Thursday, June 2, 2011

Caring for Newborn

My husband just left for work.  We have a morning routine where we exchange thoughts, prayers, blessings for a few moments before he heads out the door.  This morning he played a couple of hymns I like on the piano and I sang along.  Feeling cheerful and uplifted, I told him I am beginning to find my niche within this Mormon structure.   Afterwards, when we shared our together time he said in passing he liked what was happening for me and it was our 'baby'.  Oh so much more profound than he could have known when he said it, I stopped in my tracks to consider it and told him that is exactly what I have been doing since February, like tending to a newborn, I have been giving full borne attention daily to nurturing this newborn, leaving off attending to other elements in my life that for the moment have taken on a lower priority.

A symbolic concept, to be sure, and I like it.  It is our baby, our newborn, and deserving of the attention being given to care for, nurture, and give time for this child to become the center of our lives.  A labor of love,  in the woman's way of creating life, giving birth, attending to the new child.  I love the symbology and it does indeed reflect the loving time we have shared and given to creating this new life.  I hold it dear, we hold it dear.  Amazing what a few words will inspire in imagery.

Last weekend was Memorial Day weekend.  We had a lot of activity in different yet similar arenas over those four days.  We had made plans to meet his son's new baby and it was rescheduled several times - their scheduling conflict, ours, and a holiday in between the original weekend date and when we finally were able to come to a mutually agreeable weekend date.  In between, we have had our baptism, and family coming from out of town and out of state to participate in our baptism.  His daughter was among one who came from out of town to be at our baptism.  She knew of our plans to visit new grandchild, and had offered to have us stay overnight with her and her fiance.  We were appreciative of the offer, and had a thoroughly pleasant visit with both of them.  Next day we went to his son's home to meet new grandchild.  His children were there and it was pleasant enough. There has been a long term estrangement from or with his children so when I say pleasant enough, it means it was awkwardly pleasant for all.  Except for the grandchildren, they are, as most all children are, spontaneous and engaging for their own reasons.   We then visited the cemetery where two of my granddaughters are buried.  Somehow appropriate for Memorial Day weekend.  Drove home again, off to the church for the chili feed.

At the chili feed we met new friends who are from the visiting Ward, had some fun exchanged with them when we explained why we were not going to be at Sunday services in that we planned a drive up the Washington coast to the new town Seabrook or south down the Oregon coast.  Explaining the concept of Seabrook as a new coastal community designed  to be a walk about community and our new friends trying to imagine it brought up the word commune, which became a running joke for all of us over the next two days.  We also met  a young man from the visiting Ward who is stationed at Fort Lewis and will be deploying to Afghanistan in next two weeks.  He shared conversation with my granddaughter and I asked if I could send him letters, post cards, care packages while he is deployed.  He agreed, although, I'm sure he is surrounded by family who will be sending him all those things and more.  Since my granddaughter has her stepfather deployed in Afghanistan just now, it was meaningful to me that this chance encounter with another young soldier headed for the same destination should fall into our laps.

The lovely elderly couple who live in this little village where we live have befriended us and taken us with some affection as a part of their family.  They were charming to my granddaughter as were our newly met friends at the chili feed Saturday night at the church, and again at the camp out Sunday night at the KOA.  At the Saturday chili feed, he quietly gave my granddaughter a Book of Mormon and another book 'As A Mustard Seed' which is a history of the people of our local Ward back to it's formation days. She quietly and graciously accepted his offering.  I'm proud of how gracious she has been with the members of our's and the visiting Ward.  This is not likely quite what she would have put on her list of things I'm going to do on Memorial Day, and yet, I think she thoroughly enjoyed the contact and community on both days.  And we shared a 'Girls' day on Sunday, she and I, with a drive partially down Oregon coast, she did the driving, her car and I think she enjoyed the curves and twists with the enthusiasm of a young driver.

 Our affection for this lovely elderly couple is growing, and since they are in their spry 80's, we know our time with them is short, and we know it will be meaningful.  He is WW 11 veteran, and I made a mental note that he was wearing his cap to the camp out on Memorial Day weekend. We must invite them to dinner at our house soon, they have twice now had us to Sunday dinner at their home.

My husband will be going with his home teaching companion (the same man of the elderly couple I mentioned) early this month and surprisingly (or not) enough their lesson will be on tithing.  Which is the lesson I had to instruct on 3rd Sunday last month.  A person could start to think there is a message we are to be receiving and assimilating.  Since he and I spent a lot of time processing the preparation I put into giving the lesson, he will be using some of that material and reassembling it in his own manner for his home teaching assignment this month.  He and his teaching companion agreed to trade off every month in who would give the lesson, and this month it will be my husband's turn to present the lesson.

I'm still waiting for my visiting teacher assignments, there has been some sort of  interruption for Relief Society President who is taking some time off just now and her newly called Counselors are picking up the slack.  I'm in no hurry, all in good time.  Meanwhile, the studies, podcasts, reading, blogs, books keep my time fully engaged.

'Be Still My Soul'

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