small mother

I was already a mother when I became a mother. Long before I had my son. I just didn’t know it.

I became a mother at three. My mother had tuberculosis when I was born. Luckily she coughed blood a month before, otherwise I would not be here. I was born in a tuberculosis sanatorium, the first baby there in 25 years. My mother said that the staff was hugely excited about a baby. She was drugged to the gills while reading about the French Revolution and hallucinated Marie-Antonette’s head on a pole and the guillotine. She joked that she could never read about the French Revolution again. I was born, she kissed me, and I was swept away so that I would not get tuberculosis.

I was with my father and father’s family and then with my maternal grandparents. I came home to my parents at nine months. Adults kept handing me to other adults. I concluded that they were loving but stupid and couldn’t be trusted for a moment.

My sister was born five days before I turned three. My mother said that I met guests at the door and said, “Come see my baby.” Mine, because these adults don’t understand the needs of a baby, and I want her to feel loved and safe. No one will give my baby away!

Later my mother would tell a story about my sister worrying about Kindergarten. My mother could not reassure her. Neither could my father. I spoke up: “All you learn is colors, numbers and ABC and you already know those. I taught you.” My mother claimed that my sister was instantly reassured. I don’t remember: these are my mother’s stories and she is gone. But I have collected mother daughter pictures and small statues, just a few, all my life. And I wanted to have children. I liked surgery and obstetrics, but I chose family medicine, because I want to have children and to see them and be a mother too.

Health and joy and safety and comfort to all mothers and fathers and children everywhere.

 

joy

This photograph is from 2011. The Synchronized Swimming competitions took an enormous amount of time and work for the girls and work for the parents. And the coaches and the people who held the meets and judges. I am looking through photos and the girls had such fun together, older and younger, beautiful teamwork and joy.

arrival

This is for Thursday doors. A door on a barge….

I went to the Pourhouse last night. A four apartment building was arriving by barge from Vancouver. It was unloaded into the parking lot with two cranes and various trucks. Today they will be dropping power lines as they convey it through town.

d2

The beer garden was very popular…. unique entertainment.

d3

d4

d5

Everyone cheered when it was across and on land!

D6.jpg

Ready for the trip through town, dropping power lines, today.

diligence

I am a day behind on the A to Z Challenge but that’s ok! I started a day late anyhow….D for diligence. One of the 7 virtues. This is from the 7 Heavenly Virtues, a different list from the cardinal and theological virtues. Bravery is not on the Heavenly list. Diligence is the match for the sin “sloth“. This virtue does not double as an emotion, just as chastity does not double as an emotion. I can feel diligent but it’s not like saying, “I am a sloth today! I feel totally lazy!”

The photograph is from 2011, my daughter and another member of the synchronized swimming team. My daughter started at age 7 and could barely swim one length of the pool, much less two. She fell in love with it and continued until the team disbanded, and then moved on to swim team. It is a spectacularly difficult sport, to dance upside down in the water. They score on the Olympic scale right from the start, earning scores of 1 or 2 out of 10.

Here they are leading a land drill, with younger team members in the water. This is at a meet, so they are ready with their suits and hair pieces for the team performance.

There are so many things that can be approached with diligence that lead to the joy of doing something well and with one’s entire heart…..

 Musicians work with great diligence too….here.

Cold homes

For the Daily Prompt: float.

Float… but some of my patients are not floating. They are sinking.

It has been clear and below freezing for a few days now. I have more than one patient who is not exercising or not taking care of their blood sugar or not eating adequately…. because they don’t have heat. They are staying in bed with an electric blanket or staying in one room because they have an electric heater plugged in. My house has 1930s wiring and I am told that it is a fire hazard to plug one of those heaters in.

I went home yesterday and my house felt cold. I checked the monitor: 49 degrees. I had cleaned the heat pump filters two days before and then had forgotten to restart the heat pump. It was up to 57 degrees by this morning and will be warm tonight.

Prayers and donations for the people in all our areas who do not have adequate heat….