Mary Beth Writes

Do you see their faces?

The beautiful woman who took her own life a few days ago. She was an ER doctor as well as director of the Emergency Department in a NYC hospital.

The little 5-year old girl Skyler, whose mom and dad are EMT’s in Detroit. They must have brought the virus home to her. 

Old couples, each of them them holding photos of each other, separated by this terrible disease.

John Prine, Adam Schlesinger, Ellis Marsalis, Terrence McNally

I could go on and on but you have pictures and names in your mind, too. Every day we see and hear more stories of these losses.  (In Vietnam over a period of roughly ten years we lost 58,000 people. As of today, we have lost more than 57,000 Americans to Coronavirus.)

I don’t know what it does to us to see faces who are gone, hear the grief in their loved ones’ voices, read and hear part of the stories of the famous and the ordinary people who have died and are dying.

But if this is a diary of what we are encountering in this time of quarantine from Coronavirus contagion, then we have to think about what it means to us personally and collectively to lose so many people so quickly. When it didn’t need to be this devastating. When the loss is real, the anger is real, and then back to devastating grief.

Sometimes I feel as if the news pelts us, like hail. We are changing, I am sure.  

This morning the weather was mild and sometimes there was even a sheen of light and sunshine, so I spent three hours outside, mostly in my yard.  I dumped out onto a tarp the garbage bin of the semi-composted stuff Len and I had discarded since last September. Lots and lots of coffee grounds and eggshells, veggie and fruit trimmings.  Next year we will not put citrus rinds in the bin. Live and learn.

The next bin was stuffed with leaves. Then there was the bucket of ashes from burning sticks all weekend.

I spent much of my morning dumping, mixing, and carrying buckets of this slurry to the places where I want to plant vegetables later in the spring. I decided gardening isn’t about "making things happe". It’s more like being a church or theater usher.  One ushers the dirt and seeds into helpful places and then ushers the weeds back out to where they can congregate in a dump.

I guess I'm a dirt facilitator and earth usher.

I have five miles on my pedometer this evening. I’m out energy, words, and thoughts. 

What did you facilitate today?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I made French bread. First time in more than 40 years. I may make bread more often now.
Mary Beth's picture

Wow! Where were you 40 years ago and why did you make it then and for whom? Making bread isn't nearly as hard as convincing one's self to do it. IMHO.

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Advent Light Post 12-4-2020

Like likes like.

I received this (above) lovely photo from Susan W of an old-fashioned city lamp seen through trees at night.

It made me recall the pix Karen P sent of her son and daughter-in-law at their wedding a few years ago. They lit and sailed paper lanterns propelled by small candles which (hopefully) flickered out when they flew high enough.

Which of course, reminded me of the paper lanterns at my kids’ wedding.

I don’t walk around noticing spheres and globes, but the image is just unusual enough to bring similar images to mind.

Advent Light Post 12/3/2020

The photo is Karen P's mom, Joan, who has been in quarantine in an assisted living residence since March. Her birthday party was a few months before all this began. Light for hope. Hope for light.

...

Yesterday I wrote “I liked figuring out the best way to position my stance in order to frame whatever it was I wanted to focus on.”

Point of View. 

Advent Light Post 12/2/2020

Len has been taking photos since he was a college newspaper reporter/photographer; (University of Chicago and University of Calgary). He has photos that he took from Willis (it was Sears then) Tower while it was under construction. Len had a journalist pass so he called to see if he could “do a story” and they didn’t ask if he was 20 yet, so he got the gig. When (if) he finds those photos, I will put some here.

As long as I have known him, Len has owned a camera. I think we are now on #3. He brought to our marriage the tripod that he still uses.

Advent Light Post 12/1/2020

(The photo is of headlights making a dotted line on the cemetery fence.) 

...

Oh that morning! Len drove us like crazy across Chicago to the hospital where we would birth our first child.  It was a very clear, very cold December morning, kind of like what’s outside my window right now. 

That same evening I was wheelchaired back out of that hospital. When the lobby doors slid open, the world had become night and the driveway vapor lights lit a blizzard of whirling snow.

It was a completely different world. Yes it was.

Advent Light Post 11/30/2020

Today is Len’s birthday and to celebrate being born on the last day of November in the upper Midwest, he is out on his bike right now. It’s spitting snow, there are 20-30mph winds, and the real-feel temp is 20. He has on both pairs of his bicycling pants. He also has a slice of pumpkin raisin Bundt cake (hmmm, I wonder who baked that) in his bike’s little trunk. 

Happy Birthday to the kind of guy who, when a girl invites him to attend the Sunday school class she teaches - comes to that Sunday school class. A rare man, indeed. 

Advent Light 11/28/2020

Tomorrow, Sunday, is the first Sunday of Advent. 

So first of all, like I said before, I’m preaching. I think you can listen to the whole service starting at 9:30AM, if you go to https://www.uniteduuc.org/ .  There is usually a link there that you have to click, when you click it, it says something about YouTube, so click that link, too. Otherwise, by Monday (maybe earlier, I don’t know who does this or when) it will show up on YouTube at United Unitarian Universalist, Waukesha, and my name.

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