William James Hines
― Christopher Hitchens, Hitch-22: A Memoir
- looking or sounding sad and dismal.
I'm looking and sounding rather sad and dismal at this time... it comes and goes, it shifts and sways. Th process of grief...it's this whole thingy.
Yesterday, I woke up at 4 am, did all of my rituals and was in the birthday groove. I received this from my Dad. Arriving at 3:46 (meaning 9am East coast time)
I answer the phone..."Hey DAD!!!!!!"
It's not my Dad. It's the Hospital Chaplin. A woman's voice, a professional "Hello this is..."
There is no getting round what this means...
And so...it begins.....
it comes and goes, it shifts and sways.
It's light and love and it's heavy and pain...coming and going...different layers and different levels.
You know-moms. They think of everything all at once all the time.
My instant response is to reassure her that my birthday is meaningless, I celebrated yesterday and today is all about Dad.
However, i do understand the reality is- it is true - from now until my own passing...my birthday will always be shared with the anniversary of my fathers death. Which for me will be a celebration of his life.
I view this as poetic vs sad. You know, I'm not all that thrilled at this time but I am reverent underneath it all.
We already shared birthday months anyway. September babies.
And don't you know, Kainoa makes chicken noodle soup as Christian makes chocolate chip cookies. And they are serious cooks as in-it's all from scratch with a ton of love.
I'm like -oh. This cookie is helping me. Oh...this soup is warming my heart. At the same time I do prefer to be a hot mess alone...Yet as I was trying to isolate myself in the dark-in comes Mark and Michelle and Kainoa. They are just sitting with me. When I said I feel bad to have them sit with me as I'm a hot mess..our little filipino lady told me to "suck it up"
"We are here and we love you and all this is -is the other arm of love"
Which, cracked me up and melted me all at the same time because our little Michelle says things like "suck it up" in the voice of a sweet little fairy.
She makes me laugh. I told her I don't want the little pol-a-pinos in her belly to be around my sadness. She told me she already talked to them about this. She already talked to her children about the second arm of love. This woman. She's just so very....
Then there is my friend Karen who is just always there. She's like that. From 5000 miles away. She's just there.
And then there is David. David is also 5000 miles away. I can say all of my truths in all different ways and forms and be in every state of emotion a person can be in and the man just never makes me wrong for any of it. He just holds and helps me through. I'm grateful, so grateful.
I woke up feeling super intensity moving through my whole body. Just straight out crying and that felt so much better than the massive headache/cry/meditate of yesterday from the stand point of being in my own body but it was also not great.
What she somehow manages to do is weave her incredible wisdom into a story like..,.some amazing integrated awareness of now and ancient wisdom integration ninja combined with knowing me which seems to do some kind of bullseye thing to me where she just nails it. Waking me up where I am sleeping. Bringing me right back to the center of my own heart. I chose that image because we are wearing 3D glasses so we can see things in an expanded way. That's sort of what she helps me do when I get stuck.
and other wisdom reminders said in just the right way where I can actually hear them.
Mostly, my decision to not go home, was me respecting his wishes at a level I was very uncomfortable with in terms of not being there "live" yet, felt good in other ways and particularly from the standpoint of honoring what he wanted. To honor someone beyond what I may want....that's really important. I've been on auto-pilot there, listening keenly and the one time I wasn't on social media for over a day, he calls me "Yo, just making sure you aren't on an airplane on your way here...I wouldn't be very happy about that." Which made me laugh because you just never had to guess with my Dad. He would just...let you know....
Every call, every text, every facetime... that was all there was. Although that was true before, it was even more true this last 7 months.
After all that treatment, while the cancer did indeed shrink, his heart just couldn't take it another second. The thing about my Dad is, he knew things. He knew he wouldn't die of Cancer, that it would be his heart and I believe he knew that because he could feel what his truth was, what was going on in his body in a very real way. Much more so than anyone could imagine.
In our tribe, he really was the Head Chief of our family. In many many ways.
The chief of a tribe is its leader.
To my Dad, everyone in his Tribe mattered. Every child born, mattered. Our family...the most important thing.
That last birthday text I received from my Dad. That's really who he was with me for many years now.
