Monday, November 2, 2009

Full Hunters Moon

Happy Hunters Moon…Did you know that the names given to the full moon each month date back to Native Americans who lived in what is now the northeastern United States?
The tribes kept track of the seasons by giving distinctive names to each recurring full Moon. Each moon name was applied to the entire month in which it occurred. Though there was some variation among the moon names used by various tribes, in general, the same ones were used by the Algonquin tribes whose territory stretched from New England to Lake Superior. When the European settlers arrived, they adopted the custom, and also created some of their own names. Since a lunar month is only 29 days long, on the average, the full Moon dates shift from year to year.
November's traditional full moon name is the Full Hunter's Moon because the Harvest Moon came late (October rather than September), so when this happens, November's moon becomes the hunter's moon. (It is usually the beaver moon because traps are set at this time of year)

I find this so interesting and for some of you it may be the only thing that you will like from my monthly ramblings!

And speaking of which… I drove to school today and tried and tried to get a feeling for what I was going to write tonight…I had several ideas but nothing hit me and I was worried that for the first time I would sit at the computer and nothing would be there!!! I like to think that John inspires makes my life easier to pretend he is still with me…so I was thinking today .. “Geeze, John, what the heck??? Don’t you know I still need you???

Well, I get to school and have a meeting with some parents I don’t know and the Mom starts talking about how her son from a first marriage is in jail and her daughter (who was the student we were talking about) misses him so much and doesn’t understand why he takes drugs and gets himself into trouble! We talked about the fact it is a sickness and people don’t always understand that…yada yada yada.. When the meeting was over she came over to me and thanked me! She said most people don’t understand (including her husband) but she said …he is still my son!! I told her never to be ashamed to be his mom…and told her “at least he is still here, and as long as you have him there is always hope!” I told her things could always be worse…she could be me! (and of course, told her about John) I think it did make her feel better…and I like it when his death could at least be used for some good…he would like it too..of that I am certain.( I found out later that the mother and father are in a rock and roll band…so I guess John was telling me not to worry, he is still here for me!)

It is John’s birthday this month and I have to say I am no closer to healing than I was when he died…I miss him more if that is possible…I am slowly beginning to realize that I am just never, ever, going to be really, truly, happy again…and it is a lot of work to get up every day and pretend otherwise. But that is my job now..and believe me … it is a job!
So, for his birthday…I would like to ask you to try to think of everyone you meet as having a story…and be understanding…because you never know what others are carting around for baggage…be thankful for what you have…it could ALWAYS be worse!!


Anonymous said...

Dear Paula,
Never worry that your monthly words will be lacking as evidenced by John's inspiration today. Thank you for remindng us all to be grateful every day for what we have and to reach out to everyone we meet; if only in a small way.
My Dad used to often quote the phrase "I complained because I had no shoes until I met the man who had no feet"

Wrapping you in a hug and celebrating another "Johnny Pike Moon"
Love, AWB

Elizabeth said...

I have been anxiously awaiting this month's post, I always love reading them and was especially excited this month because the full moon fell so close to Halloween and the Halloween weekend was so amazing! I found myself telling everyone I wished I was in fourth grade again so I could go trick or treating and take full advantage of the beautiful weather, the tornados of autumn leaves and moonbeams that stretch for miles. This time of year reminds me of John not just because his birthday is coming up, but because the fall always reminds me of my childhood and I can't think of my childhood without thinking about Johnny. And he always embraced the spirit of Halloween, I think he would have had a blast this past weekend, and I would have with him. Before we lost John, I used to see news prgrams of shows where people lost a loved one and they say, "Not a day goes by when I don't think of ..." I thought it couldn't be true. Everyday? But it is. It is so true. And it doesn't even surprise me any more. It does surprise me that sometimes I feel like all the healing I've done and the progress I've made in the past two years will never make a dent in my mourning or grief. It really does become a job to be able to put on a strong front and do your real job and fulfill your real responsibilities when all you can think of is a sadness that can swallow you whole if you let it. It does us all well to see the happiness your family has to focus on and that you can keep John alive through these blogs and the memory of his character. You are an inspiration to us all and your strength has given strength to others and has given us something positive to focus on. I find myself doing things that I would never make an effort in if it weren't for Johnny's memory, if I weren't trying to do him proud. It is ironic, but in his passing I feel more determined to do well in my life and make it worth while. Because maybe it will make up for the life that was lost and all the good that would have come from it. I see little bits of him in all of you, and that keeps my heart warm, just like these messages you write every month. I carry him with me everyday and each month you give me another piece to hold on to. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Dear Paula,
I love your blog. You know I didn't know John and have only just met you but I can feel this is such a wonderful way to celebrate John. You are amazing and brave to get up everyday and do the work you do. I am happy to have the opportunity to have met you and heard John's story, I think of you often as I parent my Reilly.

nina keneally said...

Thank you, Paula. For your honesty and indefatigable spirit. I have to believe that there is some reason for life and the unexplainable and unknown challenges that life and love throw at us. Yes, there is pain - often without end - but there is what we do (or don't do) with it and in the space in-between we find connection and sustenance.
I don't think you know that I left my first career in theater to become a substance abuse counselor. Another story. And Syracuse and pavers and, most of all, John, have brought us interaction.
You are now eternally in my pagan prayers.
Nina K.