Wondering How and When

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Good morning,

While I woke up at my usual early time, I did not get up as soon after awakening as I often do. I finished on night out on my porch and must have fallen asleep in one of the rocking chairs. It seems I must be one of the more elderly members of The Walton’s . When I came in I just crawled into bed and went to sleep. I was hoping for a restful night, but it seems my body had different plans. Between another round of fevers and an unhappy digestive system, it was not one of my more pleasant beginnings to a day. I am still quite sure that I detest vomiting (sorry) more than most anything.

Last weekend was one of the nicest three day periods I have had in a very long time. To celebrate the day in another way with the gifts offered by all of the Galán’s meant more than any words could begin to express. The PowerPoint created by Jordan and Melissa was both hilarious and meaningful; the wine-themed gifts for the house are awesome; and the simple, but profound words, both in speech and writing, still create a lump in my throat. I am blessed.

I think a morning earlier this week might be a preview of what is to come, but I am trying to figure out the balance. Balance is such an important thing and something to which we often pay too little heed. What gives one a sense of balance is ever-changing and for that reason it might be something that is all that more fleeting or hard to accomplish. In addition, I think it is even harder to maintain. I want to manage that balance the best I can in the given situation and that means trying to merely go on doing what I do, but it seems that my body and I are a odds. I am reminded of the Ghost of Christmas Future in The Christmas Carol when Scrooge exclaims, I fear you more than any specter I have yet seen.” I do not think it is the end of which I am afraid, it is more the not knowing exactly how and when. I imagine we all struggle with that idea.

This past week I have had the opportunity to speak with my cousin and I think she is coming to visit. That will be a wonderful thing. I am not sure on the dates, but I am sure that it might be sooner rather than later. That makes me happy. My former colleague, her husband, and son are supposed to come soon also. Though I have not heard the exact dates. There is a lot occurring in the next couple weeks between visits (hoped for) and yearly celebrations, I think there is a lot to prepare for. I think that might serve me well. I am also excited that all the Deckers will be back in town this coming week. I have missed all of them more than words might express. As is often the case, I might not really understand the depth of my missing of them all until they are here and I have a chance to catch up with them. I am still supposed to consider a trip to Spain, but I am not sure because of the larger picture how to manage that. Today is a day where I feel I could sleep most of the day, but that is not how I want to spend my days.

I do have some things I want to get accomplished today, including cleaning the house, cleaning the refrigerator, and I need to go over to the other house and do a little work. I think it is again a question of balance. I need to get somethings done and while I have probably been the most laid-back I have been in years for the last month, I also struggle with that sense of guilt for being lazy. Again, it is always interesting how the head and the heart are not always on the same page (for me it seems they are seldom there). I have so much I still want to accomplish yet this summer, but how much of it will make a difference in the long term? That is always a question for me: what ultimately makes a difference for another person? What might profoundly affect him or her in a manner that their life is significantly (and hopefully positively) changed? I was reflecting on the conversation I had with Sr. Galán yesterday and what he shared about his life and what he thinks about life at this point. It is always interesting to listen to another perspective (and particularly when the person has such passion about life and truth). He has so much to consider. I feel like my life is pretty simple. I merely have to go about my work and my life. Sure, others are affected by me, but not in the same way. Much like when I left Wisconsin, there was one person in particular whose life was profoundly affected, but otherwise, that town is not really any different. I think it is the reality be ultimately being a single person and a person who never had children. While I am sure that a few people might lament my absence, in the long-term or the larger picture, life will continue and I am not so arrogant or prideful to believe that other’s lives will be profoundly altered by my presence or absence. Perhaps that is the most important gift that I or anyone can offer in a profound way. I merely hope that people can go on with their lives.

There is one person in particular that I wonder what it might have been like had she lived longer and that is my grandmother, Louise. I wonder what we might have thought of each other later in life of how we might have interacted. What I do know is that I did not visit her the last time I promised to do so. I remember calling her from a phone booth on Highway 71 (I think that is the highway going into Atlantic, IA). It was next to a Hardee’s Fast Food Restaurant and I called an apologized for not coming to see her. That was the last time I actually ever spoke with her I think. I still have a sweater that she bought me the last Christmas she was alive. I have never been able to part with it. What I know is that I loved her as much as I have ever loved someone, a relative and someone who actually made a profound difference in my life. I wish I still had all the letters she wrote to me in the service. I remember one in particular where she apologized for having to give my sister and me up for adoption. She knew of the abuse we endured and she felt terrifically guilty for subjecting us to that. I am not sure I have ever said this, but Grandma, I forgive you. I love you. What I know now and this is through a pretty amazing conversation I had last week, that I need to forgive more and try to understand more. That will be in a forthcoming post.

While there is certainly more on this version of a “convoluted mind”, I think I will pause.

Thanks for reading.

Michael

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