Infertility, Changes in Nature.


 

Long before marriage I knew pregnancy might be difficult for me. I lived with a Chronic Condition called, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polycystic_ovary_syndrome, which often causes infertility. My husband was aware and soon after the wedding, held my hand during medical consultations and accompanied me to doctor’s appointments where together, we decided on our first course of treatment, a low dose fertility drug. Squeezing my hand tightly we were ecstatic to learn a tiny heart might soon beat under my own within about four months.

Upon leaving the doctor’s office it was on to business. Thermometers, temperature charts, and pens and pencils were suddenly prized possessions, placed neatly in the top drawer of a nearby nightstand in order to chart monthly ovulation cycles. Whenever it was time, I telephoned my husband. We followed the ups and downs of my temperature chart to a T! Still, month after month it was not to be.

Eventually, I visited my doctor for another routine consultation. “It’s been nine months,” he said, matter-of-factly. “I can only keep you on this drug for one more cycle. Go home, relax and forget about it.” I left his office in tears. Fertility options were extremely limited back in 1980’s. I could only move on to an extremely powerful fertility drug with lots of potential complications or adoption. My husband and I had discussed adoption but knew it might take years to receive a baby.

That same weekend my husband and I traveled from our cozy bungalow on the west side of Bay City to northern Michigan for business, leaving my temperature chart at home. Our car crested a hill where the blue waters of Grand Traverse Bay https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Traverse_Bay, greeted us in the most beautiful of azure colors as far as our eyes could see. It was late spring, nearing summer. All four of the windows of our car were down. We giggled free as the fresh air blew our hair every which way. Scents of one season were ending while simultaneously, a new one was beginning. Nature was changing. Tall emerald pines danced among splashes of fruit trees on either side of the road with flowers budding into delectable delights of rosy apples and bright red cherries.

While my husband attended business meetings, I relaxed by the pool, read books, and drank sparkling water amid the peace and serenity of new surroundings. Six weeks later I learned I was pregnant. I was about to become a mother. The greatest gift to me.

Yes, nature was changing…..

*photos courtesy of Google Chrome

End of Season


I shall miss my lovely sunflower bed
Thank you for my days of yellow splendour
Where atop red patio bricks
In rocking chair of natural wicker 
Lyrics of trickling fountain melodies
Splashed near petals of dotted chocolate kisses
Oh to breathe in deeply ere out slowly
A sad good-bye forth seasons of Fall and Winter,
Gleeful anticipation to sense God’s hint of Spring
Not long to seek emerald-green in clay of red
Peeking buds bloom finally bursting forth
Gifts of happiness have come yet again
From far above for me to share and love
Until then, sleep well my yellow friends

Spring is Near!


Snow is melting around my home. Grasses, drab in textures and colors of variegated straw have sprouted in fresh cool green. Soft beneath bare feet while tickling beneath ten toes. Gazing at pavers of my red brick patio, clear water trickles ever so slowly toward smooth and speckled pebbles of several dormant fountains. Before long, century old rocks, nubby and gnarled will splish-splash, reaching toward the heavens of a bright blue sky. Together, they will roar fresh melodies, those of a new season for all to hear.

Spring is near!

patio

 

The Writer’s Moon


Last night I opened the door, encouraging Doodle dog to visit the pines before it was time for bed.  Cool, crisp air welcomed me.   So inviting it was, that I stepped onto my patio which was lit from above.  High in a sky of filtered shadows was the moon, round and bright.  Gazing up at this wonder, it shined like a beacon guiding ships through darkened seas during stormy weather.

This time of year I expect the moon to be painted in golden-yellow, the color of spaghetti squash picked while visiting a pumpkin patch.  A harvest moon, if you will.  Yet, last night the moon appeared bright white.  I wanted to reach up to pull it’s invisible chain of beads. On-Off…On…Off.  Like a switch to the bulb over my kitchen stove.  Even behind silken clouds waving in the wind, the moon seemed fluorescent, illuminating all of my surroundings.  A snapshot of what was to be.

