October 24, 2017 § 4 Comments
Dad. Ethyl. Tiffie. Bardi. And now Lisa.
Too many toasts to too many lost this year.
Lisa Kaminski liked to help. She didn’t know me until a friend introduced us; I’d just been laid off and was panicking, and our mutual friend thought she could help me network.
And she did. We didn’t just exchange emails; we met for coffee several times and went to networking events, where she introduced me to people she knew.
She didn’t just help me, either. She volunteered and joined groups and helped so many others. Her light shone brightly in this world, and it’s tempting to say the world is darker for her absence, but it is not.
It is brighter, because she shared her light with so many others, and now we shine with it, too.
Thank you, Lisa.
It would be easy to sink into the clutches of grief after loss upon loss, but I’ve been reminded several times today that life is what you make of it. Lisa Kaminski made a great life, and touched others.
I haven’t been nearly as good at it as Lisa, but I try to help as best I can. Because I’m inspired by the givers and the helpers, the ones who glow brightly against the darkness of this world.
Whether you give a few dollars a month to charities, or donate blood, or care for kitties at a shelter, or knit blankets for them, or even just reach out to a friend who is struggling, you help — and that inspires others to help. That inspires me.
Aw, hell, I’ve doddered off the path again, and it’s too late in the night to go back and find it.
So here’s a toast to those whose light has gone out, but have left the world brighter nonetheless.
October 18, 2017 § Leave a comment
It’s a photography term, meaning the hour just after sunrise or before sunset, where the light across the landscape turns everything varying shades of gold.
There’s a medical definition for it, too:
- the first hour after the occurrence of a traumatic injury, considered the most critical for successful emergency treatment.
I caught the golden hour (in the photographic sense) this morning. Normally, I’m in the shower at that time, waiting for the hot spray to restore the blood flow to my brain. This morning, I woke an hour before the alarm and couldn’t get back to sleep, so … golden hour.
There’s construction across the street from the office, a steel skeleton of a building at this point; its silver bones gleamed pink gold. Passing cars winked bright orange flashes as their windows caught the rising sun. Every pale curb and post glowed rosy.
For a moment, the only sound was the soft gurgle of the coffeemaker as I watched the world dance in the dawn of the new day.
Nothing deep, today. Just a reminder that every new day is filled with golden hours.
(Photo Credit: Diliff – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=267594)
October 17, 2017 § Leave a comment
It’s colder here. After summer temperatures lingered into last weekend, autumn has finally arrived. I woke up chilled beneath two blankets, and had to warm the bathroom with the space heater before I was willing to crawl out of my robe.
Time for long pants and thick socks and extra blankets on the bed. Cuddling close, stealing warmth from others and giving it in return. Chilly hands and ghostly breath.
Last year about this time, I said that I’m a summer creature. Not myself in any other season. I had no idea then how true that was. No idea that even in summer, this year, I would not be myself.
Now the year shows its gray. The path ahead is shorter than the path behind. But it still has teeth and claws, and strength enough to do more damage. I don’t expect it to go quietly into the lengthening night.
The sun will spend fewer hours in the sky from here on out. It’s the moon’s turn to dominate, and the stars. I’m strangely comfortable with that, this year. I welcome it.
Right now, the clouds have cleared. The sun shines bright and strong, even though there’s still a chill in the air. But summer’s childish play is over. Autumn’s toil begins: mulch the leaves, stack wood for the fires, get out the down blankets and the thick sweaters.
Do the work needed. Keep doing it.
Time to welcome the moon.
October 11, 2017 § Leave a comment
Getting this in just under the wire, as a reminder for you and for myself.
Mines run deep and dark, and it only takes one fall for your lamp to break, and you are lost.
Don’t despair; know the exit is waiting to be found, and keep moving.
Voices call for you. Maybe they’re your friends’ voices, maybe they’re strangers. But listen, and crawl toward them.
It may be a long crawl. You may be cut and bleeding and raw. But the voices are calling you back to the surface.
Follow them into the light.