In October . . .I Remember

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It has been a lovely week at the rabbit patch.  October has been fair and mild.   The mornings have been misty and chilly-enough so that I have donned light sweaters.  I drive to work as the sun is rising.  I declare that watching light change is a favorite practice of mine.  Whether it is coming or going, I find light to be very beautiful.    At nightfall,  the “Harvest Moon” rose over the field and made the territory glow.  I went out to watch the October moon appear, intending to lift all sorts of salutations, thoughts of gratitude . . .and requests.  Instead I stood silently.  Somehow I knew Heaven understood.

On the way back to the farmhouse, I smelled the first fallen autumn leaves.  I have always been quite partial to this particular scent.  The fragrance of fallen leaves evokes all sorts of memories, for me-some go back as far as my childhood.  I remember being a few minutes late for supper one evening and mama wanted to know why.  I explained that I didn’t want to come in from the “brisk wind blowing the leaves around”.  Mama said that “brisk” was a fancy word, as she continued putting supper on the table. Even as a young adolescent, I was apt to take long solitary walks to the back of the fields and then through the woods, once it was autumn time.  When my own children were young, I remember smelling the scent of autumn leaves in their hair.   I have journals, I wrote for each of them that was started on the day they were born- a collection of letters I wrote to them, really.  There are pressed leaves in some of the pages, now decades old.  These are some of my most tender memories. . .and I recall  them every year, in October.

Saturday

It has been just short of a week, since I attended the “early service”, otherwise, known as daybreak.  This morning a light breeze was blowing and birds were singing-as if it were April.  Thick clouds muted the light and reduced the view of the sun to a faint golden patch, over the oldest barn.  Morning broke quietly on this day.  Cash, my boxer, still bounded around the yard, as is his habit.  Christopher Robin, a young gray cat, surveyed the property with caution.  I am quite sure he noticed, that the grass needs mowing. . .and he is right.

I came in and started a large pot of chicken cooking.  I will add pastry tomorrow morning, for it is “homecoming” at the church I grew up in.  My mother did too, and so did her mother.  My parents remain faithful and attend most every Sunday.  “Homecoming”  is always in October.  Now the church has a huge facility for such occasions.  No one will worry about rain . . or ants.  This was not the case for many years.

 Homecoming used to be held under a canopy of old oaks on the front lawn of the church.  The Saturday before, men would show up and string large rolls of wire from one tree to the next, creating a very long table.  On Sunday, the women spread tablecloths which would be held in place by large bowls of potato salad and platters of fried chicken, barbecue and deviled eggs.  There were all sorts of cakes and pies.  People cooked for days and carried their best wares.  The grounds were mowed and trimmed in the days before.  After the service on Sunday, folks put chairs and blankets out under the trees and we ate , right there under the oaks.  Women traded recipes. I just fixed a cake this week, from a recipe given to me over twenty five years ago.  Young couples walked through the crowd showing off new babies.  Children kicked off their “Sunday shoes”  after the meal, and played football.  If a child could walk, they played.  Toddlers and teenagers together.  By mid afternoon, little shoes and hair ribbons,  scattered about the lawn were collected and dishes were packed up in baskets for the ride home.  The next day, was spent getting grass stains out of trousers and socks.

Tomorrow will be a much more civilized event.  There will not be a single leaf in a bowl of chicken salad, nor adorning a twelve layer cake.  Not one biscuit  will be lost to ants and children will not soil their clothes with dirt and grass stains.  We will be seated at tables instead of the shade of old trees . . .and if it rains, oh well!  Still, I miss the former ways of homecoming.  I feel like we lost something  beautiful. . but I am sentimental in heart and old fashion, by nature.

My former “Sunday School” students are now mothers and fathers and I will see them tomorrow.  I will see my twin cousins,  Martha and Marsha.  Marsha married into the family and since they are inseparable, we gained Martha too.  I will see some dear friends from my youth-and their grandchildren.  My sister, Delores is coming too and so  is my niece, Dana.  Mama and Daddy will be there-I am sure Mama is cooking, as I write this.

I will remember people like Miss Tillie. Miss Nellie, Miss Catherine and Miss Jo-my own Sunday School teachers. I will remember Miss Dallas, who was famous for her macaroni and cheese and Mr. Styons, the pastor there, for many years.  There are many others and every bit as precious, that were part of that very beautiful  time, when I was growing up.

October makes me remember and I do not pretend to know why this is so, but it seems, in October, I go through my collection of memories .    I “never come up short”, but instead, I feel  inspired to love this world, the way I have been loved. Truly “my cup has always run over” -and it still does.   

Dear Diary, I am glad for the love that I have known since I was born, for it has made the difference.  I am glad for woodland and field -and  the light that shines on both.  I am glad for October . . . the time  . . .when I remember.

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31 thoughts on “In October . . .I Remember

  1. You said watching light change is a favorite practice of yours. How appropriate for a musician!! I love the scent of October leaves, too. There is also the rustle that goes with walking through them. Ah! October! Most favorite month for me! I loved your memories in this post.

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  2. As always you make my heart sing. I love October it is so beautiful. I love when the wind blows and the leaves are dancing to the ground. Sometimes it is just so sweet to get lost in our thoughts. Your children will love those priceless journals someday. How lucky your children are to have a sweet Mama.

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    1. they already do-They treat them like they are “holy”! I never knew when I started them-I have written in their journals til they were grown up-Of course I have one for Lyla, now. Now I keep one journal for all of them about this season of my life, as a mother. thank you dear and Happy October! love Michele

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  3. Dearest, most sweetest Rabbit.
    Your post has brought a lump to my throat, memories of my childhood back and tears to my eyes.

