Lordy, have I been busy. I haven’t even signed on to my own blog for over a week and just now when I did I caught a glimpse of a word yoga-esque that causes me little heart to quiver…
Speaking of yoga, while in Chicago last week, I went to an early Sunday morning class led by Pere, a presence as evolved as any I have known. I was merely trying to unwind from lots of travel, a high powered and exhausting private tour at the zoo, construction woes (yes, we’re revisiting the hardwood floor issue of this time last year) and more importantly, friends with worries. Yet another dear young friend, the mother of my 18 month old surrogate granddaughter Alexis, has cancer. One of my closest Michigan friends has a wayward ticker, literally, so she is facing some tough decisions close on the heels of her husband’s death. My skin is like something out of a science fiction movie, behaving as an evil alien life force, so I’m trying to make decisions about the best place to have surgery and recover. (I’m felting a Phantom of the Opera mask for myself) So on and so forth. Really. Just moving forth.
But there I was at yoga class, looking for a bit of inner calm, when handsome Pere asks, “When you come to yoga class today, who suffers?” What??? Why this inane new-age query, right in the midst of my fuzzy peace of mind? He went on to quietly and simply elaborate. When you chose to do something, anything, who suffers? Defensively, I was thinking no one suffers if I come to yoga for a couple hours on Sunday morning. And then “Juanita!” popped into my mind. Juanita is my young friend having breasts removed. I thought, if I hadn’t been in Chicago taking care of that private tour and consulting floor installers and dermatologists, I could have been by Juanita’s side or playing with baby Alexis or giving a soothing pep talk to her husband, Chris. Pere went on to wonder aloud, “who benefits when you come?” Um, om, I guess that would be me. Perhaps a couple hundred strangers at the zoo had a beneficial moment. And then he talked a bit about gratitude and balance in the world as we find our way and make our choices. It was good.
I have had a similar discussion with daughter, Abby. The Snarl is getting ready to sit for the LSATs with an idea that she will go on, thousands of dollars in debt later, to become an environmental policy lawyer and maybe even a judge in that specialty area. I asked her if and where she saw a family in her future and she responded that she wasn’t sure she did. It was more of the “who suffers?” sort of thing, about the karma of the human footprint (Find that new series on National Geographic channel this week. Your jaw will drop.) I, of course, take the “who benefits?” side of that argument.
When it comes to bringing children into this world, while I relate absolutely to Abby’s thinking, I also feel the most amazing sense of delight and, yes, gratitude, when I see these women I know and love and respect presenting us with new life. It seems almost as if we are being gifted with beautiful little bundles of hope and positive energy and, maybe, salvation. I know for certain I would feel that way if the Snarl or Daniel ever have children. I feel that way about baby Alexis, as her mother struggles. About the numerous children of a certain yo-mama who are all out enriching and healing and growing our world.
And then there’s my good, sweet friend here in the neighborhood. (Thought I’d never get there, didn’t you Kimberly?). There’s delightful Raehan. Raehan is bulging (harsh but true, I’ve seen the belly) with her soon to arrive baby and I am gleeful at the prospect. She has written long enough and eloquently enough and in the most sweet ways (like the darkest, finest bittersweet chocolate sweet) about the slings and arrows of motherhood and family life she enjoys with her two already lovely lassies that I know this to be true: Raehan is precisely the sort who benefits us all when she has a baby. Thank you, Raehan! Thank you. Feel free to push.
You can help celebrate Raehan’s bloggy baby shower by stopping over at Petroville where a few of us are gathering today to wish Raehan the very best in these days and weeks- and lifetimes- to come. Or, you can go directly to Raehan’s place for a skin shot. She posts as regularly as I do, but we all still love her…
My week in Chicago, with the exception of that yoga class and one other five minute blip, was hustle, bustle, run, lift, sort, disseminate, and race about airports. The other five minute blip happened when I arrived at the zoo early, before the entire rest of Windyville out for the first warm Spring day, to greet another new arrival. Speaking of baby love, I give you this new Bolivian gray Titi monkey. He or she spends the entire day hitching a ride, because like the rest of us primates, Titis have low fat breast milk and the newborns are pretty much helpless. The cute factor helps mitigate the cling factor. Raehan, don’t you hope yours is this cute?