Saturday, February 13, 2010

Ordinary days . . .

I should be grateful for ordinary days. The morning begins sunny and bright here in Spokane, a high of 44 today. This would be a respite for family and friends on the east coast, struggling with snow drifts nearly as high as the cars they've dug out, with another, hopefully smaller storm coming in next week.

Our life seems more normal every day. Ordinary. We've been in Spokane under a month now, Allen's making steady but very slow progress. He begins physical therapy next week. The hardest part of recovering from a stroke is, for me, internal. Every time Allen has a headache or is tired, I worry about another stroke. Some days, he does have less energy. Some days, he's almost his old self. He's able to walk for up to about 25 minutes most days. He's reading again. And we have gone to the movies, out to dinner, and will go to Rachel and Nick's next concert on Sunday, Mozart's Requiem. I'm not sure we'll make it through the entire performance, but we'll still hear part.

Some things we used to take for granted, we can't any more. Allen encourages me to connect with our new community, to make it my home. I've gone grocery shopping by myself, took my first Yoga class yesterday, and as I drive around the neighborhood by myself, I wonder if this is my future.

Yesterday I submitted Standing Stones to the literary contest at the Pacific Northwest Writers Association. That was more than stressful, but I learned so much from the process and from critiques by two valued online writer-friends. Of course I found a typo AFTER I sent the sub in. But it's turned in. On time.

I just finished reading Sue Monk Kidd's The Mermaid Chair, a delight I've postponed for several years. But the narrator paints mermaids! The story of Sedna and Asnara appear in the story. The reader is drawn inside a marriage that has for too long been stagnant. Kidd's ability to build sympathetic characters, believable conflicts, achingly beautiful settings, and poignant reflections is infinitely satisfying.

I'm used to posting pictures and impressions of our wild and far flung travels here. Everything has changed. I don't know quite what to write now, perhaps just to consider the ordinary, the amazing gift of each day.

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