When the phone rings a few minutes after midnight the news that comes is rarely good. The caller was my supervisor advising me that one of the people I supervise and her child had been involved in a bad accident. He was on the way to the hospital and I told him that I would get a shower and be on the way. I quickly showered and made my way to the hospital which was right at an hours drive if there was no traffic.
I drove through the night, I noticed the Moon and how beautiful and large she was shining a golden orange with only half of her visible. It occurred to me that we are in the waning phase and she would go new again in less than a week. Yet Lady Luna was so big and so beautiful I knew that it was a message from the Goddess. She was giving me strength and comfort to safely make a long drive at the end of what had been a long and emotionally draining day. This was my reminder that We are Her Daughters and She gives us strength and comfort to do what must be done.
I arrived at the hospital a little after 1:00 am. Parking at the emergency room which is the only trauma center was available quite away from the buildings entrance. This place that saves lives is in the middle of a place where life is hard and crime is rampant. I began my walk to the entrance thinking this is not a good place for a lengthy stroll in the day time and the cover of night only added to my need to take a deep breath and make that walk with confidence knowing I had a mission and a duty to perform and my Sister and her Daughter were in there and they would need more than medical care.
After the fifteen to twenty minute delay at the desk while I was identified and cleared to go back I finally got to the waiting room. In addition to a few of her family, my supervisor and his supervisor were there. They are both caring and compassionate individuals but Duty required that they be there. By no means do I intend to diminish either ones caring and compassion by saying they were obligated by Duty but this is important to know because this is where things take a different turn for me. As her supervisor my Duty at that time was to respond and offer assistance to her and any family there and then share the appropriate information with those others I supervise.
I look down at my clothing, I am wearing my comfy sneakers, jeans, and a decent top. By looking at me you see no indication of a uniform. The call of Duty had alerted me to a need of my Sister. I came because she had two daughters, one who is twelve the other one in her early twenties who a Mother to a one year old Daughter. If the twelve year old was the Daughter in the accident then the older Daughter was going to need someone to help with the toddler. If the older Daughter had been the one in the accident then there was going to be a traumatised twelve year old there who would need someone. My Duty was to my Sister, to take any action necessary to insure the best possible care of whoever was not injured.
Sure there was other family there but her current husband was just ahead of them in his truck when the crash occurred. He had witnessed a wife and daughter entrapped in a crumpled twisted pile of metal cry in pain and fear as Law Enforcement and EMS personnel sprang into action. He was primarily with my Sister and then up to check on the Daughter who was on another floor being prepped for surgery. She was in great pain and fearful for her Mother who she could not see due to the immediate urgency of their individual medical needs. My Sister's parents were there primarily with the Daughter. They had hurried to the scene of the accident, the Father hearing details of the Emergency workers conversation over the radio, himself a longtime responder to such accidents, knowing the situation for his child and grandchild was horrific. He and the Mother waited primarily with their Grandchild each one occasionally coming to check on their Daughter and relay information about the Grandchild to her. Another family member who is a Sister/Mother to my Sister was there and remained with in the room with my Sister to attend to her personal needs while the emergency room staff tended to other patients.
I sat in the waiting room holding my Sister's granddaughter. She was sleeping on my shoulder. I gently rocked her to keep her from waking. The little one would have been scared and would have cried loudly as small children do when they find themselves in unfamiliar places with unfamiliar people. The only help I could offer my Sister at this point was caring for her Grandchild. I stayed here like this for about an hour until her husband came back and said she would want to see me but we couldn't take the baby back into the treatment room. I left the little one in the care of another relative who had arrived and went to see my Sister. As I entered my Sister's room her eyes turned toward me. Her body was still immobilized as her condition had yet to be fully determined. I knew that my Sister was always concerned about dying and nobody telling her that was the case when people were nice to her so I made a rude comment to her about this being a ridiculous length to go to in order to get out of a little work and then I insulted the professionalism and customer service of the person working the registration desk. Before leaving to go back to the waiting area I told her she needed to give a class on customer service and charm to the person working the desk and that was a direct order. She tried to smile and said she was only worried about her Daughter. I told her that we had just learned that she was in surgery and that she was only expected to need one operation to repair the damaged hip and that there were no internal injuries as had been the concern from early. It was now that I saw some relief wash over her. She had been told this before but now was able to process the information. I reassured her that I would remain and care for her Grandchild until someone arrived to take the child to her own home, and then make sure her older daughter who was not in the vehicle wreck but had fainted upon seeing her younger Sister and Mom had recovered to the point of being able to function, and the twelve year was at a point in her care that we knew she would heal during her surgery.
