June 23, 2015

raven-life

Six months ago today, Mom came home and the adventures began.

She’s been home long enough to forget that she was ever gone, and Bellingham is just where her son lives, for now. Last night she asked me who Kevin was. We are deep in the twilight zone here. All of the daytime napping has really thrown Mom for a loop. She hasn’t wanted to listen to her books for the last couple of days, so I put the TV on for background voices. It was Kevin’s one day off this week, and we slept through most of it. Even my faithful buddy Einstein stayed in bed with us-which is pretty remarkable for a six-month old puppy, if you ask me. The day must have really dragged for Mom, with no sound but the television, and no other stimulus or activity. I got back up around one and took Einstein out. There, on the compost pile, was Sweetie…and three other ravens. I think they are her offspring, I could hear the trademark gargling of hungry babies being fed when I went out. They were her size, so they must be about ready to leave the nest. Even the crows were quiet, with that many ravens here. And the coolest part was when Sweetie took wing and slowly circled over my head, lower and lower, until I could pick out the details of feather and claw. If my eyesight were better, I could probably have seen my own reflection in her eye. I guess she must have really liked the moldy salmon I put out there. What majestic creatures they are! With their glossy beauty and intelligence, it’s easy to see why they are revered in story and art by many Native Americans.

The abundance and diversity of wildlife in the Puget Sound is truly astounding. But it is also quite fragile. Pollution in the waters is reaching critical levels, affecting the entire food chain. Warmer than normal temperatures and low rainfall are changing the habitat around us. There are tragic consequences with the changes. For example, scientists have recently discovered that beaked dolphins are being slaughtered by polar bears. The dolphins are venturing farther north because rising sea temperatures are changing their feeding grounds. The polar bears have run out of sea ice and are staying on land to hunt, farther south. And when hunger meets food… It saddens me to think that some of the wonders I have seen up close and personal, could disappear in my own lifetime. It makes my own little Island home ever more precious to me. I am immeasurable glad that I won’t have to spend the rest of my life in a concrete jungle, while the natural world disappears. Grateful, too, that the morning sounds I hear come from the throats of a thousand birds, and not traffic. It’s a foghorn I hear in the distance, not a siren. When I look up at night, I can see the brilliance of stars, not streetlights. In our little corner of the world, all is yet well. (…and all manner of things be well.)

Mom was in such a hurry to eat her four bites of dinner last night, and Kevin got a good sample of what Mom is like bored these days. Ah…the talking clock. I did something that may make the time checks easier, at least during the night. She came out numerous times after her bath last night. She almost always will go into the kitchen and get herself a cup of coffee, and then go back to her table and check the time. Then she will go back to bed until the next time. Last night, though, she stayed up until well past nine, and I finally suggested to her that she go to bed. “If you say so,” she mumbled as she shuffled off. I have ordered her a talking watch, that hangs on a chain. This way, she can check the time before she even gets out of bed. Of course, it could become a nightmare if we are out somewhere-in a restaurant, say…or a waiting room. And I don’t know if the voice will be male or female. She responds better to a male voice. She likes the audiobooks to be read by a man, and tends to not like those read by females. Kevin’s brother and his wife will be here for a couple of days at the end of the week.  It will be really great to see them and catch up. It will be engaging and entertaining for Mom, and Einie will be in seventh heaven-they have two dogs. They’re pretty small, a Yorkie and a chihuahua. But Einstein showed great restraint last week playing with a Yorkie pup his age, so I think he’ll be gentle enough once he gets over the initial excitement.

And next week I will finally get to see the surgeon. The authorization came through for the surgery and reconstruction, so now it’s just a matter of scheduling. I am also interested in the particulars of the surgery(s). I want to know everything about it. I found myself in the rather surreal position last night of window shopping for breasts. Kevin and I were trying to decide on size. I have been an amply breasted woman since my sophomore year in high school, and I am so over it. I would love to be able to not wear a bra now and then. Heck, I’d like to be able to pitch overhand, bowl straight, and run without holding them up. Who am I kidding…run? Still… And, luckily for me, Kevin says he would be just as happy with a small, perky pair. I don’t want to hear it, sisters, if you want the extra, you’re welcome to it. As long as I have enough to stuff into a corset, I’m good. It will be nice to nail down the timing, too. If it isn’t urgent, it would be nice to push it toward Fall, when the season slows down and it’s easier for Kevin to get time off. But not too far, I don’t want to be laid up for his birthday or Christmas. And my sister will have to travel, so we should do it before, the weather turns bad. At any rate, it will have to be done before the end of the year, when the authorization runs out. Today-bathe, clean, phone calls. Let’s see if any of that happens.

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