~thankful thursday~ if the weather holds

A non-exhaustive list of classes I’m currently not getting an A in:


Being a friend




The list goes on. Good thing I’m not taking any of these classes for a grade. This will be my last thankful Thursday post for a while. It was helpful for me to document the fast-moving current events of the early phase of the pandemic as a way to keep myself integrated, and now I feel like I’m past the urgent-care emotional triage stage and moving beyond it into that more integrated place. How I write tends to shift with the changing seasons and this year is no different, even though 2020 is very, very different, as years go. Stay tuned for summer, which will not be devoid of gratitude, but will most likely be its flighty, fickle self, rushing by much too quickly for my liking, but I will do my best to still stuff a few of its choicest fruits into the canning jars here.

~Week of 5-22 to 5-29~

I am grateful for the return of beautiful weather. For time spent reading the Outsiders (which Q just finished for school) on the loveseat by the campfire in the yard, then as it got dark just leaning on Rich staring into the flames. I am grateful for the spontaneous dates of early summer: breakfasts, coffees, and cocktails with popcorn outside in our Adirondack chairs by wedding trees. I am grateful for my solid husband who lets me soak his shirt front in tears as needed, so I can get it out and go on. I am grateful for a lovely long weekend extra day – we had cabana coffee to start the day and Caribbean sunset cocktails to end it – a completely fictitious getaway. That evening we had our drink (I had made fruity syrup that day as part of my freezer clean-out effort and mixed it with our whiskey) and sat in the gathering dark watching bats. He got me laughing until we fell asleep. Laughter is antiviral, and has many more benefits besides.

I am grateful for Rich, that every time adversity comes along it makes Us stronger. You name it: moving, road trips, challenging coparents, unemployment, pandemics, everything that can be hard for couples.

I am grateful that every now and then Quinn wants to read to me, instead of the usual where he wants me to do the reading. Then I can just watch him and listen to his voice and soak him in.

During another cocktail hour in the Adirondack chairs by the wedding trees the western tanagers visited, flaunting their bright plumage. A new clutch of robin eggs is incubating under the mama in the nest. And I saw a baby rufous hummingbird in the bayou! I am pretty sure it had just fledged.

Pizza night, a ride on the bay road, gelato and a harry potter movie marathon. I am grateful for the simplicity of the days, the ease of the evenings.

I am grateful to be gardening a bit while the weather holds.

Speaking of if the weather holds… the Indigo Girls and Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach did a live feed together and it was magical. Holy. I have been watching the Indigo Girls do their music live feeds as well, and when they remarked that “this was the most requested song,” I was surprised that it hadn’t been Galileo or Closer to Fine or Power of Two… and then I realized it is also a favorite of this former wooden ship sailor: the Wood Song.

The thin horizon of a plan is almost clear

My friends and I have had a tough time

Bruising our brains hard up against change

All the old dogs and the magician

Now I see we’re in the boat in two by twos

Only the heart that we have for a tool we could use

And the very close quarters are hard to get used to

Love weighs the hull down with its weight

But the wood is tired and the wood is old

And we’ll make it fine if the weather holds

But if the weather holds we’ll have missed the point

That’s where I need to go

No way construction of this tricky plan

Was built by other than a greater hand

With a love that passes all out understanding

Watching closely over the journey

Yeah but what it takes to cross the great divide

Seems more than all the courage I can muster up inside

Although we get to have some answers when we reach the other side

The prize is always worth the rocky ride

But the wood is tired and the wood is old

And we’ll make it fine if the weather holds

But if the weather holds we’ll have missed the point

That’s where I need to go

Sometimes I ask to sneak a closer look

Skip to the final chapter of the book

And then maybe steer us clear from some of the pain it took

To get us where we are this far yeah

But the question drowns in it’s futility

And even I have got to laugh at me

No one gets to miss the storm of what will be

Just holding on for the ride

The wood is tired and the wood is old

We’ll make it fine if the weather holds

But if the weather holds we’ll have missed the point

That’s where I need to go


~Week of 5-30 to 6-5~

I am grateful for:

More beautiful days! A butterfly sighting. My Dad’s birthday. A completely cleaned-out freezer. Rich and I on our knees, weeding together. Twelve quarts of chicken broth tucked in the freezer when I turned it back on.

My work contract is a source of stress. Even when I know there is funding for next year, I will expend an incredible amount of mental energy between now and September when the new one is set to begin, concerning whether I stay with the same or have to switch to a new contracting agency (fill out new hire paperwork, change health insurance plans, add another retirement fund to my already out-of-hand “portfolio”, none of which contains that much money), whether the new contract will go into play on time (or will I have a gap in employment, and health coverage), updating my resume (I save it for days I’m feeling like a badass scientist, and put it away on the days I feel resentful that NOAA doesn’t recognize this by offering me a permanent position). I am not grateful for this stress, but I am very grateful to have a job in these stressful times when so many are out of work.

On the anti-racism front, I am in that uncomfortable space between reading all I can and listening to Black voices more because I need to confront myself, but also needing to speak up, but also trying to keep silent so Black voices can be amplified, but also acting in solidarity. I really can overthink like it’s my job! But seriously, the one uncomfortable thing in my life should be this.

If the weather holds, we’ll have missed the point…

I am grateful the world is awake.

I decided not to do any posting this week at all, in #muted solidarity. Which means next week silence is out, because speaking up is necessary. Studying. Gathering resources.

Worked on my resume all day in between sending emails demanding justice for Breonna Taylor, shot in her own home on a no-knock warrant by police on March 13th. On June 5th, she would have been 27 years old.

I told Quinn I was thinking about going to the Black Lives Matter protest and explained my desire to support the movement. And while it is not entirely safe for us to go out in the world right now, we can do it relatively safely with a mask and while staying 10 feet apart, but Black people live in a world where they can’t go out safely every day. I explained to him that during the pandemic, the inequality that is already present in society only became more extreme, so they are even more unsafe now than they are “normally”‘ and how that version of “normal” isn’t right and never has been. I thought it would take some discussion, but he didn’t hesitate. He wanted to go.

I was selfishly excited to see him and thrilled that he was open to this change in perspective from “the only safe thing is to stay at home” to “some people are never safe and I can do this to show I care.”

So for my own part with educating myself… my normal way of handling uncomfortable feelings is to deal with them as fast as I can so I can put them behind me… I’m in the middle of a few things right now that don’t sit well but with this particular one, it is good and right to sit in the middle of being uncomfortable about it. It’s uncomfortable to think about a whole group of people living in fear and grief every day of their lives, but it’s imperative that I sit with that; it is what we’re being asked to do and I feel that it is quite literally the least we can do.

There are many opportunities for feeling uneasy, for self doubt. Staying open is the key. If we sit with feeling uncomfortable about not knowing how to do it right, and keep that awkward conversation going, maybe we get somewhere.

I stood and marched with Quinn. We held our signs.

I made that mask for him, and gave it to him when he and I hiked on my birthday… the last time I saw him… on April 3rd…

The protest was on June 3rd.

Two months…

It was way too short…. but I was a pretty proud mama to stand with him.

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