Butterfly Dragon and gratitude

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4 weeks ago today, at this exact time, we were being told that Russell needed to be moved to ICU.  It is so hard to believe that it has been 4 weeks.  It feels like a lot longer and yet there are moments it feels like it has been just a short time.  I sense myself getting closer to being ready to write the story of how we came to be on the path which has led me to this time, this moment.  But it is not today that I write that story.

Today I write simply of the things that I am grateful for in this time and in this moment.  There is much to fill my heart with gratitude and feel a desire to share that with all of you.  First and foremost today, I am grateful for the gorgeous sun, light spring breeze and warmer temperatures.  For years I have spent so much time outside that my body and mind are very tuned into the seasons.  Rainy days like we’ve had many of this week do have a draining impact on my energy. Sunny days have a lightening impact on my energy.  So today I am deeply grateful for the warm sunshine!

The attached pictures are of the brand new t-shirts I have had created using the awesome Butterfly Dragon image my brother, Jeremy, found for me.  This image is on the back of a golden partially tie dyed t-shirt.  On the front left pocket are the words “this time/this moment” which has become a mantra for me to stay in the Now, because that is really all that we have.  This image and these words have great power for me right now as I rest and recuperate in the ashes/growing soil/egg/cocoon in which I find myself.  I feel a great awakening stirring within me, some of which has already occurred.  This Butterfly Dragon is the me I hope to become when I am ready to fly into the world.  It maybe awhile before I can take full flight but I do feel myself coming out of the Butterfly Dragon egg and starting to stretch my wings into the sun.  So, so much power in this image and these words for me, so much!

So I am thankful for my brother who listened to my heart and my words and found this image for me.  Little could he know how much I would latch onto it and claim it as my own.  Thank you Jeremy.

For the rest of my family, I am also deeply grateful.  All of them have reached out to us in countless ways – changing plans, sending notes, sharing stories, allowing us to set the course for many family plans right now.  My time with them is very precious and I am thankful for their quiet presence, their silliness, their hugs, their love.  I am thankful that Kirsten and I continue to walk similar paths of grieving side by side.  While our paths are different we continue to try and walk our way forward, one baby step at a time, together.  The rest of our family gather around us to give us as much love and strength as they can.

Tonight we will be attending the Trivia Night set up by Silver Spring Pony Club (Kateri is a member) and Immaculate Conception parish to celebrate Russell’s life and act a fundraiser for us to cover all the medical expenses.  Words are not adequate for the gratitude I have for all of the people who have been working tirelessly to pull this together in a very short amount of time.  I have been looking at this night with much trepidation for the last couple of weeks.  One more thing that Russell won’t be attending that we will be looking for him at.  However, today, in this time and in this moment, I am filled with excitement to see everyone and gratitude for all who are attending.  I am pleasantly stunned that as of the last count there were 37 tables signed up.  With 10 people per table we are looking at close to 400 people who will be in attendance tonight. Wow, just wow!  Thank you all for your love.

In every time and in every moment right now I am grateful for my Avalon community who continues to freely give the kids and I ALL the time and space we need to heal.  I know how very rare it is to have a community 100% rally around for weeks on end to not only maintain a space but to help that space grow and flourish.  The amazing Co-op team of Denise, Nikki, John, Kenny, Carrie and Emily have provided consistent leadership, energy and direction for Avalon to be better than ever.  Boarders, lessons students, friends and family continue to offer their time and energy to provide loving care of the horses, dogs, cats and property.  My heart fills with joy at the thought of all of them.

I am thankful for the myriad of tasks that I was able to accomplish in the last few days.  I’ve been able to mark lots of things off my ginormous list and get closer to marking even more off of it.  And each day this week has been a little bit easier to accomplish things.  Easier moving through basic tasks is a very good thing!

I am thankful for all of the abundant financial  outpouring that has come over us through fundraisers, individual cards and donations, and Russell’s and my foresight to obtain life insurance years ago.  To not have to worry right now about finances is an unbelievable gift.

I am incredibly thankful for my life coach/guide, Ayanna, who helped each one of this week clear a few things and get a little more grounded and centered.  Just being in her presence, breathing deeper, and talking through some of the foggy muddleness inside of me is helpful.  Seeing the kids and I be a little bit lighter at the end of the week than we all were at the beginning of the week is oh so good!

Which leads me to a deep gratitude I have every single day – my amazing children.  I stand in awe of their beauty, their wisdom, their kindness, their love, their intelligence, their willingness to share their stories with me, everything about them. They are my heart’s breath and I am so thankful that I am their mother.

I am thankful that for today I am able to walk through the day feeling all the love and light being sent to me.  I physically can feel the presence of those who continue to hold us up and hold us close.  I am grateful that today my heart can feel the lightness and love surrounding us, and that it isn’t just trapped in darkness and confusion.  I am grateful for all of you.  The Web of Healing and Love continues to be spun, day after day, thread by thread by all of you.

Deeply and profoundly and with much love flowing through me, I am thankful for this time, this moment and for the Butterfly Dragon I am becoming.

Peace and love to you all,


P.S.  If you are interested, I am taking orders for the Butterfly Dragon shirts.  They come in small-2X.  They run a little small. Cost is $15 with no delivery cost if you pick them up at Avalon.  Not sure what the cost would be to ship but could do that.  🙂

5 thoughts on “Butterfly Dragon and gratitude

  • I would love one of those t-shirts. XL please. You are an amazing woman and slowly things will get back to normal. Hugs to you.

  • Hi, I’m not sure if you are aware, but the butterfly dragon image that your brother found for you to use on your t-shirts actually belongs to me. You can find the original, uncolored line art image (which was clearly used to make the colored-in design on your shirt) here: http://ember-eyes.deviantart.com/art/Butterfly-Dragon-Line-Art-95295615 . I have no problem with the one shirt that was made for you, but please desist in selling more shirts with the design on it, especially if there is profit being made. However, if no profit is being made, and the cost is simply to cover the creation of the shirt(s), and they are to be for personal use only, I am more than willing to come to some sort of agreement. But please, credit the original design where credit is due. Thank you.

    S. E. Kearn

    • First let me say that I LOVE your design. It is great to know who designed it. I in no way have ever intended to make a profit off of someone else’s creation. My brother found the image in response to some of my early writings after my husband died unexpectedly a few weeks ago. It spoke to him of some of the transformative things I was experiencing. Your butterfly dragon image leapt out at him and when he shared it with me, it grabbed my heart. It has given more peace, comfort, and hope than I can say. Everyday I look at it and breathe a little easier.
      I would love to be able to have the few friends and family who want shirts to be able to get them. Again, this is not for a profit but meant to be for a healing tool. I love that I can tell people who created this image. I know you couldn’t have known what this image could mean for everyone who sees it. But know that it is a powerful part of my journey towards healing right now. Thank you! I look forward to hearing from you.

      • I am very, very sorry for your loss, and I am glad that my drawing could help you in some way. I do apologize for coming on so strongly; I’ve had my artwork taken and used without my permission before, and not everyone’s intentions are as pure as yours. Now that I know what’s going on, I am more at ease. Thank you for your patience in taking the time to explain the situation to me. Although I would have liked to have been contacted beforehand, I can understand how doing so might have fallen by the wayside during a time such as this. Again, I am sorry for your loss, and I hope my drawing will continue to give you what you need right now, and in days to come.

        Best wishes,
        S. E. Kearn

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