Posts Tagged ‘Osho quote’

Any fool can be happy. It takes a man with real heart to make beauty out of the stuff that makes us weep.  Clive Barker

Ordinarily when Jay and I pick up Ella from school he drives and I sit in the back with our granddaughter. I monitor snacks, play games, or read books with her.

Today I am at the helm of my ’97 Toyota. Ella repeats, “Grandma’s car.” She wants to know where Grandpa is.

“He went to the doctor. He will be home later,” I tell her. But I can’t see her face in the rear-view mirror. My mindset is in sync with her older cousins. They think that a hypodermic needle is to be avoided at all costs. But since Grandpa is a grownup, he would be just fine. I assume Ella’s viewpoint to be similar.

“If Grandpa gets a shot we will give him a big hug!”

There is silence in the back seat, followed by, “Grandpa be okay. I be okay.” Ella’s sweet voice cuts through me as the chorus repeats.

“Yes, he will. Grandpa will be home soon.”

The drive from Ella’s school to our house is just over ten miles. I feel as if I am driving cross-country.

Text Grandpa as soon as you get in the door, Ter. Tell him to call so that Ella can hear his voice.

On the outside I would appear calm. The car remains on the road. I stay within the speed limit. Inside I chide myself for a stupid mistake. Ella has had two open-heart surgeries and one minor surgery on her wrist. The word doctor opens a Pandora’s Box. She does not want her grandfather to fall prey to its powers.

Fortunately Grandpa hears the beep on his phone. He is leaving the office. “Grandpa be okay” takes on a new tone as Ella hears his voice.

“Let’s hide,” she says, anticipating hide-and-seek when Grandpa returns. Our little girl has no sense of time. Jay will not be home for another twenty-five minutes. I hold her in my arms and look into her huge blue eyes, possible now since I am not behind the wheel of the car and she is not bound to her car seat.

Sure, I will play this mock-game with her. The hiding place she chooses is in plain sight. And so is our little girl’s incredible beauty. Her internal powers shine: the gifts to love unconditionally, to simply be without comparing herself to anyone, and to bounce back after every fall.

I suspect there are people who look at us as we go to a park or enter a restaurant and think, How sad! That little girl has Down syndrome. Or worse, they identify her as a tripled chromosome and call her a Down syndrome child, throw around an R-word or two, and dismiss her importance. I can’t change that notion on my own. But I can make a dent in that perception.

Organizations like the National Down Syndrome Society and our local group, The Down Syndrome Association of Greater Cincinnati, help to crush myths and show how valuable each individual is. Success for many more persons with Trisomy-21 is possible, even inevitable. Yes, the child born with the genius IQ someday may create formulas, ideas, new drugs, and inventions that change the world. But the child born with an extra chromosome has the knack for changing the heart. Now.

Ella may not be able to express Osho’s quote pictured below in words. However, she lives it. I am fortunate to be her student.

life is not logic Osho

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Life is like a prism. What you see depends on how you turn the glass. (Jonathan Kellerman)

The four-syllables in mortality sound less harsh than the one-syllable, no-coming-back word, death. I roll both terms through my brain. I may be a senior citizen, but at age 69 I play on the floor with my grandchildren. And I get up again without complaints from my knees. I can tread water for well over an hour before my bladder says it is time for a break.

In many ways my success in life has just begun. “The Curse Under the Freckles” is available online. I just found out that it is also available at Barnes and Noble. As soon as I receive copies I will schedule local signings.

But the finality notion arises because my husband and I sit in a cemetery office—as we make our own funeral arrangements. We are choosing the greenest options, as well as the cheapest-possible. Something like trying to find a bargain at a high-scale store without gasping at the sticker price. Green burial may be our choice, but green cash is disappearing from our savings.

However, we do not want our sons to add hassle to their lives. It comes to everyone and more is unnecessary. I’m amazed at how comfortable I feel. Maybe it’s the outgoing personality of our planner. Maybe I’ve learned to savor life now.

I’ve never organized a party where I knew I would not be invited—well, except this last one where I will wait on the sidelines for incineration. (Hopefully only the earth version, as if I had the slightest vision of the surprises on the other side. Although I choose not to anticipate bizarre visions.)

This moment is not morbid. In fact, I send a message to my sister to tell her she needs to keep her gorgeous voice intact. When she is in her late eighties and I am about one-hundred and something I expect her to sing at my memorial service. I leave the message with a vague reference saying that I will keep in touch. About what? The funeral or my next grandchild story? She catches the humor.

The sun shines and a gentle breeze has pushed the August heat out of the way for a while. Our lives are not perfect; no one’s is. But the grounds at Spring Grove are beautiful. I savor the lines in my skin the way I celebrate bright flowers contrasting gray rock.

I’m not sure I could honor beauty if I had never seen its opposite.

Peace upon all wherever this moment leads you. I pray that it leads you into a more powerful life.

life before death the optimism revolution


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