May Reflections and a Remembrance

May Reflections and a Remembrance

Bachelor Button Flowers with the columbia river gorge behind at sunset


May is my birthday month, and the true onset of Spring--one of my favorite seasons in the Pacific Northwest. I love watching the flowers unfurl one by one in their predictable patterns. The pops of color make my heart soar as they wave back and forth in the wind.

This month was full of connections, with old friends and new, through participating in two exhibitions, working on new collections, spending time with family, and continuing to make ourselves at home in our new locale.

I took my mom to see the local exhibition at Arrowleaf Workshop, followed by a nice lunch at Feast, and for Mother's Day I made a rhubarb cobbler to bring to her for brunch. Getting to celebrate these moments with my mom has been absolutely delightful for us both.

For my birthday, Dave took me out to dinner at 3 Rivers Grill which was fabulous, and then for a peaceful drive up and around Rowena Crest at sunset. We hiked along the trails, took photos, and generally reveled in each others' company.


Sunset at Rowena Crest


A few days later, on May 24, 2023, a dear friend passed away after battling cancer for the past year. Jim was a gruff fellow, with a heart of pure gold. He and my mom were roommates for the past 10 years, and I often described him as "the gay uncle I never had." Jim spent much of his life caring for others--through serving in the Navy, to running his own senior home, to caregiving for people with disabilities, and all of the generosities towards family and friends in between. He had some amazing stories, and I relished hearing them over the years, but especially while accompanying him to various appointments the past year. We laughed endlessly, cracking jokes and venting about various aspects of life, and I just hope he knew how much he was loved and cherished through everything. 


Rowena Crest Wildflowers at Sunset


We wrapped up the month with a birthday celebration for my husband's Grandma Betty who just turned 86. Surrounded by family, we enjoyed delicious food, drinks and laughter, with Grandma even getting pretty silly towards the end. I love hearing her stories and seeing her sense of humor come out at these family gatherings--it is a joy to behold.

Through all of the challenges of this move, and all of the changing emotions, I have held on to our "why," which was to be close to Jim in his last months, and to be closer to family going forward. It still feels very much like we are embarking on uncharted territory, but we are finding our footing. Like my father taught me, "If you can put one foot in front of the other, you will get to your destination."


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1 comment

So many changes that happen at once can often make you feel a little wobbly. Embrace the change! Feel and then try to let the grief go by remembering the good.
Sending you love and hugs

Ali Rider

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