I maintained my vigil in the waiting area for another few hours. All of the situations settled and then my Duty to Duty came back to the top of my priorities. I made one last offer of help in any manner to her parents and then left to go back and share the information with the people I supervise, my Sister's coworkers. For those of you reading this who haven't had the chance of meeting this whacky cast of characters I will tell you how Duty lead to Sisterhood.
Our desks are about eight feet apart, we occupy this space for more waking hours than we do with our blood families, my Sister and I. Our long work days involve us dealing with the worst that society has to offer and some of the silliest that provide needed comic relief to us. Over the many years we have spent so literally physically close we have developed a bond, a Sisterhood. We are both females in our early forties who come from the same socio-economic background. We both have Daughters the same age from relationships we had at the end of high school with males who were ultimately violent with us and inattentive at best to our children. Later we both lost Sisters, she lost a blood Sister to a horrific medical degenerative condition, me a non-blood Sister that I had grown up with to a grand mal seizure that ended this part of her life when she fell into her pool while seizing, a pain we both still experience at times. Our Daughters have each made us proud and at times question our abilities as Mothers from the decisions they have made. They tend to mirror each other what one has done the other is going to be doing soon even though these girls did not grow up together and do not know each other, their similarities are another tie that binds us. We are both very strong in our Faiths even though she is a Christian and I am Dianic Wiccan we honor the similarity in values of our belief systems which are many and set aside our differences which are pretty much the result of the culture developed in our individual faiths. We each come from families with a long history of community service along with a few crazy members that make us just shake our heads and laugh to keep from crying.
A few weeks ago my Daughter and her fiance made the decision to lawfully marry so that he could obtain the medical care he desperately needs. He had lost his job and hence his insurance after their betrothal and had to have legal marriage in order to get him on her insurance and the deadline for that to happen was fast approaching. The only way to accomplish this for the Lady who agreed to marry them in the time frame necessary was to have it at our place of employment. A blessing was offered and the legal documents signed. A small wedding cake was served with soft drink and a small bouquet of my Daughters favorite roses served as the only decoration. I had asked my Sister and a three others who are Sisters to be the legal witnesses. My parents and ninety two year old Grandmother attended and even though it was a small and brief service in a most unconventional setting, the blessings and well wishes offered were sincere and it was a remarkable moment. I sat down at my Sisters desk and thanked her for canceling her Daughters orthodontist appointment so she could be there after the service was over and everyone gone. We are Amazons, that was done and over in less than thirty minutes, we laughed at our effectiveness in accomplishing whatever mission we had to accomplish. I told her that I had thought of her in preceding few days and asked how she dealt with the pain of not having her Sister physically present at such an important events for her own Daughter. She said, "I just do it", she further confided that we were alike in that the magic was just in doing and appreciating the Love in the relationships we have had with those who have crossed the veil and the Love in the relationships we have on this side of the veil. Her presence for my Daughter that day was a source of comfort for me and her words for me were inspiration and validation that we just need to keep on keeping on. Last night was my turn to stand for my Sister and her Daughters. Neither was a grand or elaborate action on either of our parts nobody else would have noticed either one but it was the fabric of our Sisterhood that was woven and strengthened by another yet another link.
These small acts that impact our lives and bring comfort when times are tough are the very essence of the Dianic call to action in the very last line of the Susan B Anthony Coven Number 1 Manifesto which tells us that "Our immediate Goal is to congregate with each other according to our ancient woman-made laws and to remember our past, renew our powers, and affirm our Goddess of the Ten Thousand Names." Our Sisterhood is what gives us the strength and courage to continue on our Paths, what an excellent reminder of the strength and beauty we possess as Women, we are the life givers, our life blood is the tie that binds humanity. So fitting, this on the celebration of the 40th Anniversary of Z Budapest forming the Susan B and scratching out the tenants of Dianic belief on a napkin. Her hand reached through time and space forty years into the future and thousands of miles away from the West Coast where she sat on that night, her words helped to mold and guide me which in turn has had an impact on a Sister of another faith and her children. I am reminded of those soft and comforting words "We all come from the Goddess and to Her we shall return like a drop of rain flowing to the ocean..........." as my journey along the Path continues.