Blessings on the Wind

imageWhen I was in Florida last week, my sister-in-law and my niece and I gathered shells on the beach.  The ones we picked were little scallop shells that sea mollusks had piecered a little hole at the top. My niece and I intended to make wind chimes with them by stringing them together with fishing line. Yesterday, I sat out on the patio and did just that.

It was a miserably hot and humid day, the kind that takes your breath away once you step out of the air conditioning. I sat under the umbrella, listened to soft music, and strung my little shells. The solitary activity gave me time to think, and my thinking usually wanders into the realm of “I wish…” I wish we lived closer to the kids, I wish we had enough money so we could hop on a plane anytime we wanted to see family and friends, I wish we could win the lottery so we could pay off all our children’s school loans, I wish, I wish, I wish…

As I was about to enter that realm once again, I looked up and read my little garden sign I had just purchased the week before. It said, “Today I planted gratitude, and grace began to grow.” I laughed at myself, and instead of thinking about the things I didn’t have, I thought about the things I did have, and each thought was a blessing. With each shell I strung, I thought of something else I was thankful for. Though we don’t live as close to the children as I would like, we live so much closer than we used to and can see them more. I now live close to my brother and his family and get to enjoy his first grandchild. I live near the ocean once again, something I longed for all the years I was away from it. And the list went on and on.

This week the husband of one of my dear friends died, quite suddenly and unexpectedly, in the midst of an outing with friends and family. It made me aware in a real way that we really do not know what is going on in our bodies, and the first symptom that something is wrong could be the one that kills us. It reminded my husband and me that we need to treasure every moment together because we don’t know how many of those moments we have left. Our relationship is one of the sweetest blessings we have.

imageI did not have quite enough shells to make a real wind chime. I will need another trip to Florida for that. But my strings of shells do dance in the wind, so the visual is just as good as the aural would have been. Now, whenever I wander in my garden or see the garden from my kitchen table, I will see my cascade of shells and remember all my many blessings.

Today would have been my sister Karen’s 57th birthday. This post is for you, Karen. Your memory is a blessing.

About Coming East

I am a writer, wife, mother, and grandmother who thinks you're never too old until you're dead. My inspiration is Grandma Moses who became a successful artist in her late 70's. If I don't do something pretty soon, though, I'll have to find someone older for inspiration.
This entry was posted in Favorite posts, Just Blogging, Seashells for Karen and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to Blessings on the Wind

  1. As I began to read this post, I thought of your sister. I know how hard this must be for you and my thoughts are with you. This post is beautiful, very heart warming and it spoke to me so much. Thank you for your words, your encouragement and the admonition to count our blessings daily. Thanks, DAF

  2. Robin says:

    Beautiful post, Susan. Just beautiful. 🙂

  3. pegoleg says:

    Thank you for this lovely reminder to appreciate all that we are given. It is making me cry, but not in a totally bad way.

    This week it has been 15 years since my brother passed – he would have just turned 50. I think he and Karen are looking down on us in love.

    • Coming East says:

      Your brother was so young when he died, Peg. So sorry for you and your family to have gone through that. Just got back from a great vacation with my sweet little family, and I appreciated every minute of being with them.

  4. You are surely lucky to have the wonderful family that you do. Of course you wish you could see them ALL more, but you are fortunate indeed that they love you and miss you too. You KNOW I want to be adopted by your family :o) hahahaha!.

    If my sister were alive, she would be 63. And she has been gone, 44 years 😦

    Blessings to you. Loving thoughts of Karen and the shells ❤

    • Coming East says:

      So sorry to hear you lost your sister at such a young age, Kathleen. I know I am blessed to have the family I have. If they weren’t so wonderful, maybe I wouldn’t miss them so much! Love your comment about wanting to be adopted by us.

  5. ARK says:

    Really loved each and every word in your post and took 5 deep breaths amidst my busy schedule just to inhale some peace. Thanks “Coming East” for bringing such a beautiful moment of peace on my busy day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love you!!!!!!!!

  6. pattisj says:

    The shells do add a nice touch; I like your new sign in the header. Perfect!

  7. Amy says:

    Thank you for the beautiful post, Susan!

  8. Jiawei says:

    Love your shells, Susan. We all have the “glass half empty” moments sometimes. Thanks for the reminder. Beautiful post!

  9. Something tells me Karen may have given you a nudge to recognize that sign. Thanks so much for nudging all of us with this post. By the way, those shells are beautiful!

  10. Huffygirl says:

    Thanks for reminding me to be grateful too Susan. Beautiful thoughts.

  11. Very poignant post. Thanks for sharing. Love the shells!

  12. Thank you for the reminder – always good to have reinforcement.

  13. Dianna says:

    So many wonderful thoughts in your post today…. I feel as though my relationship with my husband is a true blessing too. I’m glad your little wind chime reminded you (and will continue to remind you) of all your blessings.
    We do need to cherish each moment…!

  14. Adela says:

    You have so much. Blessed are you.

  15. This post was just what I needed to read today! I too have been lining up all my “I wishes” and feeling sorry for myself. My wishes are very similar to yours and I find that sometimes dwelling on all of those thoughts tends to make me start to worry. Then I jump on the anxiety train! Your post reminded me that each day is a gift and there is so much to be thankful for in this life. Thank you for your beautiful and thoughtful words! May you find many sweet moments of blessings as you remember your sister today.

    • Coming East says:

      Mama, your post made me so happy! I’m just like you. I hop on the anxiety train on a daily basis, and I’m trying so hard to stay away from the station. I love my little garden sign and the shells because maybe they will help me take different trips instead.

  16. winsomebella says:

    I think Karen is smiling, watching your grace.

  17. Angeline M says:

    A truly wonderful way to start my day.

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