I carry a tent, lawn chairs, a change of clothes, blankets and a hammock in my car. I laugh and say ,” you never know when an impromptu camping trip may come up and you want to be prepared”. There is some truth to this but it is also curious to me how it all came about that I do carry these things with me. Having a Grandchild is a wondrous thing. Being a medical social worker for 30 years, working 10+ hours every day was the norm. Once Kesey was born, my focus changed and I turned inward in many ways, listening to an ancient call that I barely understood or acknowledged.
The year he was born I spent the entire Spring and Summer walking with him, for about an hour almost every day. When I could talk everyone into going, I wanted him in parks and in the river, learning to love the earth and seeing how beautiful the world we live in can be. I wanted him to know how much I loved him and how important it is to love the earth. This is what I had to share and give to him and something about having a Grandchild makes you reassess all that is your life and think more about what is important to you. What is your legacy…what do you want this person who carries your DNA and part of your name to know about you. It makes you want to be the very best of you there is to be, to show that child, “this is who I am! This is part of you!”
When I was not with him, I was in the state parks, I was in the river, I was kayaking and spending more time outside instead of work being my all. I bought my own tent when I got a small one for my Grandson. His Dad strung lights like the night sky in his tent in the living room. The boy would sit in awe and wonder. During this time, I was also building my supplies, filling my backpack, getting a hammock that could be strung up anywhere between two trees, with a spot on the Guadalupe in mind.
Spring 2017 had me visiting Boerne Lake more than I had in the past. One Saturday as I sat on the pier waiting for the SUP Yoga – Standup paddle board yoga – class to file out before taking the kayak out, another woman about my age quietly came and sat close by. She explained that she was there to get pictures of her Mother, who was 86, and was “out there” she said pointing to the other side of the lake where a group of ladies were paddling out for the yoga class. Her Mom had asked her to be there on this morning to take this picture.
She said she was envious that her Mother had time to go out and do these things but also proud of her that she still could and wanted to do the things she had begun to do since moving to the Hill Country. She told me a story about how one day her Mother was on her way to Yoga class but got trapped in traffic from an accident on I 10. She was headed towards Boerne so she followed that path, though she knew she was way too late to go to class by the time she took the Boerne exit. Instead, she went into Wal-Mart and bought a hammock. She said she wanted to make sure she had it in the car …”just in case”. I thought about this woman and how she wanted to spend all spare time outside walking, on the water, observing the world around her, working her garden and knew we heard the same Siren call. Maybe she too was hoping to be the best of herself, leaving a legacy of love for the earth behind her. It gave me much to consider and when I saw her paddle away from the class and stand on her board facing her daughter, I knew this was the shot she wanted. She wanted someone, as well as herself, to have a memory of her , just being herself.