Tunnel Vision

The car door slammed shut. Echoing across the empty park. He looked around wondering where everyone was. Shrugging at his thought, he walked toward the woods with the familiar path that he walked everyday at one o’clock in the afternoon. Staring straight ahead he did not see the small dog that was slowly walking toward him from the playground area.

He made it to the woods at the same time that the small dog made it to him. He walked, deep in thought. Not noticing that the dog was right beside him.

The dog glanced up at him, and cocked his head to the side. Thinking, “He must be really enamored with this girl if that is all he is thinking about, as he does not see me. Everybody sees me! Even when I want to go unnoticed. Like the day that Mr. Jones sat on the bench and I snuck up behind to sneak a piece of his sandwich. Gosh, he saw me, and was not too happy with me either.”

The man grunted then. Wondering why he suddenly was thinking of Mr. Jones and a sandwich. It must be all those late nights working on the story. 

He continued walking. Trying hard to figure out the next move his character in the story was going to make. He was at the part now where she was stuck in a precarious situation with a witness to the murder that she was investigating. He was uncertain how to get her out of the situation.

The dog, still following beside the man, wondered if he would ever be noticed. He let out a soft sigh. This was hard work. The girl the man was thinking about non-stop must be really special to have his attention so focused.

At that moment, the dog spotted a squirrel and could not help himself. He yelled out, “Squirrel! Beautiful, probably tasty, squirrel!”

The man startled at the barking of the dog. Snapping his attention to the present moment. He saw the dog looking ahead and slightly above. Spotting the squirrel in the tree, sprinting from branch to branch.

” He looks like he is busy today. ” The man commented to the dog.

The dog looked up at the man with utter excitement.

The man stopped walking and bent down to pat the top of the dogs head. Finally, the dog thought. You finally see me. Of course it took a squirrel to get your attention. Those squirrels always get attention. The dog smirked. Enjoying the company of the man now that he was noticed.

In petting the dog, the man noticed that there was no collar. He asked the dog if he had a home. To which the dog whimpered slightly. The man took it as a no, and on impulse asked if the dog would like to go home with the man.

One excited bark erupted from the dog.

The two turned and headed back to the car. Uncertain what lie ahead, but hopeful that friendship and companionship was part of their future together.

The Day the World Hit Me

Smack! Right in the middle of the forehead. The world hit me.

Proceeding to fall to my lap. I opened my eyes to find the squishy globe. They call them stress balls because we are so stressed these days we need a ball to relax. I still cannot see how a squishy ball can relieve stress, but then again maybe since the kids delight in tossing it around the yard, it very well is doing it’s job of relieving stress. Yet it is called a stress ball? Not a stress relieving ball.

“Mom!” They chorus. “Throw it back!”

I look up from the ball. Raise my hand and toss them the world. Hoping with everything that they catch it. Hoping with everything the world does not hit them square in the face. Knowing that this is not the first time the kids hit me with the world and opened my eyes. Kids have a way of doing that. Catching ones attention in the most direct and random way.

The youngest caught the ball, and the game of catch continued. Brothers tossing the world around. Laughing in delight whether one caught it or not.

Learning to Let Go

She stood in front of me. Hands clenched in tight fists at her side. Tears streaming down her face. Murmuring her pain. Frustration, pain, sadness, flowed out of her.

I knelt down to her level. Placing my hands on her fists. “It will be okay.” I quietly spoke to her. Explaining the best I could how if we let the tiny bird go it would be best for him.

” But…h.h.heee..just ssssttttarteddd to fly. “

“I know love. His flying is why we need to let him go. He will not thrive cooped up in a cage for the rest of his life. He needs to be free. “

She wiped at her face a little. Taking in giant, ragged breaths. She blinked a few times. Looking at the cage were the goldfinch sat patiently waiting for his release. Her blond hair blowing and sticking to her wet face was pushed away as her body came back to calm.

“You’re right. He needs to move on. We need to let him go. I am going to miss him.”

” as will I. “

She moved slowly toward the cage. Opened the door. Quietly, saying goodbye as she stepped away from the cage.

