Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Someday When I'm Gone - a moment of thanksgiving


October 2012 - Corporation Beach, Cape Cod

We took a long night walk on the beach, almost a hour to the end and back.  Most of it spent in small talk,  commenting on the stars and leaping over inlets that made it impossible to keep shoes dry during this low tide.  As we headed back on the final stretch, I overcame my fear of being rebuked and asked my son, the college freshman with the newly started beard, if he'd hold my hand.  Just for a minute, I added.  Without an answer, he reached out and clutched my hand, holding on longer than I'd even hoped for.  In that moment,  I had the realization that no matter how long I had to live, brief or long, everything was good and as it should be.   A moment of thanksgiving.  


“One of the strange things about living in the world is that it is only now and then one is quite sure one is going to live forever and ever and ever.
One knows it sometimes when one gets up at the tender solemn dawn-time and goes out and stands out and throws one's head far back and looks up and up and watches the pale sky slowly changing and flushing and marvelous unknown things happening until the East almost makes one cry out and one's heart stands still at the strange unchanging majesty of the rising of the sun--which has been happening every morning for thousands and thousands and thousands of years. One knows it then for a moment or so. And one knows it sometimes when one stands by oneself in a wood at sunset and the mysterious deep gold stillness slanting through and under the branches seems to be saying slowly again and again something one cannot quite hear, however much one tries. Then sometimes the immense quiet of the dark blue at night with the millions of stars waiting and watching makes one sure; and sometimes a sound of far-off music makes it true; and sometimes a look in someone's eyes.”   Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden


28 comments:

Francine Gardner said...

How did you guess I really needed to hear these words?profoundly, beautiful words.When fear takes over my soul, I reach out to the stars, go at night into the woods, sit, contemplate, breathe and take in the immensity and infinity of the universe. I have done one thing right with my sons.. they are not afraid to share their feelings and hold me when I feel low. Just looking at these two young men, I feel blessed and give my thanks.

Francine Gardner said...

How did you guess I really needed to hear these words?profoundly, beautiful words.When fear takes over my soul, I reach out to the stars, go at night into the woods, sit, contemplate, breathe and take in the immensity and infinity of the universe. I have done one thing right with my sons.. they are not afraid to share their feelings and hold me when I feel low. Just looking at these two young men, I feel blessed and give my thanks.

A Perfect Gray said...

I have no words. no words.

thank you for that beautiful moment.

all my best to you and yours, michelle. this holiday and always.

your friend, donna

ArchitectDesign™ said...

Thank you for sharing this :-)

SHERRY HART said...

That made me cry.....and long for a child I never had.....Happy Thanksgiving...Sherry

Karen said...

Well you just made me cry! And now I want to take a walk with my 25 year old son and hold his sweet hand. I'm gonna do it. Thank you so much.

Have a blessed Thanksgiving, but I know you are already doing that. xo

Loi Thai, Tone on Tone said...

Beautiful, Michele! I hope you and your family have a happy Thanksgiving holiday.
Very best,
Loi

MrsB said...

Crying now....beautiful.

Katherine said...

How tender. You made me cry and think of my incredible Son. I'm so grateful that we hug often and say 'i love you' freely.
Of course your Son - the man, would hold on to your hand. He too will remember the warmth of your touch - forever.

Happy Thanksgiving.

L.P. Mitchell said...

Emily should be walking through the door any moment now - and into her freshly painted (BM Excalibur) grey room. Every thing is goood & as it should be.

Happy Thanksgiving all around
LPM

Windlost said...

How beautiful. It is all about love in the end.

xo Terri

Squeak said...

Oh my goodness, you are so lucky!

I wish I could get my mother to hold my hand or (dare I ask) say I love you. I often say it to her. But, for 58 years, as far as I can remember, she's never said it back to me. I ask her to and she tells me not to be "so goddamned stupid".

Happy Thanksgiving!

Linda@ Lime in the Coconut said...

Oh. Touching the very strings of this mothers heart.

That was oh so beautiful. Thank you.

Linda@ Lime in the Coconut said...

Oh. Touching the very strings of this mothers heart.

That was oh so beautiful. Thank you.

Mary Ann Pickett said...

ahhh the lump in my throat. My boy is home with me now from college. The two of us had a five hour drive in the car yesterday...lots of silence, but I was patient and there were some moments when he told me about school. But even the silence was good. Just to have him near. Happy, happy Thanksgiving to you.

Kerry Steele- Design du Monde said...

Darn! That made me cry. I have a 17 year-old that slipped away one day long ago, grew up sort of and never hugs me like the little boy did.
It is so sweet that you had that loving moment. I'll bet you really cherish it.

columnist said...

Beautiful. Thank you.

pve design said...

I told my daughter yesterday that she needed to learn to prepare the Thanksgiving meal because someday I'd be gone and she looked at me and said, "Seriously Mom, that's your job now, you are not dead yet" so we both had a good laugh.
Of course your post made me cry cry cry.
What a sweet son you have. Lovely image and words.
pve

Kare said...

I try to be grateful for everyday and everyone. What a wonderful passage to read today!
Karen

Kare said...

I try to be grateful for everyday and everyone. What a wonderful passage to read today!
Karen

Henhurst Interiors said...

Lovely. Wishing you a very happy day today and more to come in the year ahead!
Phyllis

5th and State said...

a beautifully poignant story. i do catch those moments as i get older and it is indeed startling and reminds me to practice gratitude and all is good

you raised your son well

best to you michele
debra

Teresa at Splendid Sass said...

Michele-
This is such a beautifully written and heart felt post. Tears are running down this mothers face. These are such special moments.
Happy Thanksgiving.
Teresa
xoxo

Love Your Homes said...

This is so heartwarming to read! You're blessed with a caring and beautiful son.

We do not celebrate Thanksgiving here in Sweden, but my youngest son, 27, studies Graphic design in SF.
He called me first thing in the morning( 9 hours later here in Stockholm) to see how we're doing and to let us know he's longing for the Christmas holiday and spending time with the family back home.
There's only one month to go ❤ before he'll be home and give me daily hugs for a couple of weeks until he travels back to school again.

xo,
Ingela


Nancy said...

So beautiful Michelle, and I can so relate to these quiet but enormously significant gestures.
Happy Thanksgiving.
xo Nancy
Powellbrowerhome.com

Lisa said...

My son just asked me why I was crying. No words, other than thank you.
xo Lisa

Sarah K said...

Beautiful and very touching. Thanks for posting have a lovely day.

Matthews House and Garden said...

Hi Michele
First....thank you for always lifting me up! It's a real
compliment coming from you!
I got a email from the Scout Guide that you had mentioned
me on your blog again!
As I was having my morning coffee, the only quiet time of the day.
I saw your blog about your son. Okay I can't stop
crying! I remember from meeting him a few years again,
how sweet and gentle he was, and he reminded me of my son Matthew. Thank you!!....For reminding us of what's Important in life!

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