Thursday, July 1, 2010

7/1/10 A new place

Many of you know I am in Iowa City reconnecting with my own soul in a monastic little room overlooking a garden, taking a lengthy retreat from the demands of round-the-clock caregiving,advocacy and management of a dramatically altered financial situation. Word from Chuck is that Mandela has become quite the chef and house manager.

Mandela is home from Princeton this summer,overseeing Chuck's care, working out with Chuck's trainers, taking an ethics class at University of Akron and doing an internship with the NFL Hall of Fame. As his girlfriend Syd says, "What a bum."

Our friends at Goodyear Heights Presbyterian Church have really been what a Christian community is supposed to be -- surrounding us with love and helps, giving Chuck rides to the gym and the doctor, taking him out for lunch. Chuck is now working there three afternoons a week with a job coach, visiting shut-ins, making calls to the homebound, re-learning daily organization and job skills. On workout/water therapy days, he tells me John has him walking and running a full mile again (with his sling on) while Nancy gets him releasing tension and walking more smoothly with her water work.

I have begun work on a second novel. The first one stuttered to a halt last summer with Chuck's injury. My writing mentor (a writing prof I met as a freshman in college) got me creaking forward and now I'm moving again at a decent clip.

Better yet, I'm back to long walks, first thing in the morning, and reconnecting once again with a certain "still small voice" that had grown fainter and all but disappeared in the last several years.

I had re-picked up smoking over the year, acquired a bad caffeine habit and chronic poor sleep patterns. All of this I have released in the last weeks. Lots of good, organic fruits and vegetables, lots of water, rest, prayer, camraderie and friendship.

I recognized that lately I'd been trying to discover and force into being my "big picture" life purpose, to manufacture or build some kind of sustainable life scenario, but now I've been guided to see that my work is to return to living simply, a day at a time, and listening for and trusting Divine Guidance. Make my bed, sweep the floor, say my prayers, take my walks, do my work, love my people.

I've never known less what our lives might look like a year from now, but I've never felt more quietly confident that a good plan is unfolding. Chuck and I are greatly blessed with the abiding love we have for each other, a renewed connection to the Creator and the affection of a gentle, still-attentive circle of friends and family.

No comments:

Post a Comment