A Long Journey to April

the journey has been oblique
feet sinking into sandy depths
our future a nebulous
vanishing point
drifting like sand dunes
into April

Shuffling our feet through March we have skipped into one of my favorite months...April. 
Speaking it out loud, APRIL, is like biting into a sweet crisp Fuji apple.

So why do I write today? I haven't been able to keep my little blog going, but for some reason I didn't want to share the "WHY" in the gaps of time. After all I was excited about exploring different forms of creativity, from tempera to journals to whatever seemed interesting and FUN! Tiny wisps of spring were approaching. Ideas for sharing our glorious Asian trip stewed in my mind ready for exploration and experimenting. Why spoil it with the nitty-gritty of life, the coarse threads of mortal vulnerability. 

Somewhere in March our lives did an abrupt, sudden, unexpected, overwhelming 180 degree change. We tipped upside down, side ways, upright and flat. We found ourselves in a gyroscope, dizzy with varying perspectives and possibilities. One seemingly innocuous medical test turned into full blown open heart surgery, literally over night. No not me, but my husband, Howard,  who had already had two major surgeries in the past year.  He has had more than his share of health challenges.

Early in the morning hours of a seemingly ordinary day, we left our home filled with the detritus of daily living; dishes in a sink, toaster and raspberry jam left on the counter, sorted piles of laundry on the washer, drooping plants in need of nourishment, bed tousled from a night's restless sleep, oil paints and brushes open ready for use, bills stacked on desk waiting payment....a seemingly ordinary day except that Howard needed to be at the hospital for an early morning test. A few days earlier a doctor had seen a little something on the echo cardiogram and thought it should be further observed.

We didn't return that once ordinary day, rather the "little spot" on the heart turned into bypass surgery, open heart, the splitting of the body, the heart held in the hands of competent surgeons, savers of lives. We couldn't go home to think about it. It had to be done. And it was. 
Are we ever prepared for these enormous, unexpected, smothering events in our lives? Maybe it is better to be innocent and taken by surprise. I don't know. But we were definitely taken by surprise. The surgery went perfectly. The recovery started out smoothly, but then mental and physical events happened, occurred, obstructed the journey back to recovery. Nevertheless we went home. Within a few difficult days we returned to the hospital. Five days later we are home once again.To STAY!

While we hibernated in the hospital vault, Spring arrived.  

This morning the bird feeder has been refilled our missed birds are returning. The American flag whips in the brisk breeze. Green shoots up everywhere.  The laundry is done, the jam tossed out, the plants grateful for a healthy dose of water, bedding freshly laundered....hmmm the bills not miraculously paid. Shiny silver linings drape us like a warm wool shawl.  Lazy, rolling beach waves wash over us with GIFTS OF THANKFULNESS, GRATITUDE.

we learn so many lessons
as we walk through
our allotted days.
healing can happen
appreciation for the calls and letters
profound gratitude for skilled doctors
caring nurses
blessed to not have a
heart attack
walking Cambodia and India
time to reflect
time to read
time to be grateful
zest for living
Silver Linings
blessing our days.

 My fourteen hour hospital days of worry, hovering, intervening, consulting and note taking stretched me until I was bone weary. Thankfully there were a few peaceful hours to read, learn, appreciate, observe others and wonder. There were even fewer moments to try to be open to creativity. Bless my i Pad. While sitting on the hard faux leather chair, the idea for i Padoodl's popped in my mind, as welcome as a bag of Peanut M & M's. A bit of experimenting and playing around to add COLOR to the GRAY day.

As we step into April, may my emerging lighter heart and inner peace that my husband will be strong and healthy in the near future, add a smile to your day as it does to mine.  

 Feel free to copy these funky little i Padoodl's. Send to someone you know is having challenges of their own. 

Remember to add Yellow to your day. Yellow plus Black makes for a luscious Green, the GIFT OF LIFE.



  1. Wow. What an experience. I will take time to write you privately. Please know of my love and concern for you and Howard. ... Becky

  2. I love your ending sentence. Wouldn't we all be better off if we were able to always remember and feel our blessings. My heart goes out to you. I know from my mom being with my dad through several heart surgeries that it is very hard on both the patient and the family especially the spouse. Hope he is recovering perfectly.


Thank you for visiting my blog today. I appreciate the time you take to say hello. Warmly, Sharon