Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spring, I Need You and Other Updates

The above picture is of our property on Prince Edward Island, my brother-in-law Frank is sitting in a field of winter rye I believe..the house and barns can be seen in the background. The new red roof isn't on the house in this picture. When I view this serene view I think of spring, of buds bursting forth on trees and bushes I haven't all explored yet, delights awaiting me this coming May.

We will soon be driving to the island for the first of many working holidays where I will take my breaks exploring the tree lines or back woods. If I get out of hearing, maybe I can extend my exploring but that wouldn't be fair to hubby would it?

I saw my first snow drops this week in a lovely, small town called St. Marys, where I used to make my home. That was Tuesday of this week, but Wednesay morning they had once again become buried in freezing rain, then a fresh snowfall..well, my spirits were lifted even for that short glimpse of them. Winter hit us once again with all her fury, freezing ice pellets, freezing rain, driving winds and raging snow. It's enough to make a grown woman cry.

On that note I was in St. Marys to support my children during a ceremony of celebration for their father's life. His life ended peacefully and quickly after a 3 week illness. My children made me so proud in how they arranged the service, handled many of the sad details and bravely soldiered on..Perhaps I saw them in a new light, as the strong adults they've become. Wise, caring, giving, compassionate adults who though they will often encounter the hardships of life will come out on top. Even though their father and I have not been together for nearly fifteen years, they included me in many of the arrangements and my being there with them was cathartic, as we embraced the memories of the good years together as a family.

On a lighter note, my dear sister-in-law Pat is on the mend, in fact she may even get home this week around the 25th of March. What a celebration that will be after such a long stay in the hospital. That is another reason I want spring to burst forth with warmth and sunshine so Pat can enjoy the outdoors.

I renewed many former friendships will visiting St. Marys which gladdened my heart and bodes well for the future. As time passes we lose touch with people we care about, so to exchange email addresses and with promises of future visits a new chapter begins. I believe strongly that my two adult children will heal over time this loss of a parent with dignity and courage. Perhaps they will grow even closer as brother and sister during the course of duties that awaits them, as they live in different cities.

My heart is encouraged as I see the chickadees already starting to nest in our backyard birdhouses, the snow in our yard slowly but surely melt a little each week, that spring will be around "some" corner and a healing will come to the earth as well as family and friends who have need of new beginnings with a renewed strength of heart.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Our Angel is Sick

When my brother Gordon got married many years ago an angel entered our family. Her name is Pat. There are some people who are so kind, so generous, so good natured and loving we wonder where they hide their wings. Pat is one of those people.

My brother and his wife have two grown sons, their oldest just turned forty this month. They are blessed with four grandchildren and Pat is a loving, doting grandmother. I've known Pat now for a over forty years and we've never shared a cross word. She has never been anything but encouraging and helpful to everyone she meets.

On occasion I have held family reunions here at my home and who is always in the kitchen helping me wash or dry dishes, get the food ready..Pat of course. When she and my brother come up a couple of times a year, she brings lots of food and treats and a lovely hostess gift for me.

This week I heard from my brother by email that Pat had to be taken to the hospital because of a bad case of pneumonia and our whole family is very concerned. How we hate to see our dear angel suffering as she is, each cough causing her pain. All the while she is suffering she is concerned about her own mother who also had to be hospitalized for 12 hrs. with the flu.

I look for emails each morning and evening from my brother to read updates on dear Pat's health. I'd like to think she has now turned a corner after five days in hospital and she will soon be back to perfect health and be able to return home. We don't often hear of Pat being sick, not down and out like she is now so it took us by surprise and reminded us just how special she is to us all.

Do we tell people often enough how much we appreciate and love them? Probably not. With all the new technology we have now we don't even phone each other much anymore, we just blast off an email or text message. My daughter has been calling me more this week, she too is dealing with her father who was hospitalized with pneumonia and has come to the age where he now must give up his home to enter a nursing home. Big changes ahead.

My son and I spent nearly an hour on the computer this week typing messages back and forth on MSN which suited the purpose I guess but how much nicer to have heard each other's voices, to have that more personal touch. This week I've been on the phone to a great many people and except for the fact I couldn't see them, they could have been in the next room. We can hear gladness in a person's voice, sadness or discouragement over the phone. Even a personal letter that we recive in the mail box has something to highly recommend it.

This brings me back to Pat who always picks the most beautiful birthday cards, taylor made for the person who is receiving it. Long messages written on all the white space on the card in her lovley handwriting, making the card extra special, a treasure to keep. I am many miles and hours away from my sister-in-law but she is on my mind very much. I wish only the best for her, for improvements each day, less pain and a better appetite. Some families are so blessed by the people who marry into them. Such is the case with our dear Pat, she has graced our family with her special ways, her peaceful, sweet, generous nature. Yes, I think of her as she is on my mind and in my heart always.