Thursday, November 4, 2010

Birth-Death

I am so honored that so many of my blog-land friends shared with me about their intent and their affection for me.  I feel so close to so many of you and I needed those affirmations.  "thank you"   :-)  I have been a tad vulnerable lately - October has it's own historical agendas and as much as November is my most favorite month, it too carries it's sorrow. When November arrives I am quieted by the naked trees, the darkened earth and the dried leaves blowing about in the gray wind. I  am inspired to light a fire in the wood stove and simmer hearty soups and stews.  I feel the promise of snow in the air and I hold tight to the quilts and comforters to keep the chill off my body as I curl up on the couch and watch the sky deepen and the naked branches sway-  almost reaching for the leaves that once were attached. I feel safe inside - nothing can harm me in here.  As November 9th draws near I am called to honor two monumental occasions - my Mom's birthday (she will be 87), and my nephew's 'death-day'.  (he was just 32).  The two forces collide every year.  We gather as a family to honor both -  and the power of these life-changing realities often brings us to tears, always to song, and moments of celebration and darker moments of "why".  But together we join - in honor and memory.  This year Skipp and I are making a lasagna and bringing it over to my Sister's/Mom's place.  Her other two sons will be there, and my Jen and Dolan - my Mom, of course, - and also my sister's brother-in-law. As most of you recall, my sister lost her husband of 40+ years, two years ago, come this January, - so having his older brother be with us is quite special.  My sister's sons name is 'Clayton' - he is also my God child.  My Mom's name is 'Louise', or her Italian name is 'Liberata'.   If you can, on November 9th, stop and raise a glass or say a prayer for both of them,  thanks.  :-)

Thanksgiving is my most favorite holiday.  We are already planning our strategy to shop, prepare and serve. My stuffing recipe is, well, amazing - if I do say so myself.  :-) I am getting ready to write my "Why I Am Thankful for You' letters that I write every year for anyone who sits at our Thanksgiving table.  Some years were tough given the variety of characters my daughters were dating at the time.  Oh my!
 
The rain is pounding down today as I wait for a dear, dear friend to visit.  Seems she, like so many of us, is in transition. I value and appreciate that we are solid - no transitions but rather a firm hold on what is right and good between best friends. What else can I say?  Perhaps only to tell you that I believe  all is as it should be and that each day, every breath and every step taken is a gift - every hug, life giving, every expression of love - a blessing, To all f you I send  hugs and love. 

 

42 comments:

Bernie said...

Absolutely will remember your mother and nephew on the 9th. I am so pleased you are doing okay and will be surrounded by love on this happy/sad anniversary.....:-)Hugs

Gail said...

HI BERNIE

"thank you
SO much - and yes, surrounded by love indeed and good food and wine too. :-)

Love to you always
Gail
peace.....

Lisa said...

Dear Gail,

What a great post. Right from the heart. I feel as though I was sitting on the coach with you by the fire.

Sigh, What a tough day you have ahead of you. BUT! what a great way to celebrate your mom's birthday. November 9th...

Your Italian family celebrates like the Irish do. TOGETHER!!!!! So beautiful! Thank God we have each other right? I too have always loved this time of year, the morning runs, cool crisp days and rainy nights. Now, I worry about my mom and how we will get through this holiday season. I guess like you guys WE will get through it together one day at time.

I really loved this post! It felt like a letter to me :)

Much Love to you!

Lisa

Gail said...

HI LISA-
Oh my, such wonderful words to me about hou this impacted you. I am humbled by your experienc3e. And yes, you and yours will get through whatever, together. I am so glad you felt you were right with me - wonderful.
Love to you
Gail
peace.....

Choices said...

It is wonderful that you have love ones around you for the happy and sad times. You are surrounded with love. Beautiful!
Take care.
Smiles.

Gail said...

HI CHOICES-ANNE

So nice to see you :-) and oh yes, there is much love to comfort us all.

Love to you
Gail
peace.....

Teacher's Pet said...

