I remember the first day I worked for my Elders
It was November 2009
Nervous that we wouldn’t find things to talk about…
I had met them in the Spring of 2008 while working on a landscape gardening crew – and we tended their beautiful perennial garden.
Nervousness gave way to a sense of ease
They became my anchor.
They came to know me & my quirks
Their home became familiar territory
I’m reminded of them, of conversations, the many meals, hugs, mannerisms & habits I had the honor to witness & be a part of for the past almost 6 years.
& was told early-on “fresh ground black pepper”
And so, at lunch, went the question: would you like some FRESH GROUND black pepper?
Nearly always, the reply was YES
Markers of time, reminders are everywhere
His chair where he sat
Her chair where she sat
The clock with large numbers, easier to read, marks the time after his surgery
Pinching salt in a dish
The ubiquitous box of Kleenex
A pile of letters from another grandchild
Well-worn sweatshirts (which I feel compelled to wear, though I stop myself…)
(He stopped speaking at that point)
It was an honor to simply be with him
Even now, sitting here, pausing now & again to look around & really take in the surroundings, a swirl from past moments floods my mind
& then coming present, that sense of honor… What an honor it is to have gotten to be in these dear people’s lives over time
“We’re such lucky, lucky people” she would say.
It’s all kinda fresh, still.