Listening to the Wishing Tree

Dear Reader:

New Year’s Eve I spent several hours with Mollie and the boys…Mollie didn’t think anything would happen Sunday because she said Eloise was calm and peaceful. (Now we know she was just resting up for her journey.)

So when I left around mid-afternoon Sunday I really didn’t give the impending birth much more thought…at least at first.

But about 5:30 I was going through town on my way home and saw what only could be described as a magical ‘winter wonderland’ in Hutchinson Square. All Christmas decorations were gone and only the purest little white lights were adorned over all the trees and some bushes….benches, statues. It was so tasteful and beautiful I couldn’t get the scene out of my mind.

I found myself turning around and heading back with my Iphone in hand. I knew my power was just about gone but if I could just get one or two photos taken that showed the serenity of the park that drew me back to it…I would be satisfied.

As it turned out I was able to get two shots…the first was of an oak tree covered in white lights seemingly looking up to heaven. I stood under the tree as darkness began descending and shot my pictures through the branches to the lights and stars slowly beginning to appear.

As I looked up into the twinkling eternity I said a little prayer. God, if You are ready for Eloise to join us now…we sure are ready for her to come. Tonight would be just perfect…or even tomorrow…but soon…okay?

I glanced down at some emails on my IPhone and saw a couple from Cindy Ashley. She had shared a verse from Mary Oliver’s Devotions at Christmas (we both love this poet) on listening (and thought of me) and once again…I wondered if a God Wink was forming.

I ask you again: if you have not been enchanted by
this adventure-your life-what would do for you?

And, where are you, with your ears bagged down
as if with packets of sand? Listen. We all
have much more listening to do. Tear the sand
away. And listen. The river is singing.

I went and sat on a nearby bench and just listened to the trees swaying and a few raindrops pitter-pattering down…the park looked so magical late Sunday afternoon under the deepening darkening clouds. A time when anything was possible.

Was Eloise about to begin the greatest adventure of her life...was this verse responding to me concerning my request from God? Was the river singing to her tonight to start her new life?

When I got home we had a bonfire going next door…an oyster roast. It is so wonderful having young couples on the street again…what fun! Luke helped me get “Big Red” inside…not an easy task…but not one stem broke…quite miraculous!

The fireworks had already started when I came inside to charge my phone…it was low but something was urging me to check my texts…and there it was….Mollie’s water had broken, Walsh was on his way home from work, Mandy was checking in…it had started.

The miracle of life. Later I discovered that I wasn’t the only one thinking the baby might be coming on the brink of a new year….Honey had put a request in on a stone …a ritual they have in their church for prayers…and Stephanie just had a gut feeling that something was going to happen New Year’s Eve.

Walsh was right…He and Mollie have been so blessed with each of their children coming on a special holiday…Father’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day…and New Year’s Eve. Special indeed.

So until tomorrow…And the child that is born on the Sabbath day is Bonny and Blithe, and Good and Gay. 

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh


About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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1 Response to Listening to the Wishing Tree

  1. annsuarez says:

    Congratulations, Becky, to you and your family!


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