Gail....family times are so special...and I can read much love...much much love in your blog.... Please know that you are surrounded by friends far and near...and I am so honored to be among them.
As I read about the fire...and the warm stew and soup....the 'promise of snow'....sigh...well, those are comfort words to my heart....absolutely. Know that I'm thinking of you, Gail. Love to you from Jackie

Wanda..... said...

Thanksgiving is a most happy time of family gathering, but the absence of loved ones is so pronounced. My mother's birthday(24th) falls on Thanksgiving some years, I miss the gathering at her home.

Will think of you and your family on the 9th, Gail.

Diana said...

Hi Gail,
I so agree with you about November! But since Thanksgiving Day is also my favorite holiday, all is not lost!
Actually November is so busy, it goes by quickly.
I will be thinking and praying for you on the 9th. Please give your mom an extra special birthday hug for me.
Love Di ♥

Cinner said...

Gail, glad you will all be together. I will say a prayer for both your mom and your nephew. This post was beautifully written my dear. hugs and love to you all. so glad your physical went well. peace and love.

Gail said...

HI JACKIE-

I would love to curl up on the couch with you and just talk and laugh and cry and share and pray - the fire would warm our hearts even more and the smell of home made stew will enhance our appetites. There is much love her as only someone such as yourself that is all love would so enjoy.

Love to you
GGail
Peace.....

HI CINNER-
I am so glad to have you visit - I have missed you, been worried even. Please stay close.
Love you girl - "hey"
Gail
peace.....


HI WANDA-
Oh I can barely imagine the loss you feel in November with your Mom having passed on the 24th. :-( We are so filled with gratitude to have our Mom here especially given her illness. phew. Your memories of Thanksgivings with your Mom I know are so very precious and dear.
Holding you close this month and always.
Love Gail
peace.....

Gail said...

HI DIANA-

Oh yes, November is SO busy that it flies by. phew.
so appreciate your hugs and prayers - you are wonderful.

Love Gail
peace.....

Eileen said...

Special occasions/dates and holidays always bring about a mix of emotions. We too have loved ones that share birth/death days, and the celebrations are always bittersweet. And as Thanksgiving approaches I'm reminded so much of the Blessing of having had loved ones in my life, but I'm also so sad that so many of them are no longer here to celebrate with.

I can't say that I long for the past, I'm usually always content to be where I am in life and I'm happy with whatever age I am, but there is something about the holidays that does make me yearn for life as it once was so long ago.

God Bless you and your family, Gail.
Love to you,
Eileen

Gail said...

HI EILEEN-

your words - so beautifully written as they share of contentment and blessings of the present and also longing for what was. I,like you - count my blessings. Happy November to you and yours

Love to you always
Gail
peace.....

Children with out voices said...

Happy Thanksgiving! I am reminded of our human vulnerability and blessed to be able to share the moment.

Gail said...

HI CWOV-

So nice to see you :-) Yes, vulnerable and blessed.

Love to you always
Gail'
peace and hope for us all

Rebecca said...

It sounds like you are in a "good place" personally, right now. I think your presence at the family gatherings this month will bring much comfort, stability, and hope. I marked my calendar to pray on the 9th.

Peace & hope to YOU!

Gail said...

HI REBECCA-
So nice to see you here :-) ANd thank you so much for that lovely compliment - wow!! My Mom always says that when I arrive there is sunshine. I am humbled.

Love to you
Gail
peace.....

Wonderingsoul said...

Dear Gail...
I know how mixed this time of year is for you. I remember this time last year...
Please know that you will be in my thoughts an prayers.
Your wriying is so beautiful in this post. I wish I could come and just sit with you by that fire.

Hope you can feel the spirits os all of us who love you...

xxx

Cinner said...

Gail, I have sent an email, having a bit of issues with my computer, I hope you get this last one as I have vented bigtime, you opened up a ball of yarn. lol. my sis is here and then will go visit her for a few days, all is well, think of you often. I will try to keep better in touch. love you, cinner

Just Be Real said...

Gail, thank you for sharing those two special and important days. Sending hugs your way......

Lola said...

thanks for sharing this, Gail.
I will stop November 9th and go to my favourite church.

Your family gathering seem very special.
:)

Whitemist said...

