This is a very odd time in my life. One day I’m down and out, the next I am crawling back, and the day after I feel okay, only to fall back into the pits again. This is not meant as a complaint, either, just an observation. I well remember this time last year when I was still sleeping in my recliner, dealing with sharp, serious, relentless pain, getting up only to use the bathroom and do physical therapy, needing to ask for ice water and help putting my legs up.
Back then, I expected to fully recover and go back to prison. Now I am working on living day by day, accepting the ups and downs, looking around for what life will bring me next. Life seems in no great hurry, however. I am reminded of the phrase I took on at another bad patch in my life:
Don’t push the river; it’s already flowing by itself.
I picture myself standing thigh high in the Tobyhanna River (my favorite river, in the Poconos), happily being pulled downstream by the rushing current, content to let Her take me where She will. This takes place in mid summer, of course, and I am warm and sure footed! That’s the good thing about memories. I will take what the Goddess offers.
Saturday was the Fourth Annual Neighborhood Olympics. Now, the members of the US Olympic team have nothing to worry about, but we do it up proudly, complete with the younger athletes (all available neighborhood kids) marching down the street, carrying the flag, into Jaime’s yard, followed by the National Anthem and the dedication of the games to all those serving in Iraq, especially the cops and firemen. Then, with all due ceremony, we light the torch (a tiki torch from someone’s backyard), and the Games begin.
Since remnants of Ivan had blown through earlier in the day, we had a somewhat shortened version this year. Usually we start at 1pm with a pie eating contest-one for kids, one for adults, then have lots of kids games, with prizes like candy and small toys, and versions of the same games for adults, minus the prizes. Some games are mixed, adults and kids, and then we move on to other yards for bocce, croquet, and end with an hysterical game of volleyball, one street against the other. All this is followed by a cook out and community meal. Those of us who are not athletic watch and cheer.
This year, under a windy sky, in Jamie’s cold, after-the-rain-soggy yard, we persevered, 41 of us, kids and adults, with kids’ games, volleyball. a bit of bocce, followed by the meal-as always lots and lots of good food. We ended with fireworks, set off by Rene, Joey and Joe. They were wonderful! Our next big neighborhood get together will be our After-Christmas-Is-Over Progressive Dinner.
Have I said that I live in the best neighborhood in the world? We know each others kids' names, and everybody’s dogs, and it is okay for the younger ones to leave their bikes by the side of the road.(The Younger kids, not dogs!) We are all so nosey about each others goings on that a stranger doesn’t have a chance down here. All this, and old houses, and a view of a river. I am blessed by where I live, and truly appreciate it.
Autumn helps. Today is the Equinox, and though we have tipped over towards darkness as the days get shorter, I got a spurt of energy and called the local women’s center. I’m to try babysitting there one evening a week, while one of the groups meet. I also stopped over to see how Glenn, my personal trainer, is coming along with his new studio. The equipment is due to arrive momentarily, so soon I’ll go back to working out- something I actually hate, but have sort of missed this last month. Funny how that is. I guess I really miss Glenn who, after almost a year of my working out, has become a member of my extended family.
Perhaps the river is flowing a little more smoothly, at least for a day or two. On the good days I can feel my feelings flowing like Tobyhanna, sometimes smooth and quiet, sometimes blocked by debris, sometimes pouring joyfully around rocks and over stone, looking for expression and freedom. And I am grateful.
picture of the Tobyhanna River from https:/.../Tobyhanna_eq/ tobyhanna_final.html