Morning Sounds


Barb sitting excitedly on a jet engine display in an airport.
Nature ushers in the new day with a symphony of sounds. Like a new day, new beginnings come whether we want them to or not. Jet Engine Barb (as I call myself here) had no idea what awaited just hours away.

I hear the birds sing long before it is light. The open windows giving me a front row seat to the sounds of morning. I don’t camp much but one thing I love about sleeping outside is being surrounded by the sounds of nature. The world goes on regardless of our presence in it. As much as we change and damage it, the world reclaims itself in amazing ways.

It is June now and I can pull myself back together a bit from the perils that the month of May now brings. It was May 1st that Molly went to the hospital in an ambulance and never came home. It was May 7th, we unplugged her, May 11th, we buried her and May 23rd, we celebrated her. Time does its soothing and May is much more manageable now in 2022 than it has been the last 7 times, but it remains the month that my life blew up. Roy took a picture of me in the airport on the way home from Amsterdam. It is a jet wing engine and I am sitting in it smiling. I was so excited to be going home. I missed Molly and Gracie and knew that big things had to happen for what I thought my life was going to be. Before he erased all existence of me from his social media in order to find my replacement, Roy captioned it beautifully on his page. Something to the effect of “The last happy picture of Barb before her world came crashing down”. I look at it sometimes. To me it represents the blissful ignorance that April 30th had that year. Sitting there clueless to the fact that Molly would be dead in less than 48 hours.

I was asked during the filming of the Montefiore Hospital commercial in Utah to use the sunrise as an analogy for my return to “being ok” after Molly, and the brain tumors and the arrival of Jack. I was a bit taken aback. In the days and weeks after Molly left the sounds of morning would come to me through the open windows as I slept on the floor next to Gracie. They enraged me. It was nature’s perfectly beautiful way of reminding me that Molly was gone and that I was expected to live another day in this perilous reality.

For the most part this is better now. I remember when these sounds reminded me of living in Boston and staying up all night writing a term paper or thesis. I remember these sounds in the months after Gracie and Molly were born and I was nursing them and snuggling them. In the years following 2016 and the many losses there I remember these noises coming as I completed a long middle of the night drive or wrapped up a long night of drug use. Knowing I had to now straighten up and carry on the business of surviving. So many connections to nature here and the earth’s way of ushering us into another day.

I have learned to remove (or temper) my connections to things since 2018. I stopped using drugs and medications then and began a spiritual mentoring journey. What resonates here now as I sit on the porch in the early morning hours creating a morning routine is the notion that things only have the power, or meaning, or connection we give them.  In an early lesson in A Course in Miracles, this was also an offensive thought to me at first as “things” were all I had left of Molly in any tangible way. I have grown here as well and can breathe in the meaning I assign to a pair of socks. I can remember Molly wearing them and then give them to someone who might need them. Like accepting the sunrise, this is a slow process.

May is doing what everything does in the grieving process, it is morphing and changing into something other than the stark reminder that Molly left us. She is never coming back and all I can do now is use all of my experiences to somehow find and share meaning in these events. In my re-found desire to “be ok” waking up early and participating in the noises, light, and energy of Earth’s transition to daylight seems an appropriate tiny step for me.  So, good morning June, it is good to see you!

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