Doodle dog and I wandered off to bed.  Wooden blinds were pulled tight, their cords dangling to the right.  Slippers tossed on the floor.  Soon under a quilt fluffing pillows stuffed with feathers.  One or two quills poking through.  It had been a long day and I was ready for sleep to blanket my dreams.

I tossed and turned for hours it seemed.  The moon of white would not let me be.  My bedroom was bathed in moonbeams!  There, to the right, was the source.  Slits and slats between window blinds hung from the wall.  When Doodle dog began to howl, I finally sat up.  Hopped out of bed to trudge down a hallway towards my office space.  There, a keyboard waited patiently atop my desk for fingers to tap letters upon a blank computer screen.  Suddenly words ebbed and flowed.  Like magic.

The moon disappeared without realization.  Morning sun began to rise in the east, not quite ready to show its face above the hill resting behind my home.  A new day began to dawn without a bit of sleep the night before.  Doodle dog followed me back to bed.  Light didn’t seem to matter anymore.  Lids closed over sleepy eyes before I was out.

An invisible chain of beads….Off…On…On…Off.

*photographs courtesy of Google

Hidden Delight


Crinkled leaves beneath my toes

Colors tumbling across the road

Rolling in breezy clusters

Pushed by God to the other side

Crinkled leaves beneath my toes

Wee children chasing to discover

Hidden delight out of sight

Trickling water, listen closely now

Cup your tender ear to hear

Crinkled leaves beneath my toes

Floating atop a stream of pebbled rocks

Hallmark hues glistening in the sun

Children peering to see what may be

Crinkled leaves once beneath my toes

Gently swirling, swaying, smiling up at me

fall road with stream

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*photo courtesy of Google

 

To Witness Imagination


Have you ever witnessed imagination?  Has it ever given you a magical feeling, perhaps a tingling inside or has it ever been so tangible that you could almost touch it?  Please, stay with me for a moment….

I truly did see imagination recently.  No, not in my dreams upon resting my head on a feather pillow in the quiet of the night.  Nor when I was alone, thinking silently to myself what I should begin to write.   The imagination I’m speaking of took place in the out-of-doors where red maple trees grow tall at the base of my little forest land.

The cast of characters played on a stage of thick emerald grass.  They consisted of my husband, our ‘Doodle’ dog, and my precocious grand-daughter of three and a half years.  It’s important now to add the extra ‘half’ at the end of threeYOU understand.  She was staying overnight together with her baby brother who I was feeding in a faded kitchen high chair, patterned in purple nursery rhymes.

Hearing screams of giggles and laughter, I looked out white double doors through panes of glass leading to the patio and beyond.  Doodles was chasing the little one dressed in jeans, her head flopping to and fro in natural curls as she tumbled on the carpet of green.  Grandpa picked her up by rubber heels to swing her back and forth while she shouted with glee.  As I tended to my grandson, helping him spoon vanilla yogurt dribbling from his mouth, he pointed to the window.  “Doo-Doos,” he smiled.  “Doo-Doos outside.”  Just then more shrieks began.  In that moment I gazed at imagination in play.

My grand-daughter was on the left, near a tree dropping golden leaves.  Falling…f.a.l.l.i.n.g. My husband stood a few yards away, clutching an imaginary string before he began to run around the yard, calling her to follow him.  Smiles lit her face from within, pink as cotton candy on a day at the fair.  She chased him around the yard with Doodles running alongside, barking through colored piles of leaves along the way.

Suddenly they stopped at a red maple tree.  It appeared as though the string had gotten caught on a branch.  Together they pulled and tugged, careful not to break such a delicate thing.  Finally, my husband reached high in the sky, above wooden branches and hidden crinkled leaves to untangle what only they could imagine.  Finally free, he handed it to my worried grand-daughter, who waited patiently below the tree.

