Thursday, September 14, 2017

Jane Goodall made me smile

I have been feeling blue lately.  Not all the time, but some of the time.  Missing my kids.  Missing my mother.  Missing my in-laws.  Thinking about mortality.

I have headaches almost all the time.  My back hurts.  I overdid at the gym and now my knees hurt.   And there's age. 

I am overweight and out of shape.  That I do know.  And, that's something I can do something about.  But my mortality, not so much.  Yeah I know, being healthier will help me live a longer and more fulfilling life.  I do know that.

As I wrote in my blog last time, I marvel at the babies in my life as they are learning to walk.  Starting kindergarten.   I am sure some have even started families of their own.   

I sit here in disbelief thinking about this house.  This home.  And the activity that used to live here.  Nursing babies and toddlers.  Potty training.  Running to the hospital for stitches or broken bones.   Seeing them take their first step and them seeing them walk away into their own lives.   Adults

It is amazing how independent they all are.  They don't "need" me in the ways they did for what seemed like forever.  What was really such a short blip in the universe of time.

I seem to have been a mother all of my life.  In fact I haven't.  But it is my identity.   And I used to be one of the moms.    Now I am a mentor rather than a compatriot.   I get calls for help and advice instead of invitations to the playground.  

And so, tonight, as I was watching late night TV, Jane Goodall came on. I knew she was coming on- that's what I was waiting for.   She spoke so calmly and so wisely.  She is an amazing woman.   And brilliant.  And I often think of how lucky I am to be alive at the same time as her.

I have seen her in person on more than one occasion.  In the 70's when I was a student at the University of Maryland, she came and spoke.  I was taking anthropology at the time which is probably why I got to attend her lecture.  She was young.  She was soft spoken.   I looked at her like a hero!   I also got to hear her speak at Constitution Hall with Nick.  I am not sure what the occasion was.  I think my dad gave us the tickets.

And tonight, an older, grayer Jane Goodall was on TV.  She is a mentor to us all and a guardian of the planet.

And, I am left smiling.

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