It’s Monday morning at 6:00 am as I sit down to write this. I just came in from sitting out on the balcony. Last night was a terrible night. It was so hot in my condo that I had to spend most of the night outside. But because of the fires out west, and in Saskatchewan, our sky was filled with smoke.
For about a week during high school, I smoked cigarettes to try and fit in with my friends who all were smokers. It wasn’t bad – until I actually inhaled the cigarette. I’ll never forget the taste of ashtray in my mouth. I’m also heavily allergic to smoke and with my asthma now, I can’t be around it. I struggle to breathe. I feel lethargic. My ankles swell. And the wheezing – that’s not even the worst part.
The worst part is feeling like I’ve swallowed that first smoke that I had over twenty years ago. And yet, I have this bad after taste in my mouth. Like I’ve swallowed an entire ashtray.
And I’m in Alberta.
I’ve seen videos and pictures all over TikTok and Instagram from Kelowna, Vernon and Kamloops. My sister and her family are supposed to drive back today from Kelowna. They are surrounded by raging wildfires. A good friend of mine is driving out to Victoria today, and I’m worried as the driving conditions are awful.
I finally gave up on sleep at 5:00 am and sat outside for a while again. I’m spending more and more time out on my balcony. The wind is starting to pick up. I had watched the sunrise, but now the clouds have returned. We just might get that rain after all.
But the smell of burnt ashtray – it’s finally gone and I can breathe a little easier today.
Instead of writing a “woe is me” Monday morning mood post, I thought instead — I would start the day off with a little prayer.
A prayer to Mother Earth for rain.
Not just for us here in Alberta where our crops are so dry. The grass is brown. All my plants and flowers have died because of the heat and smoke.
I sat outside this morning and was still. I listened to the Earth and what she had to say. The leaves were rustling and the gulls were fighting over some food in the parking lot across the street. But now all is silent. All I hear is the wind. The leaves brushing against each other in the darkness.
The birds are quiet. There is no traffic. Everything for the moment, is still.
I can hear rumbling in the distance. The clouds have covered the sun. It’s dark again. I smell rain in the air. And so, I’ll leave you with this morning prayer.
Thinking of all my friends and family out west.
Meditative music for prayer