Monday, December 14, 2015
...due to significant cloud cover, but I have been treated to the occasional twinkles of fireflies in the wood and songs of the night by peepers and crickets, snuggled by Ashley, resident kitty, and Maggie, guardian Australian shepherd, is on duty, watching all from the top step of the front porch. Starbucks Holiday Blend in my Franciscan Desert Rose mug, 70º at 5:10 A.M., gentle breeze, flannel pajama pants, an unneeded down throw by my side...I wish you were here to enjoy these holy moments with me. All this and the view of our Christmas tree from the front porch looking in has made for a peaceful morning.
My thoughts have been with a young mother-very-soon-to-be who lost her grandmother two days ago. She is brokenhearted as she was so looking forward to her baby girl, aptly named Noel, meeting her great-grandmother. My daughter-in-love lost her last grandparent this past week as well; PopPop he was called, never got to meet his newborn great-granddaughter.
So life goes, cruelly to one generation in agonizing loss, blessedly to another who was in that limbotic place of not being able to live or die. I had the pleasure of meeting both these beloved grandparents, and as with most who get to live a long life, their bodies had begun to be uncooperative. I often think of the words of a first cousin of my mother's--does that make her my second cousin or first cousin once removed?--"No matter how old and decrepit they get, it's hard to let them go."
But go they must, and the mantel of historian is passed to the next generation. My grandmother told me numerous times that her mother was able to identify any bird by its tracks and by its song. That information must have marinated in my soul, for when the time was right, as a young married woman and mother, I had a thirst for knowledge--I wanted to know the identity of the many birds flitting, soaring and singing in southernmost Georgia. I bought bird books, I took pictures, I set up bird feeders in my quest to be like the great-grandmother I never met in person, but knew so much about from stories my mother and grandmother told me.
My love for the Word of God came from my "Grannie." She often retreated to her bedroom to read it and many times I'd find her sleeping, her Bible open and face down on her chest. The Word found its way into her heart from her bird-loving mother, of whom it was said could hear any passage read aloud and was able to identify chapter, verse and book. Grannie's Bible, with a completed family history section filled in, resides in a place of honor, on the dresser in the guest room which doubles as a morning prayer room, my prayers said while sitting in a chair which belonged to Grannie.
I've bunny-trailed in my storytelling, as Grannie often did. And those young ones who listen patiently to the same stories told over and over, each time anew for the teller, will be rewarded when their own children and grandchildren listen, eyes possibly rolling, yawns stifled inwardly, but words settling in their souls, germinating for the next generation.
The two aforementioned baby girls will meet their great-grandparents in a different way, but I know they will meet them all the same.
A song of hope, "Hallelujah, We Shall Rise"