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Never, ever

Reblogging: A poignant reminder… A wonderfully beautiful although sobering post.

Aging Gracefully My Ass

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_e8 The American Cemetery in Normandy

On this 75th anniversary of D-Day, I wanted to share some of the pictures from our visit to Normandy in 2014, shortly after the 70th anniversary.  Scores of WWII veterans who were part of Operation Overlord have passed away since then.  It’s highly doubtful that more than a handful of them will be with us to observe the 80th anniversary.

My visit to Normandy was one of the most moving experiences of my life.  I actually have tears in my eyes right now as I type this.  I struggle to comprehend the terror so many young men experienced that June morning 75 years ago.  And how many fathers, uncles, grandfathers never were because they fell as young men on a beach in France to defend the world against unspeakable evil.  And how many mothers and fathers never knew what happened to their sons because their…

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authentic self, Blog, childhood, Fear

From Fearless to Fearful and Back

Day 255

I was a fearless child. Growing up in the country and having the freedom to roam helped me be rather fearless. I do remember two points in time where I first felt fear as a child. One, I have written about one here on my blog, where my own thoughts were overwhelming and made me fearful.

The second memory has to do when I went with my siblings to ‘jump rocks’. Jumping rocks was what we did to move across or up and down the creek. We jumped from one exposed rock to another. I was the youngest of four children, and I am sure often the most annoying of the lot.

On this particular day, the creek was up, which made the available surface to jump to and from smaller. My siblings told me to wait on a very large rock because the jumps were too long for me to make. All was well until I looked down to see a snake and what looked like 20 babies swimming along beside the rock.

I started to scream bloody murder. All I wanted was my grandfather to rescue me, but unfortunately he was away visiting his brother. I screamed so loud, the entire community came running. No one could get me off that rock. I wanted my Grandpa.

I am not sure who finally got me off the rock, but I remember this as if it were yesterday. I know now the snakes were harmless water snakes, but at the time, they seemed deadly.

When my granddaughter was here, she started to say “scared” and the most benign things. It seems she has picked up fear of bugs at daycare. Being afraid of bugs in the mountains will not serve you well. We were able to show her bees and bugs and talk about where they lived, but I cannot help but wonder what goes on in her little mind.

Looking back, I think society influences our fear. The news, the guns, the crime, the hatred — all of it bombards us. I have made an intentional effort to limit the amount of time I read the news, spend time on Facebook, or watch too much tv. As a result, I live more peacefully and enjoy life much more.

I also think being knocked down through jobs we held, can make us fearful and believe we are not capable of all the magic that each of us possess. But the magic never dies. Sometimes we just need to unearth it.

The other day I walked by a huge grape vine wound around a tree. I remembered back to the little girl that would hike the woods with her brother, cut free the grape vine and swing like Tarzan. We drank water from the springs using leaves as our cups. That was a fearless girl. I’m glad she’s finding her way home.