He eagerly leapt forward and took flight. Pausing briefly on a branch to look back at the girl. A quiet chirp, and off he flew. Free again to fly.

When A Star Falls

Spider asked the sky
What the stars see from up high.
"They see your dreams,
Your thoughts,
Your hopes.
They see it all.
Especially, what you love the most."

Spider asked, why stars fall.
Sky replied,
"Because they have seen it all.
Stars hold into all our dreams,
Our hopes,
Our fantasies.
Some stars get heavy with all the stuff
That some of us dream up.
The burdens, the grief
the pain, and misbelief.
These stars cannot hold onto it,
And simply, must release."

Spider sat quiet
On his shimmering web.
Saddened that our pain could
Fall a star. He said,

" Thank you, Sky. One more question.
What happens after they fall? "

"Well," said sky, " that is the magic of it all.
For once a star falls,
It is free again.
It has released all that burdens it,
It will shine again.
Differently this time,
Maybe not as bright.
In a new location,
As a new light.
It will shine this time,
Collecting all the dreams.
Holding tightly to the hopes.
Letting go of all it does not need. "

Spider smiled.
Looking up.
"Thank you, sky."
He said.
"That reply sounds exactly
Like building a new web."

Deepening Gratitude

She sat. Legs crossed. Eyes shut. Focused on her breathing. In. Out. In. Out. Until everything fades away, and stillness is found. Images flicker behind her eyes. To rapid to consciously process, but they are processed and remembered. In. Out. Breathing. Flashing images. Repeated. Washed with love. Deep in gratitude. Slowly returning to the present. Where the stillness will carry her through the day. Where the breath will be focused on. Where her gratitude will be deepened. Where life will flow and unfold in calmness, wonder, and delight. In stillness, deepening gratitude, she lives and breathes each day. Sending love to all along the way.

Revived

She sat. Looking out across the lawn. In all actuality, she was not looking at anything. Blindly staring out across the lawn was more accurate. Meditating? Perhaps. Numb, might be more descriptive.

She could not believe what happened. Seconds before she left to go home. The whole world tipped upside down. Okay, maybe that was a stretch to say. Perhaps, a bit dramatic. Yet her world did change. In an instant. Bam. Changed.

She knew it was coming. All the signs were there, but she had no clue it would be today. Today. Today!

She pushed her hands through her hair in an effort to wrap her mind around the whole thing. She tried to focus her gaze on something real, it, the numbness, kept creeping in. Why would she be numb? It was perplexing.

This was the very thing she had been working towards.

Her dream had been realized!

Why was she numb? Yes, at first she was ecstatic! She even hugged Marty, who, perplexed and squirming, stammered out a “Congratulations.” Blushing profusely.

She might have to apologize to Marty for invading his space when she saw him tomorrow at the humane society. After all, he was only there by happenstance, when the call came through that she got the house.

THE house…

The one that whispered to her in her dreams. Yes, it was a material object, and in the grand scheme of things, it should not matter. Yet matter, it did. She loved the house! Something about it soothed her.

She breathed deeply. Expelling the numbness, and realizing that she did deserve this wondrous new beginning.

With a huge sigh of relief, accepting her fate would be entwined with this house, she stood up, walking into her home, intent to finish packing.

She was moving on!

Ruby’s Story – The Storm

She stood at the oak tree overlooking town. A storm was rolling in. Flashes of lighting could be seen in the distance. She watched the storm for  a few minutes. Marveling at the sun hitting her back, and the slowly approaching storm. It always fascinated her when the weather was split so noticeably.

She knew, by how slow the storm was approaching, she had a few more minutes to watch before she headed into town for shelter. She had work in ten minutes, and would have to get moving regardless of the storm.

She was thankful she had a few more minutes to observe the split wonder of nature. The sun still lingered behind her. The storm slowly, but determinedly, moving toward her. She hoped it was the type of storm that moved out the same way because there was something metaphoric about a storm moving out slowly with the sun lighting the sky behind it. Slowly, burning the storm away.

Slightly smiling, she walked to work. Knowing it would be a slow day. Most people would stay in because of the storm.