Gratitude * Sunday
Sunday’s heartfelt tradition.
A time to slow down,
to be grateful.
A list of gratitudes.
Our gratefulness feeds one another.
Quoted from Taryn Wilson
Joining the Gratitude Sunday Tradition at Wooly Moss Roots.
One half golden moon,
sparkly gray clouds loom skyward
For our first birthday after the death of our mother June 26, 2013 (not a full moon, of course I had to check) both my sister and I will have a full moon. Our two younger brothers do not share this privilege. Sister’s is the Full Thunder Moon this month. She and I are 21 months apart (she’s younger) and I do not know the hour of her birth.
Mine is the Full Harvest Moon in October. I will be celebrating the completion of my sixtieth revolution around the sun. I knew on my last birthday 2013 would be a full moon for me. I was not born on the full moon (again, I had to check). I was born at 6:51 PM in the old St. Vincent’s Hospital in the West Hills area of Portland, Oregon. This site has some history of the building; this site has a color picture of the brickwork and the acreage and really shows the gothic overtones of the place.
The old St Vincent’s Hospital no longer exists; there is now a much newer building several miles to the west of the original site. My mother birthed all four of her children in the old building. For us two girls dad drove her there from NE Portland for me and SE Portland for my sister, and for the two boys from Milwaukie a suburb south of Portland, after they bought their little two bedroom, one bath World War II tract home. All four trips would have taken at least thirty or forty minutes. She never would speak of our births even when asked, though she listened avidly to her daughter’s, daughter’s-in-law’s, niece’s, and granddaughter’s birth stories. I’ve studied the history of childbirth in Europe and America over the last five hundred years, including the advent of medicine as a man’s industry and the usurping of the female venue of childbearing by men. Since we were born in the 1950s, I suspect she was subjected to invasive medical procedures, drugs, and unpleasant experiences such as being strapped to the table during a drugged labor, probably by herself with no support persons, no doula, no midwife, no husband, sister, or mother. She didn’t want to remember or share the pain of the events, she shared her joy of having us with her instead and she would tell us stories of what she remembered from when we were little children. I miss the stories.
It took three deconstruction crews to complete the removal of the hospital building. Each crew would become demoralized by the ghosts, spirits, or juju energy around the area and would gradually quit working on the job. Rumors about deaths during the tear-down of the building circulated throughout the Portland-Metro area. Mom went to the site and took four bricks from the building, one for each child she birthed there. I used to tease her about how we were going to know which bricks were those bricks. She’d just say, “I know.”
As I was researching, I noticed this October’s full moon occurs at 7:38 PM, and I was pretty excited it was within the hour of my birth. Then I remembered I was born in Pacific Standard Time and still live in PST and the adjustment for PST is at 3:38 PM. Whatever, I still consider it a propitious event, to be graced with the full moon on the day of my birth. Especially the first birthday after mom took her sacred moment.
Flower Watch – blooming attractions in my neighborhoods this week – carnations; zinnias; geraniums; black-eyed susans; echinacea; ground fuchsia (not potted); yellow buddleia; red trumpet vine; bright yellow squash, cucumber, and tomato blossoms; mimosa; mallow; sunflowers!!!; and I thought it too early in the season, but, yes, I spotted some dahlias.
Currently Reading – Gut and Psychology Syndrome (healing science) by Natasha Campbell-McBride; Paradise Lot (experimental gardening) by Eric Toensmeier (Paradise Lot keeps getting lost as I become distracted by new titles); The World’s Strongest Librarian (intellectual humor) by Josh Hanagarne; How to See Yourself as You Really Are (enlightenment) by the Dalai Lama. Yes, concurrently.
This week I have been grateful for:
- My skin, the better to feel the wind and the rain and the heat and the cold and the shower and the pool and clean sheets and hugs with.
- Getting to play with Lucky Jack (born on March 17), and enjoying his newly found strong leg muscles while bouncing him up and down on my lap as he smiled and laughed with his eyes. And his parents grinning for the five minutes they could stand to let him out of their hands. I can’t blame them. Mine is precious too, but bouncing a 20- year-old on your lap is a whole different ball game.
- Open doors in the mornings and cool refreshed and refreshing air.
- Having a little extra in the fridge to share when a neighbor called in the midst of pulling the corn off the barbecue and realizing he was out of butter.
- Finding a new farm-nursery and enjoying the half hour in the sun, with the plants, and getting fresh eggs from chickens allowed to run about the garden.
- My vehicle getting me there and back again.
- My legs getting me there and back again.
- Finding a recipe for grandmother style natural dishwasher detergent. Can’t wait to try it.
- Retaining my research abilities and my wit. I don’t mean humor, perhaps I mean my wherewithall.
Namaste. Peace. Blessings.