Recently, I was clicking around in old files, and came upon this photo. The cursive was written by my husband’s late Grandmother, Dorothy. I want to share it with you.

“Open”

I had a friend in high school

Who used to give me a

Daily hug.

I squirmed

And felt uncomfortable.

But it was like a

Vitamin

And brought me a

Connection

That I needed.


This morning I drempt

Of another hug

By a friend I admired.

It was long

And rich.

I felt it in my body

And in my soul.

The best kind of dream.


I do not like to give hugs

In real life

For I fear they will

Reveal me.

My distaste for you

My passion for you

My deep love and need for you

My fear of you

And your judgement of me.


I’ve always imagined

That when I go to heaven

And see Jesus for

The first time

I would like to give him

A hug.

It’s one I’ve been saving

Full of all my longings

My thanks

My pains

And my pleasures.

Will I have a body to

Deliver this hug?

Arms to embrace

A head to bow?


In this time of isolation

I think about the hugs

I want to give

And perhaps those that

Others need.

When this is over

My arms

My heart

Will be open.

Sister hugs

You broke my heart

And I don’t understand

What I did

Or didn’t do

To stop you from loving me.

All along

You’ve had my heart.

I gave it to you

And now a piece of me

Is missing.

I feel its loss,

And wait patiently

For its return.

March 1st is a date that has special significance in my life, one reason being that it is the birthday of my home state, Nebraska.  Last summer as we were driving out of Colorado and into Nebraska along I-80, I was struck again by the beauty of Nebraska that I knew and loved.  With my feet on the dash of my van, in the glowing late afternoon light, I penned this poem.  This one’s for you, love. Happy birthday.

Nebraska

 

(Photo credit here.)

Nebraska

 

O virgin earth

Free and open

Stretch out your arms

Let the wind flow over your body.

Your shoulders lie back

Your frame

Flat and smooth.

Peace and contentment

Smile upon your face

They sky envelopes you.

He caresses you

In love and

Covers you

In strength

Your marriage is right and

Beautiful.

 

Your soil is rich and fertile

Ready to blossom forth

And yield life and bounty.

Your frame simple,

True,

Virtuous,

Strong.

Though not in abundance

You bear faithfully,

Rewarding the gentle rains

With pleasure

And fruit

 

In each season’s change,

You respond with beauty.

In winter

Patience and stillness

In spring

Joy and hope

In summer

Confidence and pride

In autumn

Preparation and foresight.

 

Nebraska:

Often overlooked and

Passed by

Such wealth and treasure

Is hidden

In you!

For what sinews

Make up your flesh

And what threads your

Coverings?

Nowhere is there a

Better match,

A more perfect union

Than she

And her lover.

Naked

Bare

Without disguise

Without costume.

Innocent consummation

In all its loveliness

Earth and sky:

Nebraska.

I usually have some sort of Caleb story for Matt when he comes home from work at the end of the day.  Perhaps I should use my better judgement and keep some to myself, but a recent conversation went like this:

Me: So, Caleb almost gave me a heart attack again today…

Matt: What did he do this time?

Me: Well, I was going to take the kids on a walk.  I was holding Norah, walking out into the garage to put her in the stroller, and Caleb was behind me.  As soon as I hit the garage door button, Caleb sprinted out past me down the driveway as fast as I’ve ever seen him go.  He got all the way to the middle of the street before I could put Norah down, run after him, and catch him!  Thank goodness no cars were coming!  

Matt: We need to get a leash for that kid.

No kidding. This is not the only instance of behavior that drives me crazy.  We generally keep all bathroom doors closed and child locked because, well, you know.  Apparently Caleb has decided he is ready to potty train.  Anyhow, the other day, Caleb used his little potty chair and we’d dumped the contents into the toilet.  I went to his room to grab him a new diaper, and not 20 seconds later as I walk into the bathroom again, I see Caleb: hand in toilet, drawing it up to his mouth to drink.  AAAAAHHHHHH!!!!  At least he likes to flush, otherwise I would probably have used lots of soap in his mouth instead of just the gallon of water I almost choked him with, trying to wash his mouth out.

I think I see a pattern emerging here.  Case in point: tonight I was scrolling through old pictures and found this one of Caleb when he was just under a year.

It seems I’ve been missing the signs for a year now.