It had been a long week of work. My body was exhausted. I canceled the tree removal and lessons for the afternoon so I could rest. There was an African Pop Up Market that I desperately wanted to attend, but only if I was able to get myself together. The long hours of the days had certainly taken a toll on me. My bed engulfed me whole.
Traffic was bad. The weather was not helping. Parking was easy to find. I sauntered up to the 8th floor and there they were. Three lovely ladies from the Motherland; Kenya. These business women create crafts along with others in their group, and they travel here to sell them. I wanted to attend for so many reasons. Women from Africa represent a part of me that speaks to a strong ancestral connection. I imagined that they would have many stories about life to share. An international circle made itself present in my mind. They treated me like family. There was singing, laughter, and lots of fellowship. When I saw the jewelry that they created, and the fabrics that were brought….my creative side took over. I asked if I could take nude pictures with their crafts.
We went into another room so as not to be disturbed by the sole male member that traveled with them. You would think there were little girls playing on the playground. Different necklaces adorned my neck. Pose after pose simply flowed from my smaller frame. Wine and Italian appetizers soon appeared to complete the gathering. My Friday night gave me inspiration for my entire life. My heart was filled with joy and gratitude for the experience that was now a part of my memory.
My push to be social and actually interact with other people has been going quite well this season. For some reason, my busy month has not been busy. However, there have been tons of events where I have been invited as a guest. Yesterday alone found me at two of them. The morning was an annual ladies’ brunch. Each woman is responsible for bringing a dish to a designated home and everyone sits and talks and eats delicious food. My contribution is the entertainment. Why? Gatherings that have entertainment are memorable and have ambiance. Since she has been gracing my family functions with her talent, I called upon a favorite poetess of mine. Red Writing Hood has the unique ability of combining class with hard core reality. When she makes her entrance, no announcement is necessary. Everyone knows that she has arrived.
As she warmed up the audience to her presentation, the guests settled into their seats preparing for the show. There were rounds of applause and several amens. Her words brought the women together, and they embraced her as their own. I had the chance to actually sit down and enjoy conversation with her over a delicious plate. Do you know what it is for two busy people to sit down and just talk in the month of December? The wonderful exchange was completed with group pictures and lots of merriment.
After the brunch, I found myself headed home to rest before my second party of of the day. Work was having a holiday party. No, my shadow has never darkened such a doorway until now. A glass of wine and shrimp made for a surprisingly smashing time. The conversation was light, and the highly anticipated awkwardness simply was not there. Who knew. Two more invitations have arrived for me to attend impromptu celebrations. If my schedule allows, I think that I am going.
As Fall rolled around, I knew that this time of introspection could possibly be chaotic for my newly widowed mother. It would be the first birthday without her husband. The thought of her having a nervous breakdown while I was at work was more than I could take. What could I do to avoid such a fate? Simple. I planned a surprise party.
Once this idea popped in my head, I contacted one of her main associates. She was thinking the same thing and jumped at the chance to be a part of the inside scoop. The amount of text messages that this woman received from me probably caused her to upgrade her cell phone plan. The Surprise Pajama Potluck was well under way with a guest list of 26 women. Cake, furniture, and entertainment were coordinated in between performances and readings. Instead of running to Publix for the common dessert standby, I decided to upgrade to a Cake Couture Specialist. After sending two sketches of what I thought would be a jaw dropper dessert, she created the most beautiful cake that I could imagine. Candles were designed and four shopping trips followed just to make certain that the gift bags were on point: fine chocolate, Sandalwood sachets, and the candles all made their way into the Fall themed gift bags. Tables and chairs were collected from various sources including a party center. Games were gathered as well as balloons, confetti, and orange cutlery.
