friend. It was just a coincidence that it’s the weekend of a tropical storm on the coast where I live. Water sure did accumulate there last night. My husband informed me we have some leaks in the house. Such is life. I hope the storm weakens and goes out to see and all are safe.
Here in the mountains, it’s much cooler than where I was yesterday. The clouds accumulated over the mountains last night so that I could not see the tops of the pinnacles. They just disappeared into pale grey mist.
I’m not a morning person, but this morning nature woke me early.Was it only because water had accumulated in my body and needed to be released?
Or was it for the sunrise?
The Saturday Stream of Consciousness is brought to you by Linda who has accumulated an abundance of writing streams at her place. Check them out at the link below:
Here are the rules:
1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.
2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.
3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.
4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.
5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.
6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!
7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.
8. Have fun!
“The earth is what we all have in common.” Wendell Berry
We all live on the same planet.
We all need the same mix of air.
Designed to eat from Earth’s garden
And drink from bodies of water
Abundant in all of our bodies,
We all floated in our mother’s wombs
We all cry the same salty tears.
We are more alike than different.
You would think
we could all get along
If not for ourselves, then
For the sake of all children
of the great Mother Earth.
And we can.
This is my offering for #PoetsForPeace which can be found here:
…its haunting melodies often spark the remembrance of a vague “water” memory, perhaps a nebulous recollection of my wet beginning that lingers somewhere in memory’s oldest and deepest recesses.
The euphoric effect of swimming or floating in water has often made me wonder about that “vague water memory.” I always miss being weightless in that element when winter comes. But living in the present of summer, I realize how gloriously addictive swimming can be.
When weather permits, I swim in the ocean. Her waves dance with me and caress my skin. Every now and then, she can get a little rough in her play, just to show me who’s boss, and I laugh at her and myself when she puts me in my place. I have to respect her power.
Sometimes I swim with a friend who has a pool at her apartment complex. We talk to catch up for the first thirty minutes or so, and then we get more into moving in the water. With each laid back breast stroke, I watch the soft ripples billow out before me. I glide through cool liquid that washes away every worry. I am free.
You’d think with my love for water, I’d be a water sign. But I was born in mid December, so my sign is Sagittarius, a fire sign. I can only guess that water keeps the fire from overwhelming me. Water soothes my soul. No wonder blue is my favorite color. Except when my favorite color is green.
I missed the pool and the ocean last week as I’ve been dealing with a rare head cold and heeding my body’s message to rest. I’m drinking as much water as I can, and I am ready to be well.
Water heals us,
We are made mostly of water.
Our continents are joined by water.
Let healing waters flow
Through our bodies
Reviving our spirits.
(I’m posting a little earlier than usual this week, because I’ve got some busy days ahead. Have a great week, everyone!)