Some things don’t change

There are the things we take with us and our ways of doing things that we can preserve. They provide a little comfort, continuity, perhaps even a sense of identity and bolstered confidence in a new place.
I like to wake early every day. It gives me a couple hours of quiet before the kids are up. I make coffee, read email, listen to morning bird songs. On the farm, I did the same–the bird songs were different, cardinals and robins and starlings and sparrows and the rooster, while here I have these loud little Arab something-or-others and the parrots. I have here two types of doves, one large and one small, but no pigeons living close by as we had in the silo. On the farm, I’d note the sudden traffic buildup as first-shifters made their way to work, then a lull and another crest as the office 8-to-5ers made their way. Heavy trucks, too. Here, on a quiet street, we don’t have that.
I feed the cats and let them out, just the same as I did with the cats on the farm, and I drink my coffee, sometimes brewing a second round. I make mental lists of things I need to do and put them into an efficient order. I brew a pot of tea for the kids.
I feel like myself.
The sense of surreal can kick in anytime after that. Yesterday, I got news of the losses of two wonderful men in the lives of loved ones. There’s nothing I can do, no way to reach out and offer comfort but to send a note into the ether and a prayer skyward. And that I did, with my forehead on the floor. We are all small and weak and vulnerable as any living thing.
Anyway, morbid as it might be, I do take a little comfort facing my humanity alone in the early morning: I need coffee. My hair is turning gray and falling out. A hundred little aches make me slow and I can’t quite see the page before me. And I miss friends and family and would love just to be near them, but today I can’t.
So perhaps I will walk out to the sea and touch the water, immerse myself in a great body that envelops the earth, touches every coastline and is constantly sweetened by the flow of rivers from sources near home. Today, that is the closest I’ll get.


2 responses to “Some things don’t change

  • jennie

    As I am starting my day, listening to the birds (and my ducklings in the bathroom) tweet, a cuppa coffee, and a little breakfast – I am sending you love! Lots of it, sister. ❤

  • barbbytes


    The distinctions you off in regard to adaptation, comfort, and acceptance are powerful and helpful for those of us who will also be treading onto foreign shores and learning to find our way and retain our selves in the process.


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