Who am I really?  And what am I “about”?

At any precise moment I can’t say exactly as I’m still meandering along finding different aspects of “me” along my way … a little insight here as I pass over a bump in the road; bigger bumps, bigger insights…a little life “aha” lesson as I experience Berkeley periodically with my darling daughter who is studying architecture there.

Some facts that are indisputable…  the long awaited 50th birthday has come and gone (how DID that happen!) and I’m not a blonde as some older photos might suggest!   I’m finally, mostly, content in my own skin with my real hair color, and the size and shape God has given me; still trying to airbrush the details but OK with the overall package.  I find I either have to take the whole package of me as is or I’m left fighting small battles with myself that only make life’s bumps bumpier and don’t erase the signs of experience that write themselves along my eyes and hairline.

I have one darling biological daughter who follows in my footsteps, and those of her maternal grandmother, with her own photography skills and creativity.  Unlike her mom, however, my girl is gifted at math and fine motor skills and so is pursuing her architectural dream at UC Berkeley – and I couldn’t be prouder of the woman she is becoming.   I have a wonderful husband who has the courage, strength, endurance and love enough to hold my hand without letting go as I make my way along.   With him came my step-daughter, who, though I frequently don’t understand or relate to as easily as my own daughter, ironically in many ways is more like me than the child I gave birth to.   She, without her ever having the knowledge of it, has taught me much about myself.   Both the girls are the same age (insta-twins) and settling into their Senior year of college and their respective routines.

Some time ago, we lost our beloved furry “baby” when our pint sized ball of fur, Daisy, passed away.  Regardless that she is not here in body, her spirit lingers in all wonder and joy in our lives.  We  miss her terribly but never lose sight of the lessons she taught us in those days when she’d wait patiently for her “daddy” to take her for a walk and how she never, ever, lost sight of her enthusiasm and joy in it.  That character trait in my furry girl I will always strive to achieve myself; consistent, abundant, “dance in circles” joy in response to any (and every) moment in my day no matter how many times I’ve passed the same way.  Daisy’s legacy of the “gift of walk” was a “10” on her scale ever single day of her live – abosultley no exceptions.

Sheldon “baby turtle” still resides in her small pond in our back yard and carries on Daisy’s tradition of grounding me in God’s world when too much head spinning chaos threatens to overwhelm.  One look at at my adorably clunky little turtle and I again remember why I’m on this earth – to love – only to love and be loved.

We’re not very different from any middle class family and our days are spent working,  keeping up with our kids ever expanding lives and being thankful when we all land safely back at home; wherever that is for anyone at any given time.

Thank you, God, here and now; thank you for my life thus far, those people you have put in it; the easy ones and the not so easy ones, and thank you for the bumps in the road that strengthen me and the soft breezes on quiet nights when all is well.  Blessings to everyone who passes this cyber way!

Charlotte Rose



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