Hand on heart in silence with soul friend Patience I prayed to love without judgment. Life with Jean, Michael, Judah and friends plus Seren care provided great love practice on my two visits there and theirs here between for Christopher and Mary Susan’s wedding. Three weeks later we rejoiced with Rhonda, Karen, two Betsys and all at Dave and Charissa’s wedding. In Group Spiritual Direction at the Bellfry Retreat and a season of weekly Shalem sessions I discovered loving listening, heart-based responding. With Christians Practicing Yoga my whole body breath prayer became “Jesus, teach me Love” Our paths crossed: Where you headed? asked Harriet. To my childcare job with Lukas Vega, I smiled. It’s Love, it’s all Love! she replied. YES. Falling asleep I pictured dear ones representing each Mulled Word— friends, family members, authors. Beside the weddings Jim and I grew in love on four 10K walks and another Chincoteague trip. For love of Mother Earth I joined pipeline protesters, sang We Shall Overcome in the paddy wagon and paid bail.
Treasured words from 2 y.o. Lena — I love you, you’re like Oma; question from 3 y.o. Felicity — Are you Mary Poppins; advice from 75 y.o. widow at the pool — I’ll soon be out and your fearless leader can join you, enjoy him while you can; Facebook post from 32 y.o. Jean — Goin to Hawaii and we’re gonna get ma-ar-ied; from 12 y.o. Judah — I love my life and my family; farewell from 68 y.o. friend Mary VanderHart — See you Marj; Barbara Simon’s Rite of Passage Library Story I portrayed in Transition Theater’s Greenbelt Voices; and the Mullstream question— How Can I Keep from Writing.
Stayed sane writing then revising Psalm poems. Savored serene moments in each season: solitude one Ashland Autumn Morning, Jean, Michael and Judah gone overnight; solace one Greenbelt Winter Afternoon opening boxes of Mulled Words, my first book; tearshine in Spring Prayers—indoors, out, alone, at home, away, with Jim, Mom and others; Summer Shalom with Judah in six states, then holding and rocking baby Seren.
“So teach us to count our days that we may gain a wise heart” 152 days featured time with 3 to 4 year old Lily Ung-Weaver. Grandma Gifter, thanks for 53 days with 10 year old Judah. All-Loving One, how You grew my love with Mom here 25 nights total, Joyce 28; on trips with family 17, with Jim 24 nights! All-Wise One, what did I learn in 88 Bible Studies, book discussions or Sunday School classes that year of three all-too-soon funerals, of Clara and Stephen’s wonderful wedding and of Jim’s and my tenth anniversary?