September 23rd, 2012

alan - morning glory center


I woke this morning warm with gratitude.   Our Beloved Miss Kate is doing well.  Yesterday she was moved from the ICU to a neurological part of the hospital.  I talked to her on the phone.  Yes, I talked to her on the phone.  What a gift!

As president of the National Honors Society at her school, she is scheduled to speak on October 15th.  Though I believe it is important to be with and in the moment, it is also important to have a goal.  "Our" goal is that she can give her speech, even if she is in a wheelchair to do it.

Big breath.   I can feel my breath returning to the lower part of my body.  I hadn't realized how much I was holding my breath, how scared I was.  Now, I feel the waves in the pond below the waist.   

A friend of mine is a member of the Sufi community.  Years ago, some Sufi leaders drove by San Quentin and were disturbed by the misery gathered there.  They organized a visit of Sufi's and were allowed into San Quentin to chant with the men in the choir.  My friend went and said it was an amazing experience.  Usually I have difficulty passing by San Quentin because I feel the suffering there, but a few days ago I was looking across the bay at it, and in my own misery and concern over Katy, could see it differently.  I was in pain.  People there are in pain, but others have "found" Christ, or Buddhism, or Sufism, or an inner strength.  I can't know what it is for the individuals there, for those imprisoned and for those who "guard" them.   I can only know that for awhile I was imprisoned in my own misery and pain.  

There is an article in the CSM on Lynn Zwerling, who started a knitting group for male inmates in the Jessup Pre-Release Unit in Jessup, MD.  At this point 254 men have passed through the Knitting Behind Bars program.  Its annual budget is $350.00 which Zwerling and fellow volunteers raise selling yarn-ball necklaces at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival., a social network for knitters also contributes.   Knitting, for these men, is a path to tranquility and connection, and keeping warm, literally and figuratively.  I like it.  

It is a beautiful fall day here, and I know that everyday is a day for gratitude, but, oh, this one is sweet.