COVID has closed everything down, including of course Hevreh of Southern Berkshire, our amazing synagogue in Great Barrington, MA.
It being Saturday morning, I wanted to connect to a Shabbat service. A friend encouraged me to ZOOM into her temple's service. I was excited. I even donned my purple prayer shawl.
All kinds of sunshine was pouring from the sky and falling gently on my keyboard.
To say the service was chaotic does not begin to describe what was happening on the Zoom screen this morning. Having dozens of people trying to sing prayers together at the same moment wasn't working at all!
I was more than a little bored, so I began scrolling through some old word files and suddenly I came upon a word file called
which originally contained a poem I wrote for a magazine called EDIBLE BERKSHIRES.
BUT SOMEHOW THE POEM HAD DISAPPEARED.
INSTEAD THE FILE CONTAINED QUITE AMAZINGLY A BIRTHDAY GREETING THAT I WROTE IN 2013 FOR MY DEAR MOTHER,
DENA CLEMINTINA RICCI,
ON HER 87TH BIRTHDAY.
How can this possibly be, I asked myself. But really, I wasn't altogether surprised.
THINGS LIKE THIS KEEP HAPPENING.
Call them what you will: COINCIDENCES. MIRACLES, all kinds of weird things I cannot explain. MY SPIRITUAL TEACHER MARY M SAYS IT’S TIME I’M WILLING TO ACCEPT THE FACT THAT THESE MIRACLES KEEP OCCURRING. It's time I start keeping track of them.
Okay, back to Saturday.
As I was sitting there puzzling over the disappearance of my poem, my husband walked into my study.
"Going to the grocery store so wish me luck," he said.
I turned to him. "Hey honey, would you buy me a small purple orchid," I begged. Not that I need another orchid. My kitchen counter has seven already.
He chuckled. "Honey, I have all I can do to buy food in these COVID times. You can do without another orchid."
He left and then I turned back to the birthday greeting I had written mom years back.
Imagine my shock when I read this:
Today is your 87th birthday.
When you turn 87, there aren't a whole lot of birthday presents one can buy.
You want health and happiness for
Yourself and all of those
The one I bought you a year
A few months ago
all the blossoms
and Dad said, let's
get rid of
that plant it's just three bare sticks.
But no, Mom,
despite your vision issues,
you saw something
tiny and green budding there
on one of those bare branches
four or five new pink blossoms appeared!
the sun room
each week, on Tuesday,
you put two ice cubes in the pot
not a drop more water.
You were just adorable
caring for your orchid.
So today, your day, it
wasn't difficult to know
what to buy you
I ought to get my mother
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!
We Love You So Much,
I ASKED RICH FOR ORCHIDS AND HE DIDN'T WANT TO BUY ONE BUT MOM BROUGHT THEM TO ME INSTEAD.
SO OKAY MOM YOU ARE SENDING ME SIGNS AND I HAVE FINALLY STOPPED DOUBTING IT.
I'm going to do what Mary says: record all the miracles that are happening to me all the time!