Hardship has never escaped the human family. We are pummeled by Nature and by the ignorance that compounds suffering.
My Navajo friend told me how her grandmother fought to keep her baby alive during the forced Long Walk. Mothers who lost their own babies would give what little breast milk they had to the infant. That infant was my friend’s mother. I’ve often reflected on the courage, perseverance and kindness that enabled Annie, my friend, to exist. And how blessed was that existence with all of its hardships.
I remember witnessing her in morning prayers. Though humble, she was not docile. She stood boldly in her life and welcomed all of the winds that blew her way.
The story of shared breast milk was not new to me. My mother had been the recipient of wet nurses as they were called. My grandfather had been killed and my grandmother lost her ability to breastfeed. Poverty demands help. And help came in the form of neighbors. I’ve often reflected on the strength and the compassion that surrounded my mother’s existence. And how blessed was that existence with all of its hardships. She, too, had the gift of powerful prayer.
I am the recipient of the Love of these two matriarchs. With that kind of Love mountains can move.
All of us have been blessed with existence and while our stories vary, hardships and blessings have come our way. Be nourished by them.
These are hard times. These are the times to dig for strength and to uncover our gifts, to seek and offer help. We have the potential to flourish, individually and collectively, despite the hardships.
Have the clarity to be guided by Love. Find the courage to hold onto it.
Regardless of hardship, it is a blessed existence.
The above photo is of Annie.
2 thoughts on “Blessed Existence”
Beautifully written, Dena. The wet nurse story is powerful!
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Thank you, Judy.