    Some names of all the aunties and uncles – who really weren’t related to my family but they were all called Aunty _______ and Uncle ______, where we met regularly for functions from Hatched, Matched and Dispachted (better known as Births, Wedding and Funerals) to Bonfire Nights (bit like the USA Halloween, but with bonfires and fireworks and food of the burgers, hot dogs and things like that) and Bingo Nights, Monthly special nights of a singer artist and dance of some sort.

    I recall faces, but now, many years later, their names have been lost down the tubes and pipes of my brains storage system. But I loved them all, and felt comfortable with them all.

    Lots of my family were there … cousins, aunts, uncles, my Grandma, Grandad, Mother etc … and every single moment was amazing. Everything was joy filled and thoroughly incredible.

    But.. this no longer happens. Changes are made, people move far and wide, some from this land to yours; and some from this earth to a Heavenly place.

    Thank you for sharing your own look-back. Thank you for the re-awakening of old memories. Thank you for just being you. The most incredible, wonderful, magical, amazing Rabbit (also known as Michele).
    Love you Rabbit.
    ~ Cobs. xxx

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    1. THANK YOU MY DEAREST cOBBS-YOU ARE RIGHT THAT things have changed and famililes lose ther loved ones to places further away. I grew up with the same neighbors and family was within walking distance. How sad that has changed. How blessed we were to know the former generations and cousins. Memories warm me all over and make me determined to salvage as I can, what I do have, right now. I am glad for you right this moment-to have met you makes technology a blessing. love Michele

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      1. *nods in agreement*
        And I give thanks every day Rabbit, that I was led to you.
        I’ve always meant this … but especially so today, for today hasn’t been a great day in the life of Cobs. So to come to blogland and find a message waiting for me from you, is like a warm hug to my heart.
        Love you Rabbit. Big time. ~ Cobs. xxx

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      2. Oh Rabbit, well, I had a bit of a time of it a couple of weeks ago. I had a really bad fall. Injured my arm, bruises in various places, massively bruised on my arm, really badly so. Hit my head on the dressing table, banged my knees on the floor and bruised one, hurt my shoulders and neck.

        But .. I don’t remember falling. I’d had a shower, and was sat on the side of the bed doing my neck exercises. I do these with my eyes closed so that I can fully concentrate on what I’m doing.

        Then … I found myself on the floor, very confused, and couldn’t move. I was aware of great pain, but couldn’t seem to move. I called out to my husband and he came to try and help.

        I was so shocked by what had happened I didn’t go out of the house for six days. I booked an appointment to see my doctor – not over the injuries but to ask him why I possibly didn’t know I was falling, from a sitting position on the side of the bed. I had no memory of the moments before what happened and no memory of feeling my body falling.

        I had to have some tests done, along with an ECG then went back to see him on Monday of this week. Within moments of being in the room with him he told me I wasn’t allowed to drive my car anymore.

        Now driving my car is a BIG thing to me. There are quite a few things I can no longer do (due to someone driving into the back of a car I was a passenger in some years ago – from which I suffered a lower spinal injury). I can’t walk for miles like I used to. Can’t play active sports – like tennis, which I loved – can’t sit or stand in one position for very long, and can’t walk very far at all because I get something I call – ‘The Creeping Dead’ – which is a numb feeling which starts over my hips (normally one side but it can do both sides at once) and slowly works it’s way down the sides and backs of my legs, if I try to continue to walk.
        There are other things … but we’ll leave it there.

        So…I learnt to drive. No one and nothing was going to take away my freedom, so I took lessons, and was so determined that I passed my driving test first time, after just one month of lessons – one a week, except for the last week when I had two.

        I LOVED to drive. Love driving. So to be told that I’m no longer allowed to drive was like someone being really spiteful towards me.
        I didn’t cry in the Doctors office, but I almost did.

        He said that these blackouts were too dangerous to consider driving, because one could happen while I was driving and (he clapped his hands together and said) ‘all over’ – meaning ‘dead’.

        Now I know it’s sensible. REALLY sensible, and I understand that. But … it’s made me as miserable as can be. I know I’ll snap out of it, because I always do. I don’t let things like this beat me. But … at the moment it’s just made me a bit miserable.

        (Add to this that I don’t like Mr.Cobs driving at all!)

        I have to go back and see the doctor again soon. He gave me some literature to read, and told me what he actually thought it might be. But perhaps after another test or two we might be able to pin it down and with a bit of luck, sort it out so that it doesn’t happen any more.

        And that, as I’m wont to say – normally about crafted things, is all there is to it.

        Hence the reason I’m filled with gratitude for your prayers, my beautiful friend.
        Love you Rabbit. Muchly. ~ Cobs. xxx

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      3. My dear friend-I am so sorry to hear all of this. I do not like hearing you are suffering in any way. I am sad knowing you love to drive and can’t-oh I pray for wisdom for your doctor and healing for you. I love you and send prayers and please let me know your progress. I know you are so loved by all-and we would all pray, if you let folks know. Can I help in any way?? Please let me know love Michele

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  4. I always wondered how you developed your loving, appreciative nature, and now I know. You told me with this sentence, “I feel inspired to love this world, the way I have been loved.” What gratitude I feel towards your parents, relatives, and church community who nurtured you with love; they created Michele, who blesses us with her spirit shining through her words.

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    1. I had a beautiful childhood-I grew up with freedom to explore the world and had love coming from every direction–I owe this world something in thanksgiving. Thank you my precious friend-I am so glad we met. love Michele

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