Summertime 2018
I  feel fortunate to have the summers off—I learned that at this point, I  really do need the rest.  By no means am I complaining, but teaching is  hard; especially in that it is more energy-sapping than I’ve wanted to  admit.  I welcomed this summer with wider arms than usual...

capturing the mountain.jpg

My  friend, Shari, will laugh at this, but this was one of my best summers  ever.  (Post-college, we frequently visited friends in Pittsburgh and  after every weekend there I would unhesitatingly announce it was “the  best weekend, ever!”  Most of my friends know I suffer from “Groundhog’s  Day” syndrome, and am prone to hyperbole…But I really do mean it this  time 😊...this summer was remarkable.)

My family seemed to shirk  this shroud that has been hanging over us:  three years ago we lost Ed’s  sister and mother only 28 days apart and hindsight tells me the  tentacles of grief were farther reaching and detrimentally invasive than  we were aware. We three noted a clearer vision of our present and immersed in all the experiences more fully.

The water was so cold and refreshing!  

Although  the gradual, uphill roll to a larger clarity was subtle, the actual  summer began with our now-annual Solstice party surrounded by a group of  close, like-minded, confidants officially dubbed “The Nest”.  Our  small, humanist “family” met that night to eat our favorite foods, enjoy  an impromptu lesson on the solstice sun, and discuss things that make  our hearts sing.  We agreed this would become a monthly practice.

Most  significantly, we traveled to Seattle where we solidified that we  really are “city mice” and crave the bustle and proximity urban life  offers. We had dinner with an invaluable former student, Kara, and her  fiance; and ultimately visited Katherine, a dear, long-time friend who,   though separated by time and distance, is never far from our hearts.   Seeing her and her family and being in her home this June was a big part  of our reset—she was motherly and a sage for me when I had Danny and  remains so.  Winding up the trip, she took us to Mount Ranier which we  thoroughly enjoyed—the air was cleaner, fresher; it expanded our lungs  to match our hearts. We danced in the summer run-off and romped in the  dampened snow.  Invigorated.  Cleansed.

This summer, finding our  people, both old and new, after a time of emotional depletion, was no  accident. We found what we barely realized we were missing.