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Friendships

Sincerely Yours

 

Once or twice this side of life, we come across a beautiful scene, an unforgettable person, an unexplainable bliss filled moment, and/or the sinking into the life of another being’s sorrow in total empathy.  Each are defining moments that we revisit when time slides into memories.

I searched for so many self-help methods, I remember being admonished for doing so.  I don’t know if I was more surprised that it should have been a bad thing, or if I felt shyly embarrassed; in retrospect, maybe both.  Ironically, the process served me well.

At a group therapy session, we were asked to close our eyes and visualize a place we would like to be in for a half an hour, preferably one that delighted us in some way.  I still go there to fall asleep in prayer.

My God parents visited us in Sao Paulo just before we moved to Niteroi. It was then that we went to Araruama. My father must have taken the photo. My mother is to the left in white.

The pure white sand beach glistened even below the clear emerald and aquamarine water.

The see-through colors at the Araruama beach in Brazil was empty except for tall bales of wind swept salt foams.

I ran through them and heard their soft cracking like chimes and felt enveloped as if inside a translucent bubble.

I ran into the water and floated so easily as the salt held me up me like a feather.

With eyes open below the water, I found a few treasured shells, and I still have them.

Somewhere behind me stood my parents and Godparents.   Keep Reading

Annabeth the Preacher’s Daughter

Defining moments in our lives are carved in the air to stand as tall as statues.  They are the pillars in our gardens.  They remind us of who we became because of them.  They call to us in spirit when we have nowhere else to go, and their friendship never ends.  Each conversation is a beginning.  Each farewell reassures a reunion.  It is an ever flowing stream.

Friends have a voice that when heard it’s a song.  We can dance to its beat because we know it.  We are at ease.  Annabeth Miguel Sayles sat at the school’s office on the first day of her new job, answering the phone, looking through papers, and wearing a smile with an uncertain confidence.  She was the lone warrior at Horizon’s Academy in Haiku, and many were glad she could muster what it took to do the job so sorely needed to be fulfilled.  She looked like a Precious Moments Angel figurine.

She took to the helm ever so grateful to make do as a widow, a Mom of two adult children, and a grandma of three.  As I recall, there had been a shift in administration.  She amazingly orchestrated all that was needed even in delivering successful fundraisers held on a golf course on the West Maui Mountains in a building designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for Marilyn Monroe.  Getting along with everybody that came along required composure, tenacity, and a sense of humor.  Parents, teachers, administrators, aids, and students all passed by her and needed her for this or that, and she answered and took care to see that all was done and completed.  She stayed long hours.  Her elegance was prime.

In the midst of school functions, we discovered in conversation a mutual torch: being preachers’ daughters.  I think we both said simultaneously now that is funny !  Something about her natural beauty, her stately humility, her steadfast faith, her sincere devotion to family, her admirable strength of spirit, her common sense, and her discreet attention to the needs of others, set her apart. Her character qualities are imprinted on a solid marble like presence in attendance in my life.  The details of cruelties she endured are locked in a room of confessions in the heart of hearts.  We got it from our fathers who prayed to Our Father.  We were cemented. Keep Reading

FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE

Isn’t it funny how we meet people seemingly accidentally and then discover life would never have been the same without them ?  Jeannette sat alone in church, and one Sunday, I made it a point to join her.  We sang out of tune at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Keokea on Maui.  We chatted and I invited her for tea and lunch to be company for my Mom.  The two cocooned on the couch and spoke one or the other always smiling and nodding.  I wasn’t quite sure they understood any words as Jeannette tried to remember the French and my Mom would slide into Romanian yet they still cordially carried on like two birds in flight from tree to shrub and twig to fence.  The household seemed livelier as Jeannette came along in rides to the stores, and stayed to help me in the kitchen.  She insisted on holding my cutting board as I chopped peppers, onions, and carrots galore.  We meshed in stirring, mashing, and pouring while doting on my Mom with a little of this and that.  We found laughter in the fridge, on the stove, and over the table.  Little by little we said it all and she was there to dry my tears and understood what I could not.  She was the HOPE I wished in life for a friend.  She said I was the FAITH she needed to hear from a friend.  Her story carved a statue in marble.  Her strength dissolved iron.  Her gentleness feathered a breeze.

Even now that she departed, I wish to be nearer—she was a lady of poise galore.  Sometimes, I stop and sense her presence, perhaps it’s just the memory.  Ours was a friendship born in prayer.  I HOPE as she hoped.

Alike I had become friends with Cindy whom I visited at Upcountry Legends, her store.  She called my little guys “the group” and somehow from the start we cinched a friendship in conversation about God.  Yeah, the island attracts all kinds of people.  We met to talk about everything God related.  She gave me  a book that sits on my shelf A PARENTHESIS IN ETERNITY, by JOEL S. GOLDSTEIN.  Of its entire content which I love, her note on the cover is best and filled with her LOVE …and that is Cindy’s story.  Petit and smart even as a child, she still walks on clouds as her mother appropriately reminded the family.  She was born and raised in New York City, and used her daughter’s name for the shoe store: Taryn.  I honestly don’t know how she sold anything as she mostly spoke to everyone of God.  We cannot exhaust the topic and this is where Jeannette joined the party.  We three nested our lives in resolving the craters of sadness by refusing to stay stuck in the “mucks.”  We mastered the art of finding the best in the moment.  Our dearest Cindy was the one among us who as a child prayed to God for wisdom.  I was stumped and ashamed as I prayed for pretty knees.   Keep Reading