Monday, December 29, 2014

Starting Over

Here we come, 2015, a New Year with a New Beginning. Every year at this time it feels like I’m starting over. 2014 has been a shedding year, much like brushing my dog, CoCo, when every season begins: her wooly coat thinning with each tuft of clumping hair I remove until I have a pile of red, silky angel hair that I throw into the wind. Sometimes I see birds swoop down and pick up a strand to line their nests as they prepare to usher in their offspring with the approaching season.
Once I had a sister who said she raised me until I was five years old, although I do not remember that. My mother gave birth to me at 40 and took to her bed with post-partum depression., removing herself for five years from the family. Beth was 13 years older than I and could do everything better than I could. She could paint and cook and she was quite beautiful with blue eyes that reflected the depth of the ocean. Over the years we lost touch and reconnected when I was 30. Beth had married at 18, raised 3 boys by herself, divorced, moved to California and then went on to become an IT engineer. Her house had burned down and her second marriage had ended with his addiction. During a visit with her while recounting one of her experiences, I asked her: “Don’t you ever get tired of starting over?”
Beth smiled and chuckled slightly, saying: “No, because that is what life is about. Starting over.”
Beth died of lung cancer when I was 49 and I was going through breast cancer. I never got a chance to say goodbye. We were literally calling each other on the phone and telling each other our diagnosis one minute and she was gone the next. I recovered and she did not.

Sometimes it is hard to imagine that with every shedding there is a new beginning and eventually, something to be gained. Often it is a remembrance of someone lost and their words of wisdom with a glimmer in their eyes. Sometimes it is selling all your belongings with an illusion of freedom and trusting only in love to propel you forward.
I feel the love when I look into the eyes of my partner or down at my hands that ache after a year of hard work. I look ahead at the path before me and see it strewn with CoCo’s angel hair and rocks that look like jewels. I look at the things I’ve created and the thoughts I’ve created in my mind that keep me asking questions.
Bring it on, 2015, let’s create (a dream).