What Happens Once in a Blue Moon?

Blue Moon

August 2012’s Blue Moon

Jamie invited the girls over to dinner at her beach house last night and I knew we would talk about everything under the sun.  Among other things Jamie just started her own blog, Under The Dune Moon and finally has a place for all her rants and raves and beach photos.  It’s worth stumbling upon.In any event, I’ve mentioned how I’ve been thinking a lot this week about August’s so-called Blue Moon — the astrological phenomenon where two full moons appear in the same calendar month.  It’s rare but not unusual, happening every couple of years or only about 40 times in a century.August started out with two death events, what with the Toronto road trip for Ann’s mother’s death and my remembrance of my own mother’s death on August 5th, 1996.  I don’t like months to start that way because I’m always waiting for the 3rd event to occur.  It’s the sort of anticipation that makes me feel all nervy.

Throw in this blue moon thing and it seemed to merit a little research, thought and this time, even a poem.  Nothing to me is a coincidence; I believe all events conspire to give us messages, provide meaning and often to spur us on from places where we are stuck.

So what would a blue moon mean and what opportunities lie within it?

Digging around on the Internet, I found some guidance.  It read:

Astrology and the Full Moon

Astrologically the energy of the full moon works to integrate and harmonize the contradictions in the self and others. During a full moon, the seeds sown at the last new moon are ready to be harvested and utilized. Traditionally, the full moon is seen as a time for meditation and particularly for personal issues and global concerns.

During the blue moon this vibration is said to be three-fold. In some cultures the second full moon was considered a very holy and auspicious day. A time when the veil between heaven and earth is thin and the ability to communicate with the gods and goddess is very powerful. It is considered a very spiritually significant time for prayer and meditation going back thousands of years.

Aha!  That thin veil thing again.  It meant that there were signs to come, and I was hoping there would be one for Ann from her mother.  Today she flew down to Florida to begin a family cruise.  When they walked off the airplane, they were greeted by the rainbow posted below.  I’ve had my own rainbow as well and when you need it, it is amazing to see it appear.

I sighed in relief.  Maybe this blue moon had some positive gifts to bear.

Ann's Rainbow

A Rainbow for Ann

If you read about blue moons, there is also some theory that you should focus on your changes — the reference to ‘harmonizing the contradictions in others and self.’  I think I’ll let those evolve on their own this month.  With the blue moon set to arrive on August 31st, I’ll wait for what I think will be its gifts.

Once in a Blue Moon

I live in serendipity

A special community

Where good chance passes through

Just about everything I do.

A glance, a wink, a nod

It really is not so odd.

When you think events conspire

To bring what you desire.

They do.


What does the blue moon mean to you?  Please share.

Returning to Green Bay

Rainbow on I-43 North September 30, 2011

Since my parents passed away in the mid-1990s, my return visits to my hometown of Green Bay, WI are tied to special events rather than happenstance occurrences.  With a class reunion looming, I made plans with two St. Joseph Academy high school friends to attend the event together and didn’t initially give much thought to maximizing my time there.  But as the weekend approached, it seemed right to think about, and perhaps visit, some of the landmarks from childhood.

After all the research and thinking I’d already done for Anne on Fire, I decided to let the weekend unfold on its own rather than attempt to orchestrate anything.

As Barbie, Teresa and I hit Highway I-43 for the drive north, the largest and most beautiful rainbow appeared ahead of us (see photo above), symbolically beckoning us forth, or at the very least giving us a very good feeling about the weekend.  (For meaning on rainbows, see:   http://gurneyjourney.blogspot.com/2008/08/what-do-rainbows-mean.html and http://www.buzzle.com/articles/colors-of-the-rainbow-and-their-meaning.html) .  Our feeling was right on the money:  Green Bay had changed and expanded since our high school days but our connections to each other felt as if no time had passed. 

519 Spring Street, Green Bay, WI

On Saturday, we did some errands and then drove by the old neighborhood.  