Archive for May, 2014

Turtle crossing

Sunday, May 11th, 2014

Today is Mothers Day, and the one who holds my heart and I were driving to our Brazos valley home from our coastal plains home. It was a nice weekend, she was able to spend time with her daughter, son and son in law. There was special food cooked, mother daughter pedicures, some amazing sunsets, and new flowers too!

I hope you all got some time with your mom today, if not in person, over the phone or in a quiet moment of remembrance. Remembering the best of moms isn’t always easy, sometimes they change and make us forever wonder what happened, what we did to make the angry, why they hurt us. Thats not the case with most moms but if its happened to you, remember, its not about you, you didnt do anything wrong, its in them. I think when a person is hurtful to their children, they’re out of the parent role, and we dont need give them open access to our hearts. We get to protect our hearts like we do with anyone.

The one who holds my heart and i both have work tomorrow, so we loaded up our favorite (only) dog and drove in tandem back across country. Its about a two hour drive filled with big skies, long vistas, tall corn, and cattle of many sorts. At this time of the day, temps were pushing 90, humidity was high so most all animals had found some shade to ride out the heat of the day.

But around 5:20 a turtle decided to make a steady journey across the road. Kind of unusual for that stretch (no water nearby) but there it was.

Three years ago at just that moment, a good man was called home by his maker. V.G. passed on leaving his daughter, the one who holds my heart, to lead his branch of the family, something that i’d bet none of us ever want to do. We grow to depend on the wisdom of our parents even when we’re older, even when they’re gone, we try to think what they might do in this situation, or what they might say about the day.

V.G. had a difficult time healthwise in his last years. Some people get rightfully angry or cranky or just become unsociable during treatment, but i never saw that in V.G. On hearing bad news from a doctor, he’d look at the sky, marvel at the blue, and declare it to be a beautiful day. His optimistic spirit lifted everyone around him, family, caregivers, doctors, they all remember his smile, and the good words he’d offer.

After he passed, i wrote a bit about him on these pages, (http://mjobrien.com/blog/2011/05/16/o-ye-of-little-faith/) and on this day the one who holds my heart lit a candle for him, as we were packing up she went to blow it out, and it just wouldn’t go out, two, three tries and finally it went out, was it a sign from V.G.?

Signs are hard to interpret, so maybe the candle just wasn’t being hit with enough breath to blow it out. V.G. would have remarked, “O ye of little faith” something he’d say often when the improbable happened.

We’re making our plans to make our 1,000 mile weekend soon. We drive west to put flowers on V.G. and his wife Beverly’s grave, go look at their house and see how it looks, and drive through the alley to see how well the new owners are keeping up the yard and garden. V.G. used to feed some turtles in his garden, he got them used to coming right to the door to get their meal, and when the one who holds my heart had to get the house ready for sale, she was greeted by generations of turtles at the back door looking for V.G.’s kindly words and breakfast so today, at the moment of his passing three years ago, there in the road, head up and moving forward was a turtle.

If the candle wasn’t a sign, the turtle was.

Maybe V.G. telling us he’s still with us, telling us to keep moving forward, slow and steady. Believe it, i can hear him say “o yea of little faith”

Be good to each other, look after each other
Keep an eye open for signs, there all around i think