Posted - 05/14/2009 03:00pm
7 Comments | Add Comment

May 2009

Monterey, California

You always brought the magic world with you.  From the time you were a little girl you brought your magic world to us.  Living your fantasy life meant you never came for a visit empty-handed. You brought your fantasies and offered them as presents. Imagination travelled with you and never left your side.  It was easy to see the stars in the heavens when I was with you.  I believed in them too, because of you.  I was then, as I am now, calmed by your presence.

I hear my mother say these words to me as she teeters between life and death.  We are in hospital together.  I lean towards her so that I may hear her speak these words.  And when she is done speaking, I find myself done in.  I lean away from her and close my eyes to let the words reverberate in the chambers of my heart. 

There is no greater gift than a mother's blessing, is there?  If there is, I cannot imagine what it might be.  I am grateful that her blessing came at this late hour and wasn't left only to my imagination, this time....

Hers is a long goodbye.  Unlike the language of Twitter, my mother's utterances are words that form sentences connecting one thought to the next in a way that doesn't trigger an adrenaline rush as a response.  Unlike the premise of Twitter, her communication assumes there may not be the opportunity to respond immediately, if at all.  Sometimes it takes her a goodly amount of time to put soul language to words.  I am my mother's daughter in this way, too.

I find myself languishing with her as we wait and watch, listen and speak. Time passes willy-nilly, yet I know there is no time like the present.  There is nothing more important than this time with her.  This time that matters.

I have nothing better to do.  Nothing at all, really.  No place to go, or be, than with her when she needs me.  I'm not just passing by.  This is my stop for as long as I can stay.  I'll take every minute and bathe my sadness in my mother's blessing.

Years ago I read the novel One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel García Márquez.  I now know why it is my favourite work of literature.  When the wind blew through the village of Macondo and changed the lives of the Buendía family forever, it was magical realism that bound them all together in timelessness.  Even in the face of mortality, when the wind died down. 

It is the magic, the majesty and the mystery of my spirit and all spirits, that I believe in.  A holy woman once said this to me:  "There aren't a multitude of paths, there is only the one, the path of the spirit, or as you may call it, the spiritual path.  And we are all on it.  It isn't that there is this path or that, Anya:  remember this, only the one."

Just like in One Hundred Years of Solitude, the wind blew in to my village and is now changing everything for the Ushakova family, forever.  The wind hasn't subsided yet for us.  We are still in the eye of the storm.  And just like for the Buendía family, it is a belief in the magic, the majesty and the mystery as experienced in magical realism that will keep us together in timelessness...particularly in the face of the matriarch's mortality. 

(Magical realism:  is an artistic genre in which magical elements or illogical scenarios appear in an otherwise realistic or even "normal" setting.  It has been widely used in relation to literature, art, and film.)

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Comment posted by Rob Chimsky on 05/29/2009


The combination of this writing with In the Still of the Night presents a fascinating journey of emotion. I have been fortunate enough to not have lost either of my parents....yet. It is a thought that comes to me in unexpected moments and causes me to quickly engage myself in some other...any other...dialog. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on something that is often so hard to express.  rob

Comment posted by K. Faulkner formerly known as K Mac...! on 05/29/2009

Love you ol' spiritual one...ready to have my literary colonic...xoo K

Comment posted by Barbara Walkowski on 05/29/2009

Dear Anya, yes, there is magic in the passages you write about your mother.  And although you are feeling much sadness now, I can also sense the peace you must feel being exactly where your spirit wants you to be. Looking forward to Saturday.

xoxo, Barbara

See you tomorrow morning!

(note:  reference to "Navigating The Four Rivers Of Life" Retreat Writing Workshop on 05/30/09)

Comment posted by Ginny Krieger on 05/29/2009

Anya: Brief note to check in ---- see you Sat. morning .... I need a boost xo ginny

(note:  reference to "Navigating The Four Rivers Of Life" Retreat Writing Workshop on 05/30/09)

Comment posted by nancy chimsky on 05/29/2009

dear anya,

your most recent may 14th writing touched me very deeply.  what a beautiful 'magic world' you shared in expressing the love and appreciation between you and your mother. thank you. xox, nancy

Comment posted by Jane Z. on 05/30/2009

Hi Anya,

It's getting late on Friday night. This is my first visit to the BlogFrog, your atelier and I'm absorbing your beautiful, poetic style of writing. I'm touched by your mother's words to you. My mother was unable to say much at the end of her life, but she let me know how special I was to her. She would say in the last months of her life, "I'm so glad to see you, or you look wonderful, or how are you, darling?" I would be stupefied because she never expressed affection or showed much interest in me. I was deeply saddened by her death and also very grateful that she was finally able to let me know that she loved me. I was never sure.

Comment posted by Michael Crain on 05/30/2009

Hello baby, 

After being together for our 25 years, and being present when those precious words were spoken to you by your mother, I really couldn't have imagined your capturing of the lightning of that moment with your words. You still amaze me.... and I know what that meant to you. When we spoke earlier tonight, I referred to the short story "A River Runs Through It" by Norman Maclean where at the end he writes "It is those who we live with and love and should know who elude us." Yes that is it, isn't it?  You are my grand mystery.  With my love,