Gusty Winds May Exist

We have just returned from another trip to New Mexico (where signs posted with the title here –GUSTY WINDS MAY EXIST — used to amuse us). They don’t any more. I have written before about the trauma of divorce affecting our family. Everybody is in therapy!

Amidst the struggles for “closure” (a word our 6-year-old granddaughter introduced into conversation the other night – too wise too soon — there is humor.

I had told her last summer when she stayed with us for seven weeks that whenever I find a feather on the ground I believe it is a message from my father. My dad died in 1998, and I honest-to-goodness adopted this belief as part of my grieving process. I hoped it would give her the idea that when someone dies they never really leave the people who love them. (Her mother has a terminal disease.)

At the B&B where we were staying, she was with her grandfather and me for two nights. One morning we took a walk around the acreage, stopping at the horse corral to see if we could entice the two brown Arabians to come to us for a loving pat on the nose. First, however, we noticed an enormous pile of “horse apples” near the railing. In one there happened to be a large black feather stuck quill side down, as if it had been thrown like a dart.

Maya said, “Look! Your dad sent a message. It’s not good. Something bad is going to happen.” Her grandfather quickly said: “I think we had better ask Papa Bob to aim a little better next time.” I added: “I don’t think he sent that one. It doesn’t look like the others. He wouldn’t choose black.”

Still, it made me feel a little fearful, as a lot of bad things are happening to that little girl. We hope for closure soon.

At the end of our visit we (Daddy, too) went to Santa Fe, and we had a great time at the Santa Fe Children’s Museum. Maya prefers the outdoor play areas, although this time she decided to go into a room that is hidden under a hill of plants. It is for science, mainly. In one corner is a box of worms. It is sort of a treasure chest, a combination of wood shavings of some kind and organic material from the clippings and veggie scraps. The worms are at work making good soil, and children are invited to find them (usually in the corners). Maya and a little boy named Charlie got into a contest, and Maya came up with 15 worms in her hand. She was a happy camper. Such joy children have in a place where they can explore and the adults with them can see they are safe and learning. Such joy for grandparents to see a child forgetting for a few moments that gusty winds do exist.

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