June 21, 2019
My sister Marilyn recently traveled to Scotland and sent me a photo of the “Praying Hands of Mary” (see photo above) which is located in the longest glen of Scotland, Glen Lyon. It is also known as “Fionn’s Rock” and the legend is that Celtic hero Fionn MacCumhaill (Finn McCool) himself split it into two with an arrow. When I saw it, I literally put hands to mouth and muttered to myself, “If ever there was a photo representation of my life right now, this is it!” I received the photo at a time where I felt split in two; on the one hand wanting to be in Northern California to help with family, and on the other hand desirous of spending quality time in the Coachella Valley desert with husband Dan.
Truth be told, I have spent a considerable amount of time worrying whether or not to keep my apartment in the San Francisco Bay area. I’m one of my Mom’s main caretakers and she’s an 8 hour car trip away from the desert – but thankfully, the route is much shorter by plane. God Bless my two sisters, Linda and Marilyn, who live fairly close to her and are devoted and dependable, but they need help and as the eldest, I don’t relish all the responsibilities falling on their shoulders.
Here is my soul, ha ha —
I admit I’m lucky; I have two places that I can call home right now – the small senior apartment in northern California and a little retirement home in the desert. I wring my hands often to determine if I should keep the expense of the apartment up north. It allows me my own space when I am up there, sometimes a month at a time; yet it is a bit of a financial albatross. Of course, I can’t just look at the bottom line – going north to be with family is something that my heart calls me to do and it is joyful and fulfilling to be sure! I’ve managed to keep this bifurcated life going for 8 years.
I thought I had the situation all settled and a decision made. I was going to give up the apartment and let the chips fall where they may; then Mom was hospitalized and I had to fly up north on last minute notice. A woman that I know rather casually in my NorCal ukulele group listened to the account of Mom’s illness and sent me a nice email the next day which was food for thought:
“My Mother’s health began to decline considerably starting at age 89 until she passed away at age 93 in fall of 2018. I needed to spend more and more time helping her. I am wondering if you might want to consider keeping your apartment for a few years because you might be coming up to San Francisco more often than you imagine. I hope your Mother lives to a ripe old age in good health, but you never know.”
I admit I’ve had a lot of fun commuting between these two magical, mystical places – it’s been a merry ride:
I do know that when decisions don’t come easily or aren’t apparent right off the bat, more time may be needed. Sister Linda is fond of saying, “My decision at this time is to not make a decision.”
“Today I know that choosing not to decide IS to decide. It can be very liberating to make a decision. Once the choice is made, I can trust that the consequences will unfold as they should…. I can await them with excitement and hope instead of fear and dread…When the time seems right, I will make the best choice I can and allow myself to enjoy the results.” (Courage to Change, page 134)
I love that: await the outcome of decisions with excitement vs fear!
Here are my heartstrings – all 8 of them that factor into my decision. The song of their individual soul is each a captivating, heavenly and angelic tune that pulls me in like a helpless moth to the flame. No wonder I feel so split! My dear friend Suzette says I’m not split in two; I’m split into eighths!😂
“Go to your bosom: knock there, and ask your heart what it doth know.” – William Shakespeare
Hubby had wanted to move me to the desert during a softball break in the fall but in light of Mom’s recent health crisis, it seemed too soon. Knowing that his softball season runs all year long (!), I asked him if there was another time, perhaps next spring, that worked in his schedule. He thought about it and said how about late May when there’s only casual pick-up games? My ears perked up, my heart lightened, and I replied, “Hey, I like it. The apartment lease renews June 1 and we always get a rent increase. YES, that sounds like a plan.” 😄
And then I skipped away happy in the notion that I have an 11 month reprieve. I think I can manage to stay split in two (or eighths) and balance the checkbook for a little while longer. Anyway, the sun shines quite brilliantly between those cracks, if only I will look within and acknowledge that an inner sun (Higher Power) is guiding my way!
I saw a quote the other day and it really captured a philosophy that I try to live by having faith that all is well and all will be well. It said, “It’s all okay in the end, and if it’s not okay, it’s not the end.” And isn’t that what my wise daughter Meg recently counseled me about: “Mom, you worry too much, things always work out!”
When decisions don’t come easily, may you find the light in your cracks and fissures!
It’s easy to find the light today, Summer Solstice, that longest day of the year with the MOST LIGHT — when the sun is at its highest position in the sky all year. It may hang lower in the sky or higher depending on the season, but the sun rises in its grandeur and majesty every single morning as a steadfast reminder that darkness is always followed by light. We can count on it.
Thank you for allowing me to share what’s on my mind and heart today. ❤️
Happy Summer Solstice!
And… a happy 39th wedding anniversary to hubby Dan and me, whooh! whooh!