Relieved, she beamed with joy, kissing her grandpa on a stubbled cheek.  There, he helped her touch the colorful kite, careful not to snap its hidden Popsicle sticks or break the string of white.  Together, they ran across the whole back of the yard, one last time before an open fist let their cherished kite fly free.  Up…up…up it went behind clouds of white into the blue.  As I watched from the warmth of my kitchen, I felt my heart sing from deep within my chest.

Never before did I love my husband more than on that very day.  He inspired our little grand-daughter’s imagination to come alive.  There’s no doubt in my mind that she believed everything about her Grandpa’s fantasy.  She felt it and touched it, played with it and lived each and every special moment within her imagination.

As my nose began to crinkle like it always does before crying with sentimental joy I thanked God for a new blessing.

I witnessed imagination…..!

kites

 

A Splendid Combination of Seasons


This past weekend was a splendid combination of seasons suspended between summer and fall, picture perfect in every way.

Sunday, I packed a backpack with bottles of water together with a few bags of trail mix.  “Let’s go,” I said, tugging at the shirtsleeve of my husband’s arm.  “No more football.  Not today.”  Temperatures hovered around 80 degrees under shimmering sunlit skies of blue.  Clear they were, without a single cloud to block our view.  We were going to take a hike!

Giving in to me, my husband changed into shorts and sneakers while donning his favorite Michigan cap.  Hopping into our convertible, it was a perfect day to ride into the wind.  While driving, we witnessed the changing colors of trees as our hair blew to and fro, flying in the breeze.

Before long we walked on a graveled path, parting limbs to enter one of our favorite Missouri State Parks, Rockwoods Reservation http://mdc.mo.gov/regions/st-louis/rockwoods-reservation.  Our chosen trail was curved and winding, calling for us to step steeply up and down.  Nestled deep within the forest, our hike was truly laden with nature’s beauty.  While walking, we discovered hidden caves, enormous limestone cliffs and wooden bridges crossing over pebbled creeks of dry.

Stopping short and sudden, my husband put a finger to his lips.  “Shhhh,” he whispered, ever so softly.  Directly in front of us, was a tiny creature dressed in flourescent lime.  Still as a statue, the miniature frog clung to a tobacco colored leaf dangling from a branch hanging over our path.

Taking a break, I sat on a moss-covered log, breathing in new scents, fresh and free.  All around me were different sights to see.  Colors had just begun to change.  Leaves of trees lingered to the greens of summer, while others began to brown towards fall or turn red to scatter down the cream of limestone.  Even sounds were unique to me.  A male woodpecker hunted for food from scattered limbs while his female partner beckoned him away.  Trees silently yelled, “Timber,” before toppling to the ground where they formed pieces of a puzzle for woodland creatures to put together at a later date.

After a couple of hours, my husband and I walked out of the forest, feeling all anew.  A little tired, perhaps, but it was one of the most enjoyable days we’ve had in a long time.  There’s nothing like nature to bring out the best in body, mind and spirit.

Summer or fall?  In the end it was a splendid combination of seasons.  Picture perfect in every way. 

Photos Copyright, Kim Gosselin 2015

Falling….


fall flowersThe golden flower of fall has withered

Partly crisp and yellow under the sun

Petals droop

Soon, they will begin to fall

Slipping one-by-one to the somber soil of a new season

Mellow, it’s begun

Warm and wonderful under the sun

Waiting for what is to come

The golden flower now falling….

 

 

 

 

Riverwalk


The whole of the day was spectacular.  Sun sparkled high in the blue of everywhere while a warm breeze lofted through the air, even blowing through my hair.  A splendid sort of day, one where convertibles peeked out of garages for the very first time.  And yet, only a few short moons before a picture postcard of another sort grabbed me by the hand, luring me out to play.

I remember fingers of ten pushing down keys, naturally lifting them up while I sat behind a keyboard of basic black.  Earlier, I woke with a horrible migraine headache, my own Chronic Condition.  I visit a neurologist regularly, keep a ‘headache diary’ and know that prescription medication must be swallowed at the earliest onset in order to keep the pain at bay.  Hoping it will go away.

