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A Monday meander: Love and evolution

The marsh during the blue hour.

Love is alone sufficient by itself; it pleases by itself, and for its own sake.  It is itself a merit, and itself its own recompense.  It seeks neither cause, nor consequences, beyond itself.  It is its own fruit, its own object and usefulness.  I love, because I love; I love, that I may love.

~ Bernard of Clairvaux

What we love we shall grow to resemble.

~ Bernard of Clairvaux

On Saturday morning I received the above photograph (which I’ve altered considerably for the sake of anonymity) via text message on my phone.  It came with a message that I am going to paraphrase (because I’m pretty sure the sender was 1) in a hurry, and 2) using voice to text which does some odd things.  Basically the message was:  It’s over.  I’ve become my Dad, making pancakes for children on Saturdays while listening to dad rock.  I laughed.  The message was from M the Younger.  I responded:  It happens to the best of us.

Sunrise on the day of the Super Blood Blue Moon (or whatever they were calling it). The moon was covered by clouds that morning, but the sunrise was gorgeous.

When I went out for a walk in the woods a little while later, I got to thinking about age and aging again. (Previous post on the subject is here, if you’re wondering why I used the word “again.”)  This time around, I thought about the various stages we go through in life, about how there are times when we try so desperately to fit in and then, a few years later, we’re sure we are different from everyone else (and nobody understands us); about the years of learning to be an adult and then, if you’re in this category, a parent.  The kids grow up and you learn how to be an individual within a couple (if you’re still a couple or part of a couple), learn to be someone other than a parent, and maybe, eventually, you reach a stage where you see all of this as part of one Big Picture and start to realize how much alike we all are even though we may be in different stages or never pass through some of the stages at all.  In the normal course of events, we evolve.  (Or most of us do.  There are some, even high up in government life, that still act like toddlers.)

Sunrise back on the ranch.

Aside from all of that, it was great to see a Saturday morning tradition being passed on to the next generation.

Footprints on the dock (raccoon, I think).

A lot of things have come up for us since my father-in-law’s death.  One of the things that stands out for me is something M said.  “We’re the old people now,” he stated in response to a comment I made.  I hadn’t thought about it before, but he’s right.  Or almost right in my case since my father is still with us.  On M’s side of the family, the grandparents, parents, aunts, and uncles have all died.  M’s generation is the oldest now.  It was a mind-blowing and mind-expanding statement for me.  It was another step up the ladder of my own evolution, and it gave me another glimpse of the bigger picture of life.

Getting ready for InCoWriMo.

In other news:  My participation in InCoWriMo has been going well so far, but it’s early days.  Five pieces of mail have gone out.  I’m doing this off-the-cuff, so to speak, without a list or a schedule.  Hopefully I will have enough addresses to get through the month.  If not, I can find some at the InCoWriMo website.  Or, if you’d like a card, letter, or postcard from me, let me know.  I’ll email you for your address and send something out to you.

One thing I learned right off the bat is that I’ve forgotten how to write a letter.  It’s been awkward, to say the least.  That’s especially true when writing to people I don’t know.  I’m never sure where to start.  I am hoping that by the end of the month words will flow from my pen a little easier.  It makes me half wish I was a poet or an artist, someone who could paint a picture with few words or a few strokes of a pencil or pen.

Another gorgeous sunrise.

A lot of us in the U.S. were busy watching the Super Bowl last night (American football).  I was thrilled to watch the Philadelphia Eagles win.  I’m from the Philly area and honestly, I can’t stand the New England Patriots so it was equally as good to watch them lose.  Is that terrible?  Perhaps so.  I’ll work on that.  Someday.  In the meantime, it’s about time the Eagles had their big win.  I’m sure lots of my family and friends are still celebrating today.

In the morning clouds.

I don’t really have too much more to ramble about.  It’s been quiet here on the ranch.  Well, mostly quiet.  The wind has had a lot to say lately.  I don’t remember it being this windy, this often, during our first year or two here.  I’m not sure if that’s faulty memory or if the weather really has been different this past year.  Whatever the case, the wind is huffing and puffing again today and we’re going through another cold spell.  It looks like the next ten days or so will bring a pattern of cold and sunny followed by a warm-up with rain after which it will be cold and sunny again.  Lather, rinse, repeat.

Ghost clouds in the morning.

In addition to weather-watching, I’ve been reading.  I’m currently reading The Ghost Bride.  I am about halfway through the book and enjoying it so far.  It was given to me as a gift at Christmas, and it was a good choice (thank you to my oldest son and his wife, but probably mostly his wife as I think she probably picked it out from my extensive reading list).  The story includes Chinese folklore (I love folklore of all kinds, from any culture), a bit of romance, and a mystery or two to be solved.  The writing is beautiful and I’m finding the story enchanting.

Have you read any good books lately?  I am thinking about joining in with the NPR-New York Times book club called Now Read This.  I may not actively participate, but would like to read the first two books they’ve picked out.

Criss-crossing the sky.

I reckon that’s about it from me on this cold, windy, sunny Monday.  Thank you for meandering along with me.  I’m thinking of going out to the dock for sunset this evening.  If you’d like to join me, sunset is scheduled for 5:31 PM.  We’ll need to get there about twenty minutes prior to that to watch the sun go down behind the trees.  It’s going to be cold and windy so be sure to bundle up.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

Abstract art above.

