This is no ordinary blog for me. It is intensely personal and as a result, I am not sure that I will be able to publish what i am writing. Nevertheless, I am going to try to record something of the day in a way that is both meaningful and respectful of the day and the event.
We have found a very charming room in an Inn just west of the Kangamangus Highway at the entrance to the White Mountains. I know that all of my life, that is as far back as I can remember, I have memories of Mom and Dad and my beloved Memere Nadeau sitting around the greens of a set of small cabins that could just as well have been doll houses for how small and how quaint and how absolutely perfect they were. I have a memory of a large red Coca Cola cooler that had a handle that snapped over the top of the cooler. And, a tin tray about four inches deep kept things like the meats and the butter and the lettuce and below that bottles of beer and soda were kept cold in the crushed ice.
I think I was three years old. One year older than Charlotte and one year younger than Sadie my sweet, ever so charming granddaughters that have brought me such pure joy in the last few years. So, I was saying, I was three years old and we stopped at a place that was called “Clark’s Farm.” How on earth that name popped into my mind sixty one years later is a fascination that I have with the human mind. At Clarks Farm I had an opportunity to feed a live bear. The bear is standing many feet in the air on top of what is a platform. It seems there are no railings but that memory can not be right, nonetheless the bear is a top this platform and using a rope and pulley system you can purchase some “bear” food and put it in the tin pail and hoist the pail up to where the bear is on the platform and he take the food out of the pail with his large paw and eats it.
I am fascinated. Magic could not be a better trick.
Sixty-one years later, I find myself again feeling safe and secure and so loved and I am in the foot hills of the White Mountains and I could be three years old for how a piece of my mind is at peace with my soul. My wonderful grandmother died fifty years ago, my devoted Mom died nearly seventeen years ago and dear, sensitive Dad died twelve years ago. They are here with me today in my heart.
The reason that we are here is a very sad reason. The family gathered in Woodstock, Vermont for a memorial service for my daughter’s companions. The details of his death and the surrounding affect is not really the center piece of this post. What is the center piece is what was said at the service by Josh’s lovely aunt, a Unity Minister from the west coast. She spoke of an energy that lives on, not even so much as a soul living on, but an energy that was uniquely the energy belonging to Josh will live on in so many people in so many ways.
I listened and I was absorbing the idea of energy never diminishing, only and forever transforming; and I felt a comfort for myself and wondered if it was a healing service for my daughter as well. I prayed during the entire service that something from the pulpit would reach her soul at this time in her life. The feeling of energy transforming but never really dying was a strange comfort–despite the very sad reality of the forms we love being gone, energy does linger in a manner that forms can not. I am witnessing that just several hours later where the energy of some sixty years ago is still alive in my memory.
Energy, an ever transforming river speeding by in front of me, always the same river and never the same molecules. But several hours later I find myself in the white mountains that have always given me comfort and then another very strange event took place. As I wandered around the town after we had taken the room at the Inn, I glanced back at the building and another memory flooded me. When my son was sixteen years old he and I had driven to Quebec City in the middle of winter to see the Winter Carnival. On the way there or on the way back, I do not remember for sure, we stopped at an Inn in Woodstock, New hampshire. An old couple from Boston who previously owned a hot dog concession at Fenway Park had just purchased this Inn and they were trying to make a go at a new life.
Bernie was resting and I was writing, something that we are both use to when we are together. He called up from the bed, “did you ever have the strange feeling that you have been someplace before but can not quite make the connection.”
Well, it turns out we are staying at the Inn that Mike and I stayed at when he was sixteen. I remember he being delighted because I let him drive….and at 16 that is still a thrill.
One more time, synchronicity, that uncanny set of circumstances that just can not help but make you feel like some spirit larger than science lurks around our lives, poked its way into my day. When ever we can set ourselves free enough to let in the magic, you can be any age and feeding the bear will illuminate even as dark an hour as parts of this day have been.
I am blessed -. my kids have seven aunts and all of them drove five hours north to be here this morning. In a time when sadness takes a hold, one can only pray that family and friends can hold you up at those moments when it just seems too hard to bare and feels so difficult to even stand.
I am resplendent with gratitude, and anguished by sadness. But as I drive through these early spring hills and catch a glimpse of a white birch forest with snow still covering the ground, I am filled with a desire and a hope that what ever it was that once gave me my faith–I pray that my children and my children’s children inherit that energy and that the very sad passing of this wonderful young man lives on in our memories with the joys and the creativity that he approached his all too short life. And some sixty years from now I can envision someone remembering this day and what it meant and the proof will continue that energy never dies it simply transforms itself resplendent with gratitude both from the perspective of science and spirituality.