In the middle of the day of madness, it occurred to me that nothing was going to occur on the actual date of my mother’s birthday. Would there be a feeling of a daily routine? I made my way to a local florist to order flowers for October 22nd. As my mother reveled in her party, she would have a visible reminder of all of the merriment that was made…..and there was merriment running amuck. As the ladies began to arrive at 7pm, my mother was enjoying a pedicure with the decoy. I sent word to her that neighbors wanted to use her yard for a party. When she returned to her own house, she still had no idea that it was filled with friends anxiously awaiting her pleasant shock. The joyous expression on my mother’s face at the sight of everyone gathered in her honor was more than a million dollars. She was caught by pleasant surprise.
The women prayed, danced, ate, sang, and played an intense game of bingo. Testimonials were given and presents were shared. The cake was cut and consumed. The guests left filled with happy memories while others yet stayed behind and created an after party. My mother reported to me that people did not leave until 2am. Well, it was a pajama party after all. One guest was even in town without her knowledge and surprised all of us late in the night with her colorful presence.
Here it is two days after the party, and I have done absolutely nothing besides get a massage and write thank you cards. A cleaning lady is coming to my home tomorrow to take care of its needs while I attend to the matters of the week. One of those matters include the planning of the next party. Now that my mother knows all of our tricks, I have to take it to the next level without alerting her suspicion.
At one point during the evening, I heard a male voice. It was very strange because my brother had informed me that he wasn’t attending the party. I even opened the door to see the face of the voice and no one was there. My ear soon rang which indicated a spiritual presence. I am certain that my father wanted me to know that he was pleased with what I had accomplished on behalf of his wife. I realize that it is my responsibility to do all that I can to make sure that she smiles as she adjusts to him being in the land of the ancestors. Happy Birthday Mommy. Many, Many happy returns.
It is not my practice to do bridal consultations. My schedule is quite busy between performances and spiritual readings, not to mention workshops, classes, and….I like to sleep daily. However, I made an exception for a returning client, and it has left me reconsidering my own policy because of what transpired. It was simply a proud moment for women.
The future mother-in-law made the appointment for herself and the bride to meet with me. When I opened the door, there were four women present. All of them were invited in to grace the nice soft sofa. There was the mother of the bride, the future mother-in-law, the bride, and the aunt. Each woman was excited about the upcoming nuptials and were obviously enjoying the preparations. They were present to support the young bride as she carefully made her musical selections. The smiles, chatter, and insightful questions all made for a delightful time. It was refreshing to see two families coming together to work as one bloodline.
It was rather fitting for me to see the strong female support as one woman moved forward to embrace the love of her life. What a far cry from the mother daughter issues that we so often hear about. I often here about the celebrity wives that have issues with each other and go so far as to attack in bouts of physical emotion. Instead of getting therapy, they splash themselves all over the screen for high ratings at the demand of money grubbing television networks. There should be more displays of the support and love that truly does exist. These feelings were the bottom line in the middle of a business transaction. So, yes I am here rethinking my own policy….
There I was happy as could be because I had purchased two bottles of wine for the gathering. White for me and red for my sister. Upon entering the apartment, I poured her a glass. She politely refused it. I quickly grimaced and retreated to the kitchen. A whole bottle of red wine. Sigh. I poured myself a glass of white and joined the fun. Soon it was time for all of us to engage in girl talk. My sister went first.
She announced that there was a baby in her belly. The other women immediately began hugging her. My shock turned into tears on the spot. I hugged her last and exclaimed, “what a lucky baby”. I have never worried about this baby once because he is in the capable hands of a woman with a very strong spiritual presence with the heart of a true gypsy. She knows herself and marks her territory. Her creativity and international pursuits have all been poured into this one little life that will blossom and grow into someone extradinary.
The funny part is that she had to spend a day or two comforting me. She was the pregnant one. She was the one facing the major life change. It was during this time that I realized how close we really were and that maybe, this event hit a little too close to home. We went and prayed at the beach, danced in the moonlight, and rejoiced in the fact that she was now bringing forth life into the universe. This is yet another example of how the divine feminine returns and manifests itself.