Hours before, rain had drizzled from the sky of night, dazzling the pavers of our driveway.  Glancing out long narrow windows of the turret in my office library, they glistened and looked brand new.  Mist hovered in the air surrounding them like tiny beads of steam bubbling on a glass door of clear during a hot shower.

As the morning went on, I continued to work while glaring at my computer screen.  Simple sounds of soft keys clicking up and down began to SCREAM at me.  Temples on each side of my head pulsated in unison.  What to do?  My headache was going to be endured regardless.  Literally, I threw caution to the wind.  Tossing on a raincoat, I drove to the nearest walking park near a lovely winding river.  I wanted to take deep breaths, to breathe cool damp air deep into my lungs, hoping my head would not be worse for wear.

The cool squishy ground together with puddles here and there were a gift to me.  The park was mine alone.  It was hushed quiet except for birds hiding in overgrown woods surrounding the grounds.  Grasses were golden damp while trunks of trees were painted green with stripes of lime colored moss.  Venturing toward the nearby river, toes of boots nudged piles of musty leaves, soaked from the rain while squirrels played tag a few steps away.

Around the bend I discovered a dead-end.  Erosion from the river had eaten a two lane road totally away together with most of the trail, making it unsafe for any passers-by. There was nothing to do but turn around.

Upon reaching my car, I shook my head in disbelief.  No more headache.  I  thanked God for this relief from pain.  Taking in one last look around the park, I noticed a Robin strutting close by.  Bright red in breast, he tossed a pink worm.  Up…up…up into the air, fresh from a cocoa colored puddle that lay atop the grass of golden brown.

Never thankful for a migraine headache, everything truly happens for a reason.  Sometimes hidden until later, waiting for the curtain to be parted or a season of newness to begin.

Yes, always a Lesson for me.

Cheers to Fall!


Recently, my family made a day visiting a local “Pumpkin Patch,” strollers and diaper bags in hand.  There, a whole Fall Fairground surrounded us of sorts.  Acres full of hanging fruit trees, big red barns and rows of tall, curled cornstalks colored in cream greeted us everywhere our eyes could see.  Scents of mulled cider wafted through the air together with funnel cakes and caramel corn.   Frolicking fun for everyone!

Under trees of colored leaves, Mommies held sticky hands of toddlers munching on crunchy apples dribbling juice-so-sweet.  Daddies carried bouncing babies on backs of sweatshirts rooting for favorite baseball teams.  And, children in all sizes wearing denim chased an old shaggy dog among rolling acres of an aged family orchard farm.

Together, the five of us took turns cuddling three babes, ages five months to 2 years.  Sitting on splintered wooden boards, we watched infant piglets run races behind straw bales of golden hay.  Faster and faster their mini legs ran.  This little piggy went, “Wee, Wee, Wee.”   Round and Round….who would win?  Wait to see!  A prize for everyone under three!!

Next we went to feed scraggly goats, precious calves and wooly white lambs fenced off in wires of metal grey.  “Look my innocents, watch Grandma now,” I said, holding hands with palms so flat.  Before a flash, a crowd of hungry mouths with teeth so big and wide came to crash!  Nibbled from tentative palms holding crumbled kibble in toasty brown, tongues larger than life lapped faster than quarters could buy.

At the end of the day, grandbabies played in mounds of hay.  Snap!  Magic moments happened within the click of a thumb and forefinger.  Teeny feet jumped in scattered piles oh-so-soft and oh-so-tall.  Giggles from deep could be heard for miles around.  “Poof!”  High into the sky.  Bits and pieces flew everywhere, like confetti on New Year’s Eve!  Arms of pink reached up with itty-bitty hands.  High, higher still.  Floating down, straws of corn-yellow in slow motion.  One…two…three, right by me.

Leaves sparkled in whispering trees.  Golden yellow, burnt orange and sizzling red.  Crisp and curling at edges.  Some falling.  Sunshine warmed faces through breezes from beryl-blue skies above.  Toys were not needed here.  Sippy cups tipped in unison.  Life so good.  Cheers!!  Ahhhhh…..