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Archive for January, 2012

Best Day Ever

Diego came barreling out of school before I even made it across the playground today shouting, “Best day ever! I’m in love!”

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Deliberate action is what makes us permanent in our own time and brings miracles to us when we focus our intent upon our wishes. Belief in anything is so powerful it can change your reality.

I woke up and realized my necklace was missing. I had no memory of taking it off although I had taken my earrings off downstairs, as evidenced by their glittery presence on the coffee table.

For the first time in months, I was ready to leave the house before 8, with the promise bribe of Mc Donald’s hot cakes freshly planted in Diego’s mind, we set out to retrace our steps on the playground at CBS before heading to the Montessori school.

With a heavy feeling in the pit of my chest we kicked rocks on the blacktop, fruitlessly wasting ten minutes but having to do it, leaving empty handed and even more certain the pebble was gone for good.

Arriving at work, I began looking all around the classrooms, office, storage closet and hallway. I stooped to look beneath the choo choo train and pulled the babies’s pack and plays away from the wall. I walked up to the office to tell Steph and Brian about my loss.

Brian listened and earnest as Easter he replied, ” you should pray to St. Anthony,” to which I smiled and said, ” I’ve done that before and it worked–I should!” and went laughing down the hall.

An hour later playing with the kids on the floor I remembered St. Anthony and sat still, hands pressed together in a prayerful way. I spoke in my mind with calm and watched as time stopped for one fraction of a moment as I found the words to reach out in a reflective and heartfelt moment of pure intent.

Not five minutes later I popped up from my squat on the floor with an epiphany; walked with certainty but still trembling in the attempt, and with a memory from the day before burning in my mind, I opened the pack and play I had folded in a heated moment before leaving for the day. As the mattress was unfolded from the crib itself, I glimpsed the unmistakable strands of the chain my crystal is threaded upon.

Miracle of focused intent and undying hope, optimism, obstinate stupidity? My reward for naïveté. Or the refusal to give up on magic.

Love,
Stacy

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Becoming Pinky

The thing happened a few summers ago, but the memory got tucked away for later. Visiting Smith Island, a small, insular, little known place that belongs to watermen and their history, fourth of July weekend, I did what the locals have always done. I went to the town picnic.

There were games, like the one where you had to put an Oreo cookie on your face and try to eat it without using your hands. They played peanut butter and bread ping pong. Along with the locals lives an interesting transient community that belongs to Smith Island and somehow coexists with their age-old crab culture. Save the Bayers, a group of idealistic environmental crusaders who inhabit a large home on the island, dorm style, trying to infiltrate their message of conservation through the community. They also serve as a link between the past and present; many islanders rarely (or never) leave the island, so these young, energetic youth with passion for marine life come to Smith Island and experience a culture that has barely changed in the past 50 to 100 years in many ways.

The ferry that brings you to the islands in the bay runs several times a day, and I took it on the way in and out. In the course of the three days spent there, I recognized almost every face on the way back. Two faces stood out; they were shining with some wonderful secret between them. One face belonged to a young waterman who looked as if he’d grown up on the water with a crab pot in his hand. The other I recognized from the picnic as a girl who I’d dubbed Pinky, on account of her pink dress, her bright energy, and her voluptuous frame.

She was a Save the Bayer and she was the main MC at the picnic, ruling over the activities with a familiarity between her and the residents that had been forged through her time and dedication to the community. I wondered at her desire to live here; she seemed so normal, so much from our world and not the one of the island. I wondered how long she’d been there and how long she might stay. I watched her all throughout the picnic, admiring her ease and fluidity with the crowd gathered on the edge of the water.

Upon leaving the island several days later, the handsome and husky waterman helped Pinky board the ferry, and then to my surprise I saw it; their transparent faces showed all. Pinky had fallen for a local boy. Now I saw her desire to bridge her life between the mainland and this island out of history, but I didn’t really think about it more deeply than that. However, Pinky always lingered in my mind in some sort of emblematic way.

Two years later and a lot more than distance between me and Pinky, I suddenly understand. Living in a small town in New Jersey with my son, not from here but filled with a feeling of belonging to this community. A local told me once that though I’m not from here, my son will be. That filled me with something, a sense of having roots for us to put down here. My son could feel the solidity of home base.

And then, something else. Pinky still lingers in my mind, and I smile at the reason. One night this summer in the middle of a hurricane I met a local boy. The minute we saw each other our story already started to write itself. Somehow, in this place I’ve come to love and call home, I found someone that brings to my life even more joy than I could have imagined. From the moment we began our first real conversation, it hasn’t stopped. Our faces shone so bright that night you could have read a newspaper in the dark by the light they reflected.

I’ve moved. A lot. In fact, three times in the past two years in this town alone. I have always been someone who has called many places home. Even my mom writes each new entry in her address book in pencil. So there’s no one as surprised as me at the feeling of never wanting to call anyplace home but this place we share. At falling in love with a local boy. My life has been made more wonderful by the presence of this man, who flooded my life with joy. The feeling that fills my heart, lungs and chest is so tremendous it must be seeping out and getting all over everyone I meet. I love to think I’m leaking happiness. Nothing held back; no games, no pocket aces. No secrets. Acceptance of how we come to one another bearing our gifts and our flaws. Many happy days and months later, it suddenly hits me with such force I almost stumble: I am Pinky.

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