The other night I had a dream that hundreds of little black birds were swarming around me, pecking at me, pursuing me. I felt the relentlessness of their pursuit but I wasn’t completely terrified, rather I felt a sense of just giving in and giving up.
When I woke, the dream felt heavy and ominous. I am, after all, a woman who looks for signs in everything.
Hundreds of little blackbirds trying to attack me… How can that be good?
This dream came after several days of holidays with Dan’s family. We all reunited in Waterton over the Canada Day long weekend and then drove together to Montana, where Dan’s brother and his wife have a holiday house.
Life has been simpler and more relaxed this week…..big dinners, sleep-ins, family walks and games, swims,
all surrounded by the gorgeous bounties of summer,
seasonal fruits and berries, wildflowers in full bloom, and warm days and evenings.
Last night, however, my summer reverie was violently disturbed when George crashed his head into a signpost while playing tag with his cousins after dinner.
It was, ironically, the loveliest of evenings. We had just finished a wonderful meal celebrating Dan’s parents’ anniversary and were all meandering through the park.
Suddenly, though, I found myself cradling my sweet crying boy in my arms, panicking inwardly about how severely he had been hurt. He seemed to recover but at 2am Dan and I made the decision to go into emergency as George had started vomiting.
12 hours later we still had not slept and had made yet another trip to emergency to have it finally determined that George had in fact suffered a mild concussion but would be okay.
These are the very worst kinds of hours as a mother.
They are the long hours when I try to hard to appear brave and calm, but am terrified.
These are the long hours when I talk to my mom in my mind non-stop, asking for support and strength.
These are the long hours when I know for sure that nothing matters more to me in the world than the health and well-being of these precious beings, our children.
Hundreds of blackbirds swarming…..perils dive-bombing me from every direction and I am so so desperately and completely powerless and vulnerable.
On a family hike earlier this week a few of us were talking about how it’s not usually the dangers that we work to protect ourselves from that end up being the problem. At the outset of the hike we were alerted by a warning that bears had been hanging out in the area,
but our most dangerous moment was when we all sat down to rest for a few minutes beside a hill and inadvertently triggered a mini avalanche of rocks.
And on the day of George’s head injury we had taken the kids to the skateboard park in the morning and watched them repeatedly zoom down ramps of steep cement,
It was a sign on the sidewalk that evening that ended up changing our course.
Driving to the hospital this afternoon, however, I made my peace with it all…the kind of peace that I have to make over and over and over,
because my gentle covenant with this life is constantly forgotten,
I am not in control. I surrender. It is too hard to hold so tightly onto my fears and anxiety and panic. I just can’t do it.
I cannot stop this swarm, nor can I predict which one will end up scarring me and unfolding more pain or more of life’s dark bits.
However, beyond and higher is the vast blue sky, billowing clouds, the sun,
a safety and trust and a broader perspective that I have to believe is sustainable and true and real,
All is well. All will be well.
What a joy it was again to celebrate Canada Day in Waterton. The bike parade in the morning was an absolute delight,
a spectacle of kindness, laughter, joy, innocence and fun,
with the Rockies sparkling in the background.
Our Canada. My goodness we are blessed.Bear grass
Oh yes, and speaking of wildflowers…. the stunning beautiful bear grass is in bloom, a flower I get so excited about.
‘you belong among the wildflowers, you belong somewhere you feel free’ Tom Petty