Thursday, March 26, 2015

Here Comes the Sun

Good Morning Sunshine (The sun is shining over Rae's shoulder)
Every summer I travel to New Mexico to attend a board meeting for Cuyamungue Institute.  I also sometimes teach a workshop.  This year our board meeting is in May, and I will be attending a wedding on one of the days of the meeting. It would be easier for me to skip the board meeting this years as I will miss most of it.  But I must go. The Land calls me.

Our meetings are usually two to three days...with enough free time to spend time in Santa  Fe or surrounding areas.  The land at Cuyamungue is some of the most beautiful on earth and I treasure the time I get to spend there. 

I am walking to the ridge.
One of our traditions is to walk to the ridge, one of the highest points, and greet the sun.  We all face east waiting for the sun to rise above the Sangre de Cristo Mountains .  Someone will say a morning verse.  My favorite is this.

Those in and around the mountains,
Those in and around the hills, 
Those in and around the earth:
Your gifts and blessings,
this day,
we return to you.

After greeting the sun we give hugs to everyone and then someone will break out in song...anything from "Morning Has Broken" to "This Little Light of Mine" to "You Are My Sunshine", and my favorite, "Here Comes the Sun"...anything that has the word 'sun' in it.   What a perfect way to begin the day.

The sun is rising.

The main reason I must go to Cuyamungue is to complete the circle of my friend, Rae's life. I know this is more for me than for her...but I need to do this.  I need to walk to the top of the ridge, open my arms, breath in the clean crisp morning air, and release my grief.  My friend, Stephanie, will join me.  She, Rae and I conducted many workshops at the Institute and our bond was and still is strong.

Stephanie, Rae and I at one of our workshops

In this collage, each one of us communicated to each of the other participants in our own way.  Stephanie was song, I am not sure if Rae's was a hug or if it was Duane's, mine was silence through the eyes.  In the one picture we have Rae in the center receiving healing and loving energy from us.

 I don't know how the grief will be expressed...tears, sobs, wails?  Will I shout out my grief or will it come out in song?  And after the grief...what?  Will releasing it be enough?  Will I hear that deep, hearty laugh of Rae's, echoing  through the wind?

I won't know until I go...until I am on the ridge...releasing my grief and feeling Rae's spirit riding the wind.  Riding the wind, free from pain, free from stress, and full of love for all of those she touched.

(...and aside....As I was typing this, tears in my fingers began to type this....'come down from the ridge and play $10 on the slots at Cities of Gold, and $10 at The Rock, and then $10 at Buffalo, love and this for me...) 

Thank you, Rae, my friend, I will follow your wise words.



  1. I can't imagine how difficult this will be for you. But, you will be surrounded by nature's beauty. You will have the love and energy of all there. And yes, Rae will be there, too. I don't think she would miss it.

    I have never been to this part of the country. The pictures are lovely. What a beautiful way to greet the day.

  2. How magical Cuyamungue Institute is and what a blessing to have been able to experience it while Rae was still with us!
    Thank you for your love Jackie and for finding a way to keep all of these memories alive!

  3. What a beautiful tribute to an obviously loved friend. May we all have friends who love us so much. Have a peaceful trip.