I know that I have written about Lac St Anne before. It is an amazing place with a summer pilgrimage each year to bathe in the healing waters. The pilgrimage has been going on for centuries if not millennia. Where else would you take your father if he were recovering from near death experiences, a couple of surgeries and a foot that refuses to heal?
Dad and I have been here for only two weeks. It has taken time to get him into the lake house and settled. The son-in-laws have been marvelous. Between them they have constructed a ramp in the garage and delivered a hospital bed and his motorized chair and put the hand held shower in place for him to feel at home, safe and at least somewhat independent. The recovery, from my perspective, has been remarkable. For sure he has good days and bad days. But he walks down the hall to his room on his own. He takes a shower on his own. He watches his TV in his room or joins me for a couple of episodes of MASH each evening. There are challenges that come from being out of town but Dad has been out scouting out the neighbourhood in his chair and has spent hours in the sun on the deck, listening to the birds and looking longingly at the lake wondering out loud how we could get a boat. ( Once a sailor …. ) His appetite is his coming back and his colour is good. He can be quite social. He seems to be doing quite well.
There are side effects … good ones for me. I have settled into a routine that involves preparing three meals a day, dressing wounds,sorting and administering medication, gardening (I am learning) and WRITING. The writing has been particularly surprising and may have happened anyway but I really feel that having Dad here with me has helped me settle enough to actually write everyday. It has been a tough couple of years for me and it has often been difficult to focus on what I know needs doing on the projects that I have underway. I think I have moved at least two projects ahead leaps and bounds since Dad first got really sick in early April. I think the page served as a distraction from the reality of his state of well being. I was able to lose myself in the writing if only for an hour or so each day. AND that has made all of the difference. The ideas are not just formulating in my head. They are appearing in my penciled note books and then, with a little help from my daughter, Julia, they appear on the screen and are spewed from the printer to come back to me for penciling in edits and so it goes….
Manuscripts of the Mapping book have been distributed and gathered again. Many thanks to those who took the time to read it and comment. It means a great deal to me to have the feedback. Now I can move forward with a greater degree of confidence to the next step. The next version – Manuscript 2.0 – is percolating and should be available for publishers to read soon. ( mid summer??? she says hopefully) If any of you know a publisher who might be interested in a book about mapping the space between people, please do not hesitate to pass on their information so that we can pester them with Manuscript 2.0 when it is ready. So far the reviews are good from people who know the Enneagram and PULSE and Appreciative Inquiry and from those who do not. There is polishing to do for sure. I am on it.
UVI-PULSE is also moving forward with an ambitious project to put an on line UVI-PULSE “Leadership in Nine Dimensions Program” together. That provides another chance to get creative as I freshen up some of the PULSE programming from a decade ago and breath fresh life into a classic program on how to do leadership in a changing world. Meanwhile I continue to provide webinars on a monthly basis and starting in July there will also be coaching sessions and office hours set up on line for those who are interested in learning more about UVI-PULSE and leading Conversations for Change.
Writing is like putting together the puzzle in the dining room at the lake. We have completed one puzzle in the last couple of weeks and today we started a new one. Today I sorted another 1000 piece box of pieces into piles of colours and starting working on the edges. By ‘we’ I mean my daughters when they are here, my brother who has come on weekends from Calgary, my dear friend Monde who has been sooo helpful with this transition and with many of the other transitions I have been through in our 40 plus years of friendship. Who ever comes in contributes at least one piece to the puzzle. It is the perfect refuge from the strain or tension of everyday life. When your mind is full or overwhelmed you can solve the mystery and create the picture. It is so satisfying to find a piece and place it in to build a more complete picture. There is always a puzzle you can go to to switch gears and allow the brain to move to present action and clear the thoughts and feelings that may have created stress.
Little do the people who stop by know that their presence also contributes to my writing in subtle ways I’m not sure I can articulate. The company that Dad and I get here is important to him and his healing for sure and to me. It has been busy but in a very good way. It has been tough for sure but the opportunity to care for my dad while I also get to do what I love to do has been good for me …. and for him. I would like to thank him for this unforeseen opportunity. I would also like to thank St Anne wherever she is and whatever role she has played in not only healing Dad but in healing me as well. AND to all of you who have sent prayers and good wishes for his recovery, thank you. Whatever happens next I am satisfied that this last three months has been time well spent.
With Love from Love and Love…. Happy Father’s Day this weekend.