|aunt jac and our jack circa 1999|
but jacqueline is more than a chaplain at a children's hospital. she's a whip smart, kick arse, well dressed southern girl with impeccable taste and a very racy sense of humor. for those reasons she has been my kin for going on 24 years now.
she hails from miami and once over christmas break from college, i flew down to hang with her and her effervescent mama in the swanky town of coral gables. o, dear me. i do love the lovely, old hollywood feel of coral gables. that particular year, somehow jac managed to get us tickets to the orange bowl. now let me stop right there. neither of us are football fans. or sports fans of any kind for that matter. and if memory serves, we arrived late and left early. the fun was in the going. doing something unexpected and out of character for both of us. and always ones for an adventure and a laugh, sitting in that stadium fulfilled our spirit.
a couple of days later we headed down to key west where we found some nice cuban cigars and played tennis at a fabulous resort jac booked for us. if the olympics gave out gold medals for hospitality, this girl would own several.
every december i think about that trip. two young college girls out exploring. laughing. adventuring. pontificating on the sandy shoreline and making the most out of our christmas break from college. i don't think we planned our lives the way they turned out. we were way too naive and hopeful back then. and that's good. often we want that for our children and ourselves. to live in fairyland as long as we can. squeeze out every morsel of whimsy and optimism before the great big world comes to try to swallow all that up. and still today i hold on to a sense of optimism and whimsy. jac taught me that. we can't let the ugly overshadow the beautiful. we can't let the mundane rob us of our spontaneity.
i hope that in light of all the heart wrenching sorrow that feels like it may swallow us whole, that in some small way, we can remain whole-with the help of a little hope.