April 13, 2009

Day 3 Pulpit Rock- They wrote in it!!! But first my friend Dana.

I went up to Pulpit Rock today with a dear friend. Our kids are best friends from way back. She and her girls just moved here. She has always been an inspiration to me and is one of the toughest womyn I have ever met. Most of the time I have known her she has lived without running water and other modern day “necessities”. She recently returned from Central America where she travelled by local bus with her two young children for 3 months, with very little cash and all their belongings on her back. She is a farmer, I have seen her work harder and more efficiently in a morning than I have in a week. She is sensitive and loving, all with a self admitted hard and crusty crab shell. She is feisty, sometimes to the point where I get scared of her passion (which can be seriously angry passion), but I know that despite any quarrel we might have, (which is rare) she would give me the shirt off her back, even though she needs it more than I. I love her. Today while we walked she told me something that made me ponder what it means to be strong. She told me *I* was the strongest womyn SHE had ever met. Said that what I had been through in my life amazed, and inspired her. That it was done with grace (Or maybe I added that part). There are so many different ways of expressing strength. I may not have toiled and struggled in the same ways Dana has, but she reminded me today that I have struggled and toiled in my very own distinct ways. And my secret? Well I have always been a “silver lining”, “everything happens for a reason“, ”I am given what I can handle“, ”this too shall pass“, kind of gal. I am proud of us both.

So, so, so...I was excited when I reached the top, on yet another drizzly cold day, to look in the journal I had left. At first I couldn’t find it, then I looked over the first ledge and there it was. I opened it and was delighted to find a BUNCH of people had written in it! The journal said:

”Tell me about someone, something, anything that you love“

Many children responded.

”My sister Piper and my sister Sadie, they are both so cute. I love chocolate!“

”I love all my friends and family, and my dog and cat“

”I love my fish, I love my old fish. i love the whole world. Most of all i love my family“

Made my heart sing and my eyes tear. One boy even wrote a story called The Smallest Frog, who was bullied but overcame adversity by using the skills he had learned from being the smallest ”ex-tadpole“. The adult entries included (an assumption based purely on hand writing)

”I love hockey!“

”I love my town“

”I love the clean air and a chance to dream. I love my husband and my daughter, who give me smiles everyday“

”I love life! What’s not to love. Life is what you make it. It is not about the situation you are put in but how you act and react to those situations. If you choose to love you will!“

So very very true. The following was the first entry in the journal, it read;

”My adult daughter who won’t speak to her dad. She has an eating disorder and it disrupts her whole life“

I choose to believe that being able to put this into words, at an unexpected moment, brought this womyn strength, or solace, or something else I cannot put a name to. I believe it helped her in some way. I wanted to invite people to talk about loss and grief, the necessary shadow side of love that make the light so very sweet. This inspired me to ask:

”Tell me about something in your life that you have lost that still pulls at your heart“

I can’t wait to go up again tomorrow and find out.


  1. I love the kid who loves the whole world. I love the adult daughter who won't talk to her father who has an eating disorder. I love you, Bernice, for putting this experiment in motion, and putting this all out there for everyone else.

    I love Evan's belly giggles and infectious, mischievous grin, as well as the profound joy he expresses over breasts (my lovely little nursling! LOL). I love Mira's depth and profundity, her old-soulishness, her deep care and concern for other human beings. I love my commitment to my own healing and joy and the process it has taken and will take.

    I would also love it if you would post The Smallest Frog for me to read.

    Thank you again for this. Namaste.

  2. Yes I know I wouldn't comment on the comments and yet here I am! LOL I WILL post "the smallest frog" when the journal returns. I will scan and post every journal that returns so you all can read them. I don't know how, but I will make it happen.