Daily Archives: March 11, 2012

Bill

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Flying from Orlando to Lansing last Saturday evening, I pulled a book out of my bag. The Red Book, by Sera Beak,  is subtitled “A Deliciously Unorthodox Approach to Igniting Your Divine Spark”. I’d been working my way through it, and packed it in case I ran out of other reading material. I hadn’t had a chance to pick it up before that. The chapter I was reading was talking about signs and symbols and messages from the universe and paying attention. The card I’d used to mark my spot was an invitation…to my friend Bill’s eightieth birthday celebration. Because of that, Bill was on my mind throughout the plane ride. When I arrived home on Sunday, I learned that Bill had passed away the day before…on Saturday…when I had his invitation in hand…when I was thinking about him…while I was reading about messages from the universe…

Bill and I have been friends for more than 25 years. We used to have coffee together nearly every day. A natural story-teller and a wonderful teacher, he has helped me with dozens of projects and taught me a million things. I am saddened by his death, and will miss him always. We definitely had a connection.

I know that if Bill heard my story of the coincidences of the plane ride and the book and the invitation, he would throw his head back and laugh out loud. He’d say “That’s about the biggest line of bull I’ve ever heard!”

And that thought makes me smile today.

Sheila

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Sheila, July 2011

My sister Sheila, who died unexpectedly last August, would have turned 56 years old on the 1st of March.

Sheila was born in a leap year, barely missing making her appearance on February 29th. This leap year, all of the remaining sisters were together on Sheila’s birthday.

We’re a large group; 14 years separate the oldest and the youngest in our family. That’s practically a generation! We are each unique, and different in many ways from our siblings. On the surface, looking at our lifestyles, politics, careers and interests, it sometimes seems surprising that we all grew up in the same household. Within that household, we all formed different bonds with our brothers and sisters. Each of us carries individual memories of Sheila, based on our own relationship with her.

We all loved her. We all miss her. This year – with laughter and tears and lots of good memories – she was a part of our happy time together.

Off-Track

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I told myself I’d publish one essay a week.

From years of experience, I know better than to set my sights too high. Lists are easy for me. Charts are a breeze. I excel at the planning stages of any endeavor. It’s the follow-through that kills me.

So, one post a week, usually on Sunday. Maybe an extra one here and there for a special event, but no pressure.

And here I am, less than three months in, already off track.

I have a good reason for my neglect: I took a vacation!

Six sisters, having survived one of the worst years of our lives, convened in Florida to celebrate our survival, our precious lives and our constant love and respect for each other. We laughed and cried and walked and played together. We relived old memories and made lots of new ones. We loved the sand, the sun, the water, and each others company. We filled every single day with wonderful experiences! It was a time to catch up with each other, and a time to catch our breath. It was healthy and healing and just plain fun!

I was away from my computer for ten days, from Friday through the following Sunday. During that time, six of us shared one computer. Two of the six were handling business issues via the internet; one of the six was looking for housing and employment; all of us were using the computer to keep up with family back home.

So, here I am, off-track, but still glowing from the experience!Image

In order from oldest to youngest (as we have posed for pictures all of our lives!), my sisters and I: from the left, Brenda, Cindy, Cheryl, Nita, Robin and Amy.