Bit by Bit


[Sign in a plumbing-supply store with a Christmas tree and presents in its front window]


Before Christmas, my husband, grand-daughter and I traded germs ( our two-year-old grand-daughter generously shares an unlimited supply of colds and other ailments from daycare with us) which, filled with Christmas Spirit, I fended off. But those germs finally won—and so I spent yesterday under a thick quilt with Olive Kitteridge. (And Kleenex and cough drops and tall glasses of orange juice.)

This morning, still pretty low-energy, still pretty sick, as I waited for my coffee water to boil I found myself wiping down our utterly filthy kitchen stove. “Ahh, ” I thought, watching myself clean up some of the past week’s spillage we’ve been too busy to attend to, “here’s a tiny bit of my Real Life breaking through my exhaustion,” like the hyacinths and paperwhites in my living room just beginning to reveal themselves. (The bulbs were gifts from a dear friend and a dear daughter.)

Low energy, pretty sick, it’s remarkably easy to think about the past week and to only remember how exhausting Christmas is! All that work! All that family drama! All those delicious holiday treats that left me worn out and debilitated once the sugar-buzz wore off! All that surrounding, worldly tension between Hopeful, Light-Filled, Peace-Loving, Joyful versus Cynical, Violent, Bah Humbug.

How comforting (Get it?) to remember as I lie under that thick quilt that Hope and Light and Peace  and Joy are within me—within all of us—no matter what the season or how we feel. Indeed, like those mysterious and unprepossessing bulbs, these gifts of the Spirit require only something to cling to and a little water:

Last night, as I was sleeping,

I dreamt—marvelous error!

That a spring was breaking out in my heart.

I said: Along which secret aqueduct,

Oh water, are you coming to me,

Water of a new life

That I have never drunk?

                                   [from “Times Alone” by Antonio Machado]




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  1. Water of a new life

    That I have never drunk?

    It is coming to me; there is no averting or diverting it.

    Be whole and well.

  2. Dear Patricia,

    Hi, there, Patricia! I pray, wish, and hope for you and yours a Very Happy Blessed 2015 New Year and for always, my dearest and precious Christian white sisterfriend who you are so, so very much as a superbly super white anti-racist and ally in your magnificent allyship and activism in solidarity!!!!!! I am so, so saddened and sorry to learn that you are so ill, sister!!!!!! I am praying so hard for and thinking so hard for you, and I am praying that you feel better really soon, and I am sending to you positive energy your way, Sister, that you recuperate very quickly and very soon!!!!!!!

    I am so, so very thrilled and overjoyed with how my 2014 came about, Sister!!!!!! I grew so much as a person, as a woman, as a lesbian, as a black person and woman, and, of course, as a Christian in 2014!!!!!!! My remarkable year 2014 went beyond my wildest dreams and went way beyond my expectations of positive and optimistic good for the year, sisterfriend!!!!!!! I thank-you, thank-you, thank-you so, so very profusely, Patricia, for the very gift and blessing you are to me and your splendid and empowering blog post website because you and your spectacular blog have played an immensely and immeasurably key role in why I grew so much in 2014 and why I had such a fantabulous 2014. Your powerful and empowering Christian witness to me and to your other very grateful and appreciative readers, Sisterfriend, and how you are such a loving, caring, and sensitive, true blue white anti-racist and ally as my white sister have all served as my very inspiration to be the best person I can be in all of the variety of areas of my life, Sister!!!!!!! You have been so open to me to being so, so very open on your wondrously wonderful blog post website, as I have shared so openly and honestly about my ardent and dearest, deepest love for white persons, especially for white women, as the lesbian black woman who I am who yearns for always to reach out in racial justice work and racial reconciliation and healing to white persons for all of my life, and who so, so very, very much loves and cherishes white women as the lesbian black woman who I am!!!!!!!! I have found my voice because of your empowering witness in every way, Patricia, and you have been so, so very incredibly kind and open to me being so honest and open about all of the very thoughts, feelings, and issues which are of such prime importance to me as a Christian lesbian black woman who is very liberal and progressive. I have grown because of you, Patricia, and your very fine and excellent blog, and responding to your marvelous blog post articles, to be even more open that I was and to be even more honest and courageous in finding my voice, and I thank-you, thank-you, thank-you for always so, so very profusely for all of this and for you, my dearest and precious Christian white sister who you are so, so very much, Patricia!!!!!!!! Thank-you!!!!!!!!!!

    I, too, rejoice with you, sister, that Hope and Light and Peace and Joy are indeed within me as well!!!!!! I, too, love and cherish Advent and Christmas, and I, too, like you had my share of fatigue from this and trying to get everything done and get all of the celebrating in for Advent and Christmas-I can for sure relate, sister!!!!!!! I love the poem which you contributed by the wonderful poet, Antonio Machado. He is so, so very right-there is for always new water of life for each and every one of us in both the literal and the figurative sense-that each and every one of us as each of our days begin anew can find a clean slate and a new start and a new life full of fresh and new, energized, renewed, rejuvenated, and reinvigorated new beginnings with each brand new day of our lives, and of our glorious new year 2015!!!!!!!! I pray, wish, and hope for you my dearest and precious Christian white sister, Patricia, for your dearest and darling husband and for the rest of your very precious, special, and beloved family, and for the blessedly pure in heart friendsfamily at your stupendous Quaker meeting a Very Happy Blessed 2015 New Year and for all of your days to be so, so very especially blessed!!!!!!! And I for always think of and pray for each and every one of you daily and often in my very most heartfelt, loving, and caring thoughts and prayers, keeping all of you covered in prayers, thoughts, and positive energy, and keeping all of you uplifted to our Dear Spirit!!!!!!! And I thank-you, thank-you, thank-you, all of you, for thinking of me and praying for me for always the way all of you do-I can for sure feel all of the blessedly good prayers and thoughts coming my way from all of you!!!!!! Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you, all of you, for always, straight from my very heart from the very bottom of my very heart from the deepest depths of my very heart!!!!!!!!

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my Christian white sister, Patricia,

    Your Christian lesbian black sister in solidarity For Always, Sherry Gordon

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