Saturday, April 1, 2017

For Thor - 82 - Dirt



What do I want to say to you today? On this bright, beautiful first day of April with the birds singing and the tulips bobbing their heads in a gentle breeze I feel you here, but I have no particular words. And yet, I'm drawn to write, to spend a little quality time with you.  So I guess we'll just see where this takes us today.

The past few weeks have been hectic for me. I don't like it because I can't hear you as well when the pace of life is fast and loud. But I'm putting that rainbow connection we made to good use so that even in the whirlwind of a crazy day I am able to sense you better and see the signs you leave for me. Like the enormous rainbow that was practically in my lap the other day! Wow! These signs that tell me you're with me, even if your body is dead, that you are near even if I can no longer hold you in my arms and inhale your smell; a blend of fresh air, body wash, diesel fuel and awesomeness. A mom's longing to hold her son never diminishes, you know. So that is just part of my daily life now; learning to live with the longing, the heartache, the heartbreak and the sorrow. I have become an expert repurposer, turning these pains one by one into new pathways toward joyful living, love, and gratitude.  There are times though when I just have to sob, and that's okay. I miss you, and I'm really sad that you're not here to do all the things you wanted to do, to share in the beauty of life together.

Last week Xanny and I went to see Florida Georgia Line in concert. I know you already know this because you were there with us the whole time. And what a show it was, eh? When I learned FGL was coming to town, I knew we had to go for you and for us. Your Spotify playlists are chock full of FGL songs and so many of them seem like melodic biographies; telling the story of your life. You loved living in the country, the lovely gals, the jacked up trucks, hanging with your friends, and fun on a Friday night. Living, loving, laughing every minute of every day like there was no tomorrow was your credo. And I'm glad it was because you truly experienced so many things in your short years here on earth. It's a lesson to any of us who choose to live timidly or disconnected from our own power and voice. Tomorrow isn't promised, but right now, this very moment IS…what are you going to do with it? How ARE you in it?  Life is all about the experiences, right? FGL makes me think of this as I sing along with "This is How We Roll."  How did life express itself through me today? What experiences did I bring forth? How did I connect with and build closer relationships with others through these experiences? Yeah, I think about stuff like this while sipping that whiskey on a Friday night, Bubby.

I want to tell you THANK YOU for sending that tractor for your dad! If ever there was ever a doubt that you are helping us as much as possible, this tractor showing up as it did would put that doubt to bed! Everything about this tractor says it's from you. First of all, we looked around, and everything we found that met our needs was way outside our budget. So we kept looking. Dad thought he'd get some really old tractor and work on it. To which I said, hell no! I want a machine that's going to work a while before we have to put any money in it. And so we looked some more. Then dad found a 1996 John Deer 955 with very few hours on it that he could get with a rake and bush hog - for well within our budget. 1996 - the year you were born. John Deere - your and dad's favorite tractors. I knew in my heart that you had helped get that machine here for daddy.

I think we're going to name the tractor, "Li'l Lewie. I help dig!" in honor of you (your middle name) and the story from when you were two years old and scared the crap out of Pad and Dad.  They were digging a trench to put in a water line and were standing in the ditch with mud up to their knees using shovels and digging bars to break the earth when they heard an engine fire up from around the garage. They looked at each other and realized it was the backhoe that they heard. In the next instant, they realized that there were the only two people who would operate the backhoe, right? Unless, possibly... gasp! Well, those two grown men leaped about four feet in the air and ran to where the backhoe was parked to find your two-year-old self up in the seat jiggling the controls with a determined look in your eye and a smile a mile wide… "I help dig!" you said as Pap turned the key off and dad stilled your little hands on the controls that had the bucket bouncing up and down. "I help dig!" you insisted when they pulled you down and wiped the cold sweat from their foreheads. Needless to say, they never left the keys in the machines ever again! But that didn't stop you from wanting to ride on or drive any kind of tractor or truck, ever. And it certainly didn't keep you from digging. Dad and Pap gave you a little shovel to help them the old fashioned way…and you used that shovel anytime you could. One time you and Chaz even dug up the gas line two feet underground with plastic beach shovels!

We're putting in a meadow this year so that we can have forage for bees next year. It's going to be so beautiful to see a field of clover and orchard grass swaying in the breeze. I think I'll finally have some bluebirds come to live here with open space like that. You seem to like sending me birds. I'll keep my eyes open for whichever of avian beings you choose to send a message. I see them and send a kiss and a hug back to you, carried on their wings into the ether where you can catch them. 

I'm trying to get used to this new relationship and most days I do okay. I accept the gifts you send as evidence that I'm not dreaming this up. But sometimes it's just not okay. I know you see me struggling at times and that you try to help. Thank you, sweet boy, for sticking by my side and helping me up. The signs and the messages and the overwhelming feeling of your presence keep my head above water. And one by one, pain by pain, I turn them into new pathways…one step at a time, one tear at a time, one smile at a time into joyful living.

For today, I'm gonna get my hands in the dirt. Spring is in the air, and you are outside calling me to come out and play. I have some digging to do and a little raking, too.  A Florida Georgia Line song comes to mind… see you out there, Bubby.

I love you, Mom

DIRT - Florida Georgia Line

You get your hands in it
Plant your roots in it
Dusty head lights dance with your boots in it (dirt)
You write her name on it
Spin your tires on it
Build your corn field, whiskey
Bonfires on it (dirt)
You bet your life on it

It's that elm shade
Red roads clay you grew up on
That plowed up ground That your dad
Damned his luck on
That post game party field
You circled up on
And when it rains
You get stuck on
Drift a cloud back
Behind county roads
That you run up
The mud on her jeans that she peeled off
And hung up
Her blue eyed Summer time smile
Looks so good that it hurts
Makes you wanna build
A 10 percent down
White picket fence house on this dirt

You've mixed some sweat with it
Taken a shovel to it
You've stuck some crosses and some painted
Goal posts through it (dirt)

You know you came from it (dirt)
And some day you'll return to

It's that elm shade
Red roads clay you grew up on
That plowed up ground that your dad
Damned his luck on that post game party field
You circled up on
And when it rains you get stuck on
Drift a cloud back Behind county roads
That you run up
The mud on her jeans that she peeled off
And hung up
Her blue eyed summer time smile
Looks so good that it hurts
Makes you wanna build
A 10 percent down
White picket fence house on this dirt

You came from it,

And some day you'll return to it