Life Laden . . .

The snow started falling Friday afternoon. The city had already prepared the roads. My kids had been let out of school early and we were rushing around when the first flakes fell. I was with my daughter at the time, discussing her art with her pottery teacher. We looked out the window to swirling big chunks of snow. Then my sons careened out the front door when we drove up, yelling and laughing, jumping on me (literally). Where would any of us be without that child-like exultation, I wondered. They amaze me and infect me with the strength of their enthusiasm. We ran to the store with the rest of the world, clamoring and vying for the last loaf of bread. We southern city-folk are sometimes at the mercy of forced off-the-gridness and it ain’t purty. So, bread and peanut butter are a must. There wasn’t much left!

falling silence

nightfall snowfest

It was a whirlwind of living and then total silence, snow hushed night in the wake of my kids’ departure to be with their dad for the weekend. But I couldn’t let it go the next morning, standing in my yard alone, taking photos. This wouldn’t do. So, I walked. And walked. The apartment isn’t too far and the photo opp was too good to pass up…

shadowsnow

shadowsnow

I was reminded of icestorms in Georgia with the power out and down for days, the snapping and popping of pines towering over our home and then falling all around. Food in the cooler, my sisters, mom and me sharing a bed and hoping the pines would fall selectively, kindly…

pining away, eh?

iced pine

Hiking boots bought years ago, when I last saw Dery Bennett (this is my tiny tribute to him, pardon the relevant life-filled moment) who – I had just found out – is now gone to the great beyond, carried me along as I thought of the man who ran at seagulls on the beach, shouting “Be my friend!!!” with his hands up over his head. And the kindness of letters he sent in response to my own when I moved back to Georgia. My first boss, often barefoot, calling out “bird alert!” and grabbing his binoculars, summoning everyone to the window. He would stand at a dresser in his office and poke at an ancient typewriter refusing technology as long as he could while the rest of us used computers. I missed him as I trudged through the slush, remembering the first day I met him. I was all of 21 and scared, desperate for a job in New Jersey. I had to drive a ’68 Mustang in the snow to Building 18 on Sandy Hook. Thankfully, I lived at the nearby Coastie station with my then husband. Slush and boots and life. How far I’ve walked since then but what a thick rich slice of nourishment those times still are to me, a part of me as I walk along . . .

snowy trails

snow stretch

Then I round the corner after the uphill stretch and a pair of voices call out surprised at the figure in the distance and they yell, running through mush to, yes, jump again. And then they bomb their big sister’s window with snowballs…

snow summon

snow summons

 And the fun unfolds…

wonders

wonders

We weather life changes, all of us, with a bit of grabby grubby grace…

sweetness

sweetness

snowchinned

snowchinned

 

maylove

maylove

And I walk home richer, daughter alongside me, life-laden alive, ready for the next wave of change, the merry melt beyond the last stretch.

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14 thoughts on “Life Laden . . .

  1. Trying to catch up here, never a chore but a pleasure. None sweeter than the imagines and effects of your relationship with you children. With all we have and create and do in our lives, I still know of no better teacher than that of a concious dive into parenthood and the long sweet swim that ensues.
    Merry Christmas, my friend and sister.

  2. We may retrace our steps in the snow, but we can’t retrace our steps in life. But if we could – would that be the wisest choice? Trudge onward through the slush of life, and await what’s around the next corner!

  3. I love the thought of us all walking through the snow. Our perceptions determined by where we have walked before and what we now hold closest to heart. The view so beautiful if we take time to create snapshots in our minds. Wishing you a follow up of warmth by the fire, hot chocolate in hand.

  4. [sigh] I could say “awed” but that would simply sound like I was almost picking on you and your comment, which I would not be anyway. So, love the pictures, love your words, love the way you communicate so much feeling through your words.

  5. I love the pictures! You know, had we (in GA) received that snowstorm…well…yah. The entire city would be at a standstill. MAJOR run on everything in the stores….

    My NY husband laughs all, “this is nothing!”

    • Aye…it was a rude awakening when I lived in NJ. Snow was a trivial regular reality. You kept moving, no shutdowns! Sheesh….they were NO fun. It is nothing, really. I remember realizing the drifts in NJ put our frenzy in GA to shame. 5 inches of snow was a dusting there…

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