The eleventh day in the eleventh month in my half-century birthday celebration brought mostly joy, there was some heartbreak, but you cannot have light without dark. In order to recognize joy, you have to have known the other side.
The whole house was “off” for the Veteran’s Day holiday and like good Americans we slept in, having said our Veteran’s Day thanks the day before. However, at 11:11 at a table full of writers, I said a quiet prayer for all those that gave the ultimate sacrifice and those still serving and in harm’s way. I feel very protective that our current soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and Coasties are not unduly taxed with new conflict on the heels of our new president’s potential actions. I’m remaining calm for now, but his rhetoric is a natural cause for concern. I am at the ready.
I had coffee (No. 12) with my husband (No. 1), and then went off to my regular Friday morning writers cafe to commiserate on work not done and celebrate work already accomplished in my writing life (No. 6). I had a wonderful breakfast (No. 10), lovingly cooked and served by the awesome staff at The Black Dog Arts Cafe (No. 24). One of my writer friends gave me these wicked new earrings that I ended up wearing all day (No. 5).
Then I came home and worked some more on Wilderness Rim. I cleaned out my car to ready for its taxing abilities for that evening. And cleaned out my purse and took a 20-minute nap. I moved laundry along, and hung out with my dogs (No. 3).
Then my friends (No. 5, again!) arrived, both bearing gifts: A serpentine crystal necklace (No. 9) and whiskey (No 11). and we headed for prefunc drinks and nosh at Mama Stortini’s — the crab cakes (No. 10) were to die for. Then we headed off to the Seattle Thunderbirds Hockey game (No. 13). I think we all had fun — I certainly did, even if the ‘birds couldn’t pull out a win against the Calgary Hitmen. There was a couple of really confusing calls that may have helped the ‘birds lose this one.
Then I headed back home to my nice warm and dry bed, where my puppies and husband were awaiting my return.
Despite my apprehension about the future, I fell asleep with gratitude in my heart and a smile on my face. I have a ridiculously blessed life. It does give me resolve to be at the ready to defend such opportunities for others — as I have in the past, as I always will.
I also learned this day that some people have good hearts and were taken for a ride on both sides of the political aisle in this country. None of us is without our failings, but what we do with these mistakes and how we make things okay for the rest of the world…that is worth celebrating, worthy of the joy in forgiveness. However, that forgiveness doesn’t happen without introspection on both sides. My introspection gave me one epiphany: until you’ve actually experienced something, you can only TRY to understand. You can sympathize. However, you don’t really KNOW. Case in point, many of my friends don’t have children. If they do have children, they may not be dealing with #LifewithAutism (Hell, even fellow Autism moms experience something completely different than I do, too, since once you’ve met one child on the spectrum, you’ve met one child on the spectrum). Both my friends who are parents and those who are not are sympathetic to what I deal with daily. They are even very supportive. They try to understand. But, they do not know. They recognize that and it makes their friendship, their support, their love that much more genuine. And I’m grateful that I understand this human condition for both when I’m the one on the outside or the one with the experience trying to be understood.
There were some other things I learned yesterday, but I’m still processing them and until such time as I can coherently put them in words for you to understand…well, we’ll just have to leave it at that.
Fifty years old and I still feel like I’m a student of life. That I’m still figuring it out. At least I have the opportunity to do so.
What are you celebrating or grateful for today?