Well, trapped may be a little dramatic,  but if you drew a diagonal line on a map cutting off the American southeast,   that’s what the weathermen did today, effectively trapping me in Florida. Map of weather line

The line is unfortunately made up of extremely strong storms and tornadoes.    The Weather Channel is pointing out towns that I normally drive through, towns that I sleep in sometimes on my way home.

So I’ll have to spend a little more time in this almost-paradise of palm trees and ocean beaches and withering hot temperatures while I wait out these storms here in Florida.   I need a little more time visiting with my Mom anyway.

This probably doesn’t look like much of a picture – we drive by nursing homes without a second thought –


–  but one of those windows contains everything that my Mom’s life has become. She spends her time working hard to make sense of each present moment and find the words to communicate fleeting impressions.

I brought her photos to look at today, old family photos.  She was once a beautiful young photographer’s model and art student in Chicago.  Then she was a professional “career woman,”  as they used to say,  and my own Mom.   Then she and my Dad owned and operated a music store in a shopping mall. . . . .

Cousin Lois from the Far Far North Skyped with us tonight.     Mom comprehended that someone “live” was talking to her on the computer,  but she doesn’t remember her own computer-using days.   She liked the pictures I showed her, but it was very tiring for her to remember all these things.  Even my relative “youth” and strength and health was actually a world apart from hers, behind that window.

I left her and went out to find a new home for myself for the next couple of days, while the storms pass.

Tuckaway Front view

It’s a nice home-away-from-home.


Complete with kitchen….


And a nice view from the dining area.

Through the Blinds

I opened my back door  (or is that the front door?)  and went out to the beach.

Stairs to Beach
And then just stared and stared.   I wasn’t elated, as I thought I would be.

Beach view

Maybe I’m tired too, or maybe my thoughts were getting heavy.  What happened to my Mom?   What happens to our lives here on earth?   What’s left that’s important here?   How important are these things?

Beach surf

I looked down at my feet in the wet sand and thought of all the centuries past and the people who walked these shores then.   Family after family, human after human,  men and women stayed alive and lived lives as best they could and then – their lives were over.   Disease, old age,  a sudden spear in the back,  a shark or a riptide,  and their souls left this earth.

Like an upward rain,  souls fly upwards at death, all leaving this earth.  As my Mom’s will some day.  And mine.  And yours.   And newer generations will walk over the same ground as we have walked, and they will walk on to the end of their lives and join the flow of souls, upwards, back to their Creator to account for the precious time of testing that we call this life.

Perhaps I’m hearing the background noise from the Weather Channel telling us of death and destruction tonight.

Once when my daughter and I were on our way to a happy shopping trip,  we came across a traffic accident, and she said:  “Every day is a bad day for someone.”

DeckI’ll be pondering that for a couple of days while the ocean surf pounds out its rhythms.

Such a beautiful planet to live out our lives on.    I’m here now to be with my Mom towards the end of hers.


In Christendom,  personal evening prayers often include prayers for those who are struggling with their dying moments each night.    And it would be good to pray tonight for all those in misery and despair as they survey their losses from these tornadoes.

We’re all sons of Adam and daughters of Eve – not quite yet in a real Paradise.



Explore posts in the same categories: Citizen of this world, Death, Family, Travel

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  1. sueslaght Says:

    Such a difficult time watching our parents deteriorate. Sending you energy and wishing you peace.

  2. Thank you kindly. Energy and peace are much needed. Such beauty here in Florida, but when I think of Mom there are just tears in my eyes, and I’m grateful for the chance to give her all the love and comfort that I can.

  3. I just loved our SKYPE visit!
    THANKS SO MUCH…almost unbelievable what modern technology hath wrought !
    One of my favorite sayings is to the effect that people will move Heaven & Earth to get to a funeral…better they try that hard to visit while the person is still alive!
    SOMEWHERE…I have the newspaper clipping showing the “Modern Career Girls in Chicago” article in the Chicago newspaper! It depicted your Mom & roommates….

    • Oh, how true – we go to funerals and then feel sorry that we didn’t see them more when they were still alive. How’d you end up with that clipping? ha ha I wonder if your Mom bought up several copies of the Chicago Trib. that day.

  4. The clipping was from my Mom…
    Heads up…I just posted to a distant MOCINE cousin…about your blog. He is quite interested in CHURCH issues…he is from South Africa. His name is STEVE HAYES.

  5. Our Moms – quite the career women in Chicago in the ’40s. Hurray! A new cousin? Welcome!

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