Saturday, March 29, 2008

Fiber Fellowship at Lariviere House in Richford, VT

So here I am in a strange place with time on my hands. I had brought yarn and crochet hooks with me to make Linda's grandchildren each a hat. Hats are pretty quick to make and so I started some baby hats for my friend, Rob's baby hat contest hosted from his site All the hats are then donated to the Beverly hospital (MA). Having packed in a frenzy, I had stuffed all the yarn I could fit into one bag, but I wasn't thinking color at the time. I asked Linda where there was a yarn shop and she points me down the street to Lariviere House. Shirley Jewett opened her shop in 1994. She had just what I needed to round out my color options. But knitting and crochet were just two of the ten options Shirley offered. Lessons and materials to do Tole painting, basket making, beading, jewelry making, sewing, quilting, smocking and etching were also available. What ever interested Shirley she learned and was willing to pass on her knowledge. It was a great relief to sit in her shop surrounded by all the ingredients to go in ten different directions and just talk. Here was a woman who I had just dropped in on in the middle of her work day who gave me me what I needed most: a quiet place to focus on the joy of creating.
Blog On!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Richford, Vermont

Remember when you were a kid and you marveled at being able to stand on a boundary line and be in two states at once? Here is the view from Linda Pigeon's house looking out from the USA and seeing Canada.
The first morning I met Jill and Porky, owners of the River Street House of Pizza. Besides their pizza, it was the only place in town for breakfast. Think of it as "Cheers" with eggs, toast and coffee and no beer. (Well, none that I saw.) The center table was always filled with an ever changing cast of hungry characters. By day two it was my seating of choice. Thanks to Linda, who made sure I met everbody, I understood how easy it must have been for my brother to fit in.
Throughout my five days there I kept thinking how sorry I was for not making the trip to visit him sooner. How much fun it would have been to sit at the Riverside's center table with him and see his comfort in this community. That sense of belonging was not evident in our family and I wonder if this may have been the first time he experienced it so fully.
Blogging On..........

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Off to Richford, VT

Instead of getting to visit Jon, my other brother, Rick and I head today to Richford, VT to meet the people and see the town where he had been the happiest in his life. I look foreword especially to meeting Linda Pigeon who helped my brother with his photographic submissions and made it possible for his work to appear in Vermont Life. I know that was one his proudest achievements.
More upon my return.
Blog On!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Back in the Real World

OK, I am back home to my normal local but nothing is normal. I have lived the last few days on cold cuts, Cadbury Malted Milk Easter Eggs and coffee feeling like a hypocrite after my eulogy referred to Jon's poor eating habits. Plans have been made, weather permitting for a gathering in Richford to meet his friends and see the place where he had been the happiest.
Still blogging hanging on for the ride,

Monday, March 10, 2008

Healing Through Humor

It is the saddest of days. What is left of my biological core family and those who are "core by reality" are gathered in a small room to say goodbye to Jon. As tough as this is I know it will not be real to me until I had actually see him. I quietly wait at the far end out of a need to brace myself. Finally I move to the side of the casket and look down. My hope that a mistake had been made and that it was another person found in his apartment is gone. He is wearing a suit and tie. He hated wearing clothes like that. I would have dressed him in his favorite old jeans and a sweatshirt or Tee shirt. On his feet would have been the very sneakers that tramped for miles on his endless photo quests. Merri had picked these clothes and since he would now spend eternity next to his mother I think she did him a favor to make sure he was wearing clothing that would have her vote of approval. I notice the tie. I lean down to look again. My brother is wearing a tie with the subtle pattern of horse's asses, tails swept to the side and no one had noticed but me. In that darkest of moments the room is suddenly filled with laughter. I know in my heart that Jon had really picked the tie.
Slogging, Blogging On,

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Another Step in the Process

Today I received a call from the Vermont State office that did the autopsy. Dr Bundock told me that although he had never had a previous heart attack, he did have severe heart disease, severe coronary artery disease, emphysema and high blood pressure. Perhaps he had symptoms. He did mention to someone that he was thinking about going to the doctor. Anyone who knew Jon could never imagine him living with the limitations that all this was capable of dispensing. It is an odd comfort, but a comfort none the less.
Bravely Blogging On!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

My Brother's Keeper ?

If someone is a danger to another the decision for intervention is clear cut. But if the person makes life choices that undermine their own life how do we justify judgement? My brother smoked, ate unhealthy food and was lax in his health care. If I had treated him like Rapunzel he might be here today but he probably would not be speaking to me and rightly so. I have been on the receiving and giving end of judgements and no good comes from either position. The toughest part is to accept that I have and deserve no power in this situation.
Working through the process.......
and still Blogging On!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Jon Wind 1951 - 2008

How can this be? In my mind I thought we would have years to work through our "stuff". We'd get to be buddies. Surely we would get to that point where we could laugh about the weird growing up we had with an undercurrent of knowing. My worst fear was that his smoking would cause lung cancer. I accepted there was nothing I could do or say (having tried both) to change his viewpoint or actions.
This morning I received a call saying he had been found by friends. He had not shown up for breakfast at a restaurant. Our dad had years of that long, slow slide into home plate and our brother had but minutes of that process.
This is nothing like the the death of my Dad on November, 13th. Unexpected and too soon, it feels like riding a bucking bronco.
Trying to Blog On,