Addressing What Really Matters

Dear Friends,

I woke up this morning with the sun shining brightly on my face. I had a
hunch that I had slept longer than usual. Instead of gathering the mental
list of things to be done today (writing, watering the plants, sweeping the
porch, etc.) I kept still and listened to the random sounds of the morning.
I enjoyed the experience, appreciating that I would miss it deeply if I
found myself in a different setting or circumstance. This was a moment
that mattered, a moment when I could discipline myself to be present, to
gather the strength to live a day in grace, with no agenda or expectation.

On Friday, I spent a couple of hours weeding my almost-bare garden. It
does have one thriving, young fig tree and a mini-plantain tree but it is
not what I envisioned when we brought dirt in last year. The rains began
with the pandemic’s restrictions, severely limiting our opportunities to
visit nurseries for seed or young plants we could grow. My attempts to
keep it plant-ready are challenged by weeds that have mastered every
survival skill and make me long for a cast-iron back. At present, I am
grateful for the clean, sharp garden tools at my disposal.

This morning I observed the beauty of the landscape and inhaled the
mingled aromas of the flowers in season with the brewing coffee and the
scrambled eggs in the kitchen. I wondered what it would be like if the
current world-wide feeling of loss and pain associated with Covid-19
deaths would be with us forever. No one can answer that right now. We
need to take some deep breaths. We need to sit with the silence of the
compulsory isolation to slow down inside as well as outside. We need
to imagine and plan how we want to live our days when we turn the
corner, which I know we will.

I am astounded by the extreme bad behaviors on display around the world.
I am also inspired by what has been alleviated on grassroots levels in many
communities when they stopped being captive to a dangerous comfort zone
of whining and waiting for governments to step up in their favor. Strength
and refuge came from one another as folks mobilized and showed up in large
and small ways when the storm was raging. In doing the opposite of what
they normally would, communities are scattering seeds of empathy, planting
trees of hope, clarity and goodness.

May we all have a good day and an excellent week, Marietta

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