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Thursday, October 28, 2010

SEEING MARY LEE

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This picture I got by accident. It has no intent of the human mind in it. Somehow I pushed the button without intending to and have no recollection of when, though I recognize where. It's the ceiling light that shines on the musicians Friday night at the Front Porch Gallery. I like accidental pictures. They're even more free of conscious composition than a small child's first snapshots. In this, there isn't even a subject. The mind wants to make the lights and the track the subject, which is ok by me. I still like the picture as itself. Different shades of white and one black line.



Met Mary Lee this morning, grief counselor with Hospice, who was a tremendous benefit in the time of Hospice helping keep Jr out of the nursing home. She didn't help with the changing of diapers, etc. Her role was more working with the caregiver going through emotional turmoil, sorrow, fear, helplessness. Whenever I felt the need for someone to talk with who understood what I was going through, a phone call to Mary would have her there first minute she could get there. Her's was one of 4 cars that when I saw one coming up the driveway, it was the same as seeing an angel flapping white wings like a crow flying low up the driveway.



Once, I felt like I needed to dive deep with a psychotherapist looking for something I couldn't find on my own. I asked Mary to come and spend an hour with me. We sat on the porch, Jr inside, and I explained my need to dive deep with someone to ask me leading questions. At this moment I don't remember the issue, but do remember by the end of the hour I saw into what what it was I was looking to find. It was a significant discovery at the time. We mostly talked about frustrations, joys, sorrows. Primarily, I needed somebody to talk out my meanings to and Mary provided the understanding ear and encouraging words. In addition to that, she's somebody I like knowing. We talk easily.



We had a great deal of laughs this morning. We took a corner in the coffee shop on Main St, Backwoods Bean, and did our private talking there. Two men in the place were out of their minds with curiosity about our conversation. It was animated and full of good humor, obvious we were having fun. There was a time each of them, one at a time, walked within earshot of us to hear what we were talking about, trying not to be obvious, like getting off the seat in the bar, walking over by us like looking at a picture on the wall, then back to the seat. It was funny, not a problem. We talked loud enough that if they wanted to hear us they could. We weren't hiding anything. They were, for me, part of the good humor. It was totally innocent. The time came they were eaten up with curiosity so much they had to hear something to make sense of our conversation. They made it real.



There have been times I've gone to her office to talk about something that was bothering me at the time. Mainly, I think it was a need to talk about Jr with someone who knew my meaning. Like today, it was for my part mainly a chance to talk about Jr. I tried the best I could to explain to Mary my meaning when I say I feel Jr's presence all the time now. It's not like a ghost, a spirit, or even anything psychic, just presence. All that I learned from knowing Jr, which is considerable, is now incorporated into who I am. In that way, he is with me all the time.
I told her about keeping the interior of the car clean, because Jr liked it kept clean. He never cleaned the outside, and I don't either. It will always be "Jr's car." I love it that he passed his old-man chariot on to me as I'm entering my own old man phase.



It felt good being back in touch with Hospice. My awe for these people is tremendous. A year must pass before a caregiver is allowed the opportunity to volunteer with Hospice. A year is passed first of November, I said I wanted to do something volunteer, thinking of being one who gives a caregiver a break for some hours, which amounts to reading a thick book. She had some other thoughts in mind that we talked about for awhile, something to do with understanding the grief process, the journal aspect of the blog before, during and after, keeping a record of the feelings one passes through. While going through the whole process, writing a blog entry every day became my friend. It was a kind of archiving the subtleties of a universal experience like making the videos at the Front Porch Gallery and putting them on YouTube for whoever happens to see them. Sharing valuable experience that uplifts the spirit. I look forward to a future associated with Hospice.

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