Walking is amazing. It does so much more than strengthen the body; it feeds the soul. As Mark and I were walking down the hill, our neighbor saw us as she was driving by. She stopped and turned off her car so we could chat for a few minutes. The dark of winter has kept us all inside and unconnected. It was nice to be out and available to the opportunity to catch up with her.
Then I ran into a my friend’s daughter. I heard her mom was in the hospital yesterday, waiting to have her baby. Her daughter broke the exciting news that her baby sister had arrived – and that all were well and healthy. I came back home and emailed a group of friends, who were all waiting, with the news.
I live in a great neighborhood. When I first moved here 7 years ago I was a little unsettled by how nice everyone was. I felt like I should wear pearls all the time; I felt like I had walked onto the set of Leave It To Beaver. But this has become my ‘normal’ now and I am so grateful to be a part of a community that wants community. We all do our part, beginning with friendly hellos and often deepening into much more.
Bellingham is my Soul town. My accident happened just 6 miles south of here in the Chuckanut mountains. This is the town the hospital rushed me to. Nine months later I started college here at Western Washington University. Alone for the first time, getting my adult feet wet, I established my patterns in dealing with my amputation. Some good, some not so good. When we returned seven years ago, it was 25 years after the accident. I felt like I was given the chance to change some of the patterns that weren’t serving anymore. I had a new leg made when I first moved here; I started writing, and, knowing I was done bearing children, I knew I was in that next phase of my physical life: life after giving birth. Bellingham has given me ample opportunity to re-birth myself into the person I’ve always wanted to become. My gestation period is just a little longer than I expected.
And that’s OK.