It is bitter and sweet at the same time, did you know my birthday is the 9th of November.
I have trouble in that fall last so little time.
I do not know which is my favorite holiday - mostly because i get to cook and eat on all of them and food is one of my favorite things....
Peace to you Gail
Bless you.

Gail said...

HI WHITEMIST-JOEY

Oh wow, yes I remember now. And "Happy Birthday" to you too come this Tuesday.:-) I love food too Joey, cooking and eating mmmmmmmm. Enjoy your birth month.
Love you man
Gail

Gail said...

HI LOLA-

I SO appreciate thaat you will share in our family gathering by going to your favorite church and remembering us. Wow, I am so honored Lola, really.
Love to you my friend
Gail
peace.....

Gail said...

HI JBR-

so happy to se you here :-) and "thank you" for sharing in our family gathering and for sending along hugs.
Love to you
Gail
peace.....

Gail said...

HI CINNAER-

I didn't get your email as of yet :-( Please re-send it, ok?

Thanks for coming back I love you lots. Enjoy your visit with you Sis - we will catch up soon.
Love you girl "hey"
Gail
peace.....

Gail said...

HI WoNDERINGSOUL-

I love when you stop by - it feels so hopeful, always. And oh yes, we would enjoy the warmth of the fire, and one another for hours. Any time.

Love to you
Gail
peace......

Rose Marie Raccioppi said...

For all you express here, known be your heart, for all you loving share, known be your soul, ever touched by grace and care. And so if you revisit, "The Quiver of the Grass" it is dedicated to you dear Gail.

Much love,
Rose Marie

Gail said...

ROSEMARIE_

your compassionate words allowed tears to overflow - and yes, "the quiver of the grass........
"hallelujah" thank you so very much for 'knowing'.
Love you always
Gail
peace.....

Tramp said...

To mark birth and death together is certainly an admission of vulnerability. Many people here visit the graves of their departed loved ones on November 1st; it is also an event that brings families together.
We have started to light our woodstove in the evenings which Lady enjoys as much as we mere humans but it is unseasonably mild at the moment.
...Tramp

Gail said...

HI TRAMP=

Yes, November 1st - a time to connect with those who have passed. Although my Mom talks to my Dad and my nephew often. :-) And we have lit a fire as well - some sleet expected Monday so it will be a good day to take the chill out with a nice cozy fire. Gracey has NO interest.
So good to see you my friend./
Love Gail
peace.....

Se'lah said...

my dearest Gail,

i always try to celebrate each moment of life be\cause tomorrow is promised to noone...life moments are blessings and it's nice to see that you have been blessed with some precious ones.

sending lots of positive vibes and prayers your way.

one love.

Gail said...

HI Se'LAH

So nice to have you stop by with all your love and understanding which I so appreciate. And yes, I have been truly blessed. Amen
Love to you
Gail
peace and hope for us all

Lola said...

Hi Gail,

I hope you don't mind as I had time this morning (I know it' not today...) so I went to my favourite church in Milan and lit a candle both for me and for you & your family.
I prayed for you all, Gail.
I send you my love

Gail said...

HI LOLA?

Mind? Oh my - I am so thrilled that you lit a candle for us and for you too - it feels SO right and hopeful. "thank you"
Love to you always
Gail
peace.....

Rose Marie Raccioppi said...

Thinking about you and looking forward to hearing about your Mother's Birthday - a warm hug sent from chilly Tappan, NY. Hug to Mom and congratulations for all the years of living and sharing love.

Best always,
Rose Marie

Gail said...

HI ROSEMARIE

so nice of you to stop back. I will email you about our day with Mom -it was eventful, loving and blessed.
Love Gail
peace.....

Souldose said...

Reading this made me feel like I was looking into your soul, may the angels look after you my friend

Gail said...

HI SOULDOSE-

oh my, the power of your words touched me so deeply. "thank you"

love Gail
peace.....

Lisa said...

Dearest Gail,

I love being your bloggy friend! You leave the best comments:)

Thank you!!!!!!!!

I do hope your family and YOU are doing well.

Much Love to you!

xoxox, Lisa

Gail said...

HI LISA -
right back atcha!! :-)