Thursday, April 4, 2013

Lei-ing memories

Today, I had a flashback to my childhood. As I walked into the dance studio, I saw a friend was wearing a beautiful lei, which her husband had given her for her birthday.

I remember my parents dancing in our living room, in the days before Multiple Sclerosis messed with my mother's balance and strength.  At one point, my mother took up hula dancing. (I've written about that before, and am now republishing the post, and another one, on dancing with my mom at Spirit Moves, from an old blog to this one, should anyone care to read them.) The summer before I started kindergarten, my parents went to Hawaii, which I think sealed the deal for my mom and hula.

I looked at those purple blossoms gathered together, sitting lightly around my friend's neck, and suddenly, I was seeing my mother at my wedding. Months before Javaczuk and I wed, when I'd asked my mother what type of flowers she wanted to have as mother of the bride, she didn't even consider the traditional corsages.  "Can I have a lei?," she'd asked. "It will be like having your father's arms around me," How could I say no?

Heather and I adjust Ruthe's lei before the wedding ceremony; March 11, 1984

Today, as our group gathered in the wonderful Spirit Moves studio, I felt the soft petals of an invisible lei settle on my shoulders, and danced, once again*, with my mother.

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