My intellectual daughter
My beautiful daughter
My loving daughter
My caring daughter
He certainly was not thrilled that I moved 5000 miles away but as he began to understand and enjoy technology, it was sweet because my parents were doing the same thing to me, that I do to my son when facetime happens. Looking to see
Are you happy
Are you healthy
My joy, my happiness, my freedom...my enjoying my life...that is what made him happy. Period. End of story.
And so....as the Head Chief's Daughter....
Tree of Souls
The tree sits in a basin roughly 60 meters in diameter, shielded by an unusual formation of rock arches that give the impression of a shell encasing it, increasing its sense of security and protection. The tree is difficult to find due to its location right at the heart of Pandora's natural
The Tree of Souls: spiritually significant for at least 3,000 years.
The Tree of Souls, besides being a connection to Eywa, also works as a way for her to directly interact with the world through the seeds of the tree. The tree has the capability to connect directly to the human nervous system, despite humans lacking a queue. The roots of the Tree of Souls are capable of initiating a neural linkwith the Na'vi, like with the Tree of Voices. This allows all of the Na'vi to unite as one.
In this way, in my own space, now is an excellent time for me to grieve as his daughter. I'm 5000 miles away. As much as I want to be helpful, I'm not really being all that helpful... not with all of my....unknown shifts and sways...
It's one thing to be sitting next to me talking about the other arm of love. It's an entirely different experience to have no physical access to me and experience my shifts and sways.
So I'm glad to have this 48 hours where I can be within my own connection with my father and really just allow whatever I feel to be processed with the added benefit of the wisdom and love my friends have to give me.
David "Celebrate your connection with your Father your way...right now.."
Momi "For Him, it is literally all good now"
Michelle "This is the other arm of love"
Kainoa "I made chicken soup, you're handling a lot today, we will all eat together"
Christian "I am making chocolate chip cookies"
And don't you know.....Christian says
"Someone told me once....about chocolate chip cookies"
And that was me, but that wasn't me..it was Dr Miller as he shares What really matters at the end of life....
I'm like "Christian, you are a very good listener!" He may not have remembered it was me but does that really matter? He made COOKIES!!!!!!!
Our Head Chief
“Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you're there.
It doesn't matter what you do, he said, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that's like you after you take your hands away. The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime.”
― Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451
HULA HELPS A LOT!!!!!
To end for today...just some Hawaiian goodness.....
Aloha is a value, one of unconditional love.
Aloha is the outpouring and receiving of the spirit.
The value of work: To work with intent and with purpose.
To “seek best life.” Our purpose in life is to seek its highest form.
The value of mission and vision.
The value of perseverance. To persist, to continue, to perpetuate. Never give up.
KŪLIA I KA NU‘U:
The value of achievement and excellence. “Strive to reach the summit.”
Pursue personal excellence in all you do.
The value of hospitality, a hospitality of complete giving.
Welcome guests and strangers with your spirit of Aloha.
Those who are family, and those you choose to call your family.
As a value, ‘Ohana is a human circle of complete Aloha.
The value of teamwork: Collaboration and cooperation. Harmony and unity.
People who work together can achieve more.
The Kaona of LOKAHI, Is Inherent ONENESS, Connectedness to the Heaven, to the Earth, and All Life and All Relations.
The value of communication, for “All of us.” We are in this together.
Learn to speak the language of we. The Kaona Is All Inclusiveness. We Are One.
One’s personal sense of Responsibility and Sacred Duty.
“I accept my responsibilities and Reason for Being, and I will be held accountable.”
The value of learning. To know well. To seek knowledge and wisdom. We Are Here To Learn, Grow and Expand into Greater Aloha/Love/Harmony as We Walk Up the Mountain of Life.
The value of humility. Be humble, be modest, and open your thoughts.
To honor the dignity of others.
Conduct yourself with distinction, and cultivate respectfulness.
The value of leadership. Lead with initiative, and with your good example.
You shall be the guide for others when you have gained their trust and respect.
The value of stewardship. To take care of.
To serve and to honor, to protect and care for.
“Thank you”, as a way of living.
Live in thankfulness for the richness that makes life so precious.
NĀNĀ I KE KUMU:
Look to your Sense of Place and sources of spirit, and you find your truth.
KA LĀ HIKI OLA:
“The dawning of a new day.” Optimism.
The value of hope and promise.
…and one of the most well known and used philosophies of Hawaiians of yesterday and today:
The value of integrity, of rightness and balance.
The feeling of contentment when all is good and all is right.