I thought it would be useful to create a photo or image lists, like playlists that work for different activities or moods. Here are a few that fill me with love, awe, wonder, gratitude and the quiet kind of laughter.
Above, Ruby’s Aunt S sends her Christmas toys, which is especially generous given that we celebrate Chanukah and S is a cat person. Ruby is the best dog in the world, of course, but she was rescued from a Virginia farm and lacks certain social or canine skills her more urbane peers possess. She grabs things, then doesn’t know what to do with them. She does not drop things at my feet. Or fetch. Or sit when she is supposed to, or stop barking at the mailman (who actually left a card intended for his replacement while on vacations, which read BAD DOG and gave our address! ) But she is great at eating bagels, does a perfect downward dog,lets me take pictures of her wearing hats and glasses, and gives us unconditional love 24/7.
It is June and the irises are ablaze. You sit on a bench and gaze at them as the sun comes in and out behind the tree branches gently waving in the breeze. You’ve brought a good book but it’s better just doing nothing.
If you close your eyes you can be back there for a minute.
I rarely shared photos on my blog because I wanted to protect my kids’ privacy, an especially sensitive topic for parents with kids with disabilities, and a nonnegotiable for 18 year old’s who go places and do stuff, that’s as much as they’re going to share. But I feel ok sticking to initials and sharing some that bring back such happy precious moments.
Here is V graduating from the lower school into high school with my Dad. V did really well during the service and waited nicely for his diploma, but when he saw Zeyde going down the aisle, his face lit up and he reached over to give him a hug.
After 15 years, V is finally starting to ever so slightly mellow out. He attended 2 Chanukah parties and while all anyone else saw was a skinny teen wearing headphones (which were in fact a noise-cancelling tool for people with auditory processing disorders) I saw a young man able to regulate himself in overstimulating, unfamiliar environments. And a family that let him be himself.
And what looks like a nothing out of the ordinary card game was the miracle of my 2 sons sitting and playing a game together. It’s been a long time coming. No “miracle stories” here. But baby step upon baby step of progress leading to this moment of brotherly connection. Older brother B is awesome but I don’t think he’d like me sharing his photos.
So instead I bring you Einstein. Because why not?
So I rarely share photos of myself , especially ones as unflattering as this. (I was in the middle of dental work and couldn’t smile) but it conveys the feeling of accomplishment and delight I felt after completing the mile swim component of the NY Triathlon, followed by T on his bike and friend B running in the grueling heat. We participated as part of a fundraiser for V’s school. This is the closest I’ve ever come to having a tattoo. I think I look pretty fierce given that I am so not.
I was terrified before I jumped in — everyone else seemed like such serious athletes, at least they were dressed that way — and I’m such an imposter, a lah de da look at the sky lap swimmer, but I swam my fastest ever in the Hudson River, a place I’ve always dreamed of swimming.
The question I got asked the most? Did you pee in the river? I never even considered that — it wasn’t like we were in the Atlantic Ocean or anything. I hope we get to participate again this year, because now I know what to do in the Hudson to leave my mark.
My teeth are in much better shape now, so I’m looking forward to beaming through the madness.
This is a start.
Please share a photo that fills you with delight, joy, tenderness, or whatever makes you feel most alive, and explain why.