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a passionate repentance

Picking up and letting go

Picking up and letting go

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may God stand
I don't know what the hell we're doing in Iraq. But I think that whatever hold we had on the country is disintegrating. We're fighting both the Shi'ites and the Sunnis, we're *not* just fighting against the supporters and ex-supporters of Saddam Hussein we're fighting a thousand years of sectarian violence, with it's roots deep in the faith *and* the culture of the country. We didn't know what we were doing going in there. We paid no attention to the culture and the people *before* we went in. And I think we were lied to as to why we went there in the first place.

On the other hand, the mimosa is blooming. It's almost invisible to me, way up high the long slick bole of the tree but it's fragrant and it makes the evening air smell like candy it's so sweet. The paperwhites are blooming in their pots. There's some sort of wild vine that grows over my neighbor's fence, with wide, five petalled yellow flowers and orange fruit that bursts open to reveal red, fleshy seeds. I don't know if it's poison or not, but I never see the birds eating the fruit or the seeds, so I presume so. The tendrils of the vines curl like a little girl's hair, as they spread over the fence.

My friend in Ohio says that the narcissus is blooming, and the daffodils. I remember that being the first thing I saw, in my first wander around the neighborhood in Ely, were these narcissus, with their white petals and golden bells. I thought they weren't real, they were plastic. What did I know? I'd lived all my life in Arizona and California, I'd never seen a narcissus, or a daffodil. The cathedral bells kept ringing, and I thought--what's wrong, why do they keep ringing the bells? I was used to the Methodist church, where the bells rang only once or twice just before the service. The cathedral bells seemed to ring in the evening and the morning, at ever hour. It was strange, and cold, and I was confused, because everything here seemed so intensely *green*..the colors and the light were all wrong. Tinted like a Beatrix Potter illustration.

Picking up pieces. That's the easiest way to look at it, to me. I belong to this Yahoo group, called the Doe Network. Not the Christian Women's group, but like John and Jane Does. We look at the facts surrounding missing people's disappearances, and then unidentified bodies and facial reconstructions and sketches, and try to make matches. It sounds strange, and I guess it is, something strange to do, but it's like putting things together. I can't go hunt for people like Cecilia Zhang, but I can do this much. The group made it's eighteenth match not long ago. That's not bad, really. Considering that these are cold cases.

I'm embarrassed sometimes, at all the things I take for granted. I don't ever want anyone I care about to have to deal with the kind of heartache of never finding out if someone is alive or dead. I don't want anyone I love to deal with discovering someone's murdered. I used to know a woman named Joan, and I really liked her, she was so strong and so gracious, she could laugh at anything, and nothing ever seemed to make her sour tempered. Angry, maybe but not nasty.

And then her son, who apparently had a drug problem, was found in Narcoosee, in his car, with a hose from the tailpipe into the car, and a bottle of toluene in the car. And Joan just came apart. She changed. She *knew* that her son didn't kill himself. But because he died in a fairly lonely place, where there aren't a lot of policemen to cover a lot of area, and there's a lot of drug traffic, I don't know that the police followed the case as hard as they would have in Orlando.

I think if I were a better or more focused person, I'd be able to do more. I think all I have sometimes, is this confused *desire* to do more. And that's where it goes. I want to do what's right but that doesn't mean I actually do it.
  • kaleidoscopes...

    ..another interesting post. :-)
    Life is like that. Focussing on one thing can become an obsession, so it's probably better to be a bit 'unfocussed' or fuzzy anyways. :-/
    I used to feel bad about my contribution to the world when reading about the wonderful struff some very ordinary people do. Now, I'm content that I'm just one of the 99.9% of ordinary people who just cope with what they can.
    Just 'being there' for someone else can be a major contribution. The ones out there doing wonderful things are often too busy!
    • Re: kaleidoscopes...

      Alternatively, one can do everything for oneself, and not bother with others, like me. Do not discriminate egotists!
      • Re: kaleidoscopes...

        Hey! ;-) You're preaching to the converted. My dream when I was growing up, was to be a hermit.I was the only girl I knew who wasn't planning a wedding or something soppy.
    • Re: kaleidoscopes...

      I don't know how religious you are (I don't wish to offend), nor do I remember what the verse is exactly, but there's a place in the Bible that mentions something like that. That God has angels who are simply there, basically 'on call', whose purpose is to be at the ready or to just *be*, and they contribute by praising His Name and by praying that His Will be done.

      That seems comforting to me, both the idea that there are angels at the ready or just there to pray, and that we can really contribute by just being there, with our good thoughts and our hope and our willingness.
      • Re: kaleidoscopes...

        You can't offend me. :-) I'm accosted by experts (5yr olds) on a regular basis.
        When you are continually asked extremely personal questions like,"Why have you got hairs up your nose?" by these innocent little faces, you sorta lose any bridling responses.
        Religion? Too complicated to answer simply.
        Yes, I'm 'religious'; but my God doesn't often seem to be the same as anyone else's. It's a personal thing. My God has a fantastic sense of humour, looks out for me all the way, is extremely tolerant of everyone including those that think he's a total crock, doesn't live in church, and does give the strength to be there for others (even if you really want to be a hermit).
        It's comforting to know there's a guardian angel.Even if it's only a hedgehog(Long story).
  • Doing what's right

    A desire to do right is a good thing, and God bless you for *wanting* to do the right thing. We do take so much for granted these days; when bad things happen, like Cecilia, we can't comprehend it.

    I think what you're doing with the Doe network is great. I'd be interested in that; I don't think it's strange. It's basically the same as civilian volunteers helping with searches for missing persons. It just goes a helpful and practical step farther. I might have to look into that.

    Jade: keep being you. You give me the courage to be me, or to try to find the me I used to be.
    • Re: Doing what's right

      You give me the courage to be me, or to try to find the me I used to be.
      You're temporarily lost? I've been there. I think most people especially females, have. I went back teaching and became a 'person' again. I only come to life in front of a bunch of children.
      The confident person that had been me was lost in motherhood, and being a wife - a role I found a continual putdown. Being totally exhausted all the time didn't help either.
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