A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy:  546)  The many colors of sunrise and sunset.  547)  Relearning how to write a letter or a postcard.  548)  Exploring the trails behind the pond.  549)  How quickly the laundry dries on the line during these windy days!  550)  Loving, because I love.  Do we really need any other reason?  I don’t think so.

Twisted cloud.

Author:

Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, wife, sometime poet, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She finished a 365 commitment to get outside every day in 2011, and has turned it into a lifelong commitment taking one or more walks each day. Robin will continue to share her walks through her words and images on Breezes at Dawn. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are in the midst of renovating the house and property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

19 thoughts on “A Monday meander: Love and evolution

  1. I love the altered photo at the top, and the idea that a tradition continues. How lovely!
    As we get older, I think most of us reflect on aging, and also perhaps our ancestors, traditions, etc.
    The parade is scheduled for Thursday–I’m staying out of Philadelphia that day! 🙂

    I just finished Louise Penny’s latest book. I haven’t read the earlier ones, only the last two, but they are wonderful–so much more than mysteries. Her writing is beautiful, and you can’t help but care about the characters.
    I also recently read a book called Fever, by Deon Meyer, a post-apocalyptic novel set in S. Africa. I enjoyed it. It’s sort of a father-son story told by the son.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I too was happy to see the Patriots lose, but I generally do prefer the underdogs. As to writing letters, for me it’s the same as emailing or having a conversation but with a different delivery method. Unless, of course, it’s a matter of business.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely skies you’ve been having lately. Yes, the weather has been unpredictable and matter of fact, that is what I’ve come to expect! To my mind, we are having a ‘real’ winter, meaning cold with varying amounts of snow, ice or rain. Giving up the idea of any sort of ‘normal’ seems what we’ll need to do. I think we are well past that and’ adapt’ is the task we must accept.
    Having lost my parents young, we’ve been the oldest generation for a while, but the consolation for that loss was never having to care for a debilitated or ill parent. I come from a big family, born at the tail end. I was 8 when my sister married, so I learned to write letters young. They always started, “How are you? I am fine.” LOL. I wrote about the pets, the weather, what we ate, school, where we went and usually drew something. My sister gave me back some of those early letters and what a hoot they are to read! A glimpse into my childhood long gone.
    I hope I’ll be getting one from you – hint-hint! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yes….the ‘adult orphan’ thing is strange when you first face it. And being the ‘adults’ of the family is also strange, and feels somewhat of a responsibility. We four have figured out we can’t be ‘the kids’ anymore. It’s a lot of adjusting when it happens to you and takes time to sink into the role. Hugs to M and his family, and of course to you too, as you also loved M’s dad.

    I used to love letter writing. My mom and her mother were both letter writers. I was too until email came along. I really like the concept of a month of sending letters, though I don’t know about sending them to strangers. Though I did do that Saturday, to a woman whose mom was killed in a crash with a semi that was similar to the way my dad died. It was a short letter, typed because my handwriting is so terrible. I apologized for that in the letter. Told her that even though the letter was typed it wasn’t a form letter, it was a letter from one daughter missing her parent to another daughter with a similar loss. I hope she responds.

    We got a ton of snow yesterday. That’s all I’m going to say about weather.

    See…this post is now starting to look and sound an awful lot like a letter.

    hmmmm….

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Dawn. 🙂 I used to love letter writing, too. I’m struggling with it right now, but I think that’s because I’m struggling with writing in general. This too shall pass.
      I know that a handwritten letter is said to be more personal, but I’ve received some lovely typed letters that were equally as personal (and easier to read sometimes!). I can’t know for sure, but I think the woman you wrote, one daughter to another, will understand why you typed it and appreciate that you took the time to reach out to her. ♥

      Like

  5. I remember my husband and his brother saying they felt like “orphans” when both parents were gone- though they were in their fifties. So far we are fortunate to have aunts and uncles in their 90’s, and have not reached the top yet- but it allows me to think we are younger than we are… I keep thinking they are in their 60’s and I am 40- rude awakening when I realize the passage of time. Beautiful images as always Robin. Have a good week

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Those pictures are insane. And I definitely laughed at your son’s comment. We all come to a point where we – gasp! – realise we have become our parents. Things spew out of our mouths that we swore never would…
    I, too was going for the Eagles. Simply because they were the underdogs. And deep-down, I don’t give a rat’s patootie anyway 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I don’t know how you hear about these projects like the letter writing or the New York Times book club. The book you’re reading sounds like my kind of book.

    I’m sorry about your father-in-law’s death, Robin. My husband’s parents are also both gone, but my dad is still alive; we definitely feel the aging as we become the oldest generation in the family.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Cathy. 🙂 I usually hear about these things as I travel through cyberspace. Sometimes from Facebook, sometimes from blogs, and in the case of the NY Times – PBS book club, through the NY Times. I get their book review email every week.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I joined the book club on Facebook and am now listening to the audiobook of Killers of the Flower Moon. Since I’m walking so much to build my strength and endurance for the Camino, audiobooks will be my friends for the next 6-7 months! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Would love to borrow the book next time we see each other – if/when you’re done with it!
    YAY EAGLES! My favorite thing is Foles both catching and throwing TD passes and being the only QB to do so in a SB – with the icing on the cake being Brady dropping the pass to him AND then fumbling the ball leading directly to the Eagles’ last score. Oh yeah!

    Liked by 1 person

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