Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Remembering 2008

December 2008
Digital Collage: Photoshop 5.5, my photos

In preparation for putting 2008 to bed, I'd like to document what an up and down year it's been for us here: One funeral, two babies, and a wedding.
  • January
    The year started off terribly. My brother Casey's son, J.D., just 18, was killed riding a bicycle. January 19th, my Grandson Carson was born. His middle name, Cecil, is after my dad. In January, and throughout the whole year, my best friend Donna and I make day trips around West Texas to take pictures.

  • February
    February 18th, I celebrated one year of Photo A Day. I started being aware that I was experiencing more than just "the blues." For the first time in my life, my brain succumbed to clinical depression.

  • March
    My mother came to take care of me. She got me to the doctor and on meds. She took very good care of me. Let me talk when I wanted to talk. Didn't force me to talk when I didn't want to, which was most of the time. She did, though, nudge me daily to get outside in the sun. We slowly pulled the weeds out of my old garden.

  • April
    My brother Casey was working on a car and the jack gave way, falling on him and trapping him underneath for an hour. He had three broken ribs and a crushed pelvis. After eight days in the hospital, I picked him up in New Mexico. He has lived with me since. They say everything happens for a reason.

  • May
    Uneventful, but important gentle healings going on here at my homestead. We discover Casey has quite the eye for photography too. We are now a day trippin', photo snappin' Trio.

  • June
    My meds are now working. Casey returns to work 'part time' -- working 10 hours the first day. He continues the year working too many hours, but I'm his banker and am socking away his money for his future. All around there are trantulas galore!

  • July
    July 10th my brother's first grandbaby is born to his daughter. Despite her young age, McKayla makes a great mom. (And Saige makes a great baby.) I discover in a dry creek bed nearby these fabulous things called hemotite concretitions which are these crazy round rocks that look like they are from the moon -- a new thing to look for on our day trips.

  • August
    Hot as blue blazes, still the Trio takes a weekend camping trip on the Colorado River. I'll never forget the sound a blue heron made as it was coming up the river and discovered us. August 30th my youngest daughter marries. All the family was here. It makes me cry now just thinking how beautiful the wedding was. Audrey was stunning.

  • September
    I felt like I was beginning to get my groove back. I don't remember ever enjoying so many wildflowers so deeply before. Donna starts coming to Odessa for whole weekends. We meet the famous naturalist Burr Williams in person when I deliver to him the petrified weasel I had found. (I half-heartedly considered mailing it to my cheating ex-boyfriend as a birthday gift -- a weasel for a weasel -- but Burr wanted it more.)

  • October
    More groovin'. Fall came so gently, giving Donna and me plenty of time to take photos. Donna is our "Susie homemaker" when she's here, cooking for us, doing Casey's work clothes laundry, and just generally being at home.

  • November
    More day trips, including finding the old Upland County Courthouse. Thanksgiving in Lubbock with Donna and her mom at Furr's Cafeteria. No week spent cooking. And even better, no dishes.

  • December
    I can't get into the Christmas spirit, but I did begin thinking sincerely about what I want to do for 2009. I put forth an idea that I'll tell you about later as the year progresses. I buy a storage shed, at long last! It's delivered and set in place by a crane. I'm spending the last week of the year boxing things neatly, labeling them, and storing them there, making room for a clean start. Not so different than what I'm doing with this post right now.


jomamma said...

I feel so enlightened now... thanks, hope 2009 is a good year for you and yours. Yes, I too believe that everything happens for a reason, and if we wait patiently, it's usually for the good.

Godinla said...

What a year! That photo is haunting and beautiful. Haunting things are generally beautiful to me but that one's extra good.

'09 is gonna be something thanks to you.

Bobbie said...

I am so impressed by your image. I feel that it is the little girl "you" looking past the (almost) old year. The images of the persimmons? are a bright hope.

I love this chronology of the
year, I'd forgotten some of those things. You have developed good habits keeping your journal faithfully all these years.

Virginia said...

First my thanks to Janet K for sending me your way. I am an older fart than you my dear and yes, I do or say anything I damn well please...most of the time. Your blog is just wonderful and I thank you for sharing your world with us. Oh and did I mention your photographs? I am in awe. I will be back often to see what lovely images and food for thought you have laid out for us. Merci beaucoup,

Kris Cahill said...

Wow, thank you for sharing your year. It was an incredible one, and a true testament to your strength that you are able to tell us. Your work has only gotten more soulful and beautiful.

I am reminded of something one of my teachers used to say: you become more compassionate with others because you have been there yourself. You become a better healer because you know what it's like to be the one in pain. And you are able to see clearly without judgment because you have experienced the same thing yourself.

Looks to me like you are deciding that things are looking up from here on in!

Frances said...

Hoping 2009 is fully in the groove for you, all the way gal. No half measures and just full-on happiness.
You deserve it.
love and hugs

D.C. Confidential said...

Beautiful post, Debi. You have, indeed, had a momentous year. The depth and breadth you have acquired in the midst of joy and pain is a beauty (and a privilege) to behold.

Here's to new beginnings and big dreams in 2009!

chosha said...

I must have started reading your blog a little later in the year. I had no idea that you and your family had dealt with so many hard things last year. I hope 2009 is kinder to you - sure, all experience deepens us, but constant challenges are just too wearying to the soul. Having said that, you also had some wonderful moments - Paige, and also the wedding.

The image is really interesting and beautiful. I've collected and pressed little red leaves like that in the past. Seeing them brought back the memory of the holiday in Victoria when I found them. :)

John said...

A remarkably open post, like your exceptional photographs... I like your texan quilts mucho. here the yellow is soothing like butter but a warning too before a red light....Mas, por favor.

A big hug from your biggest NY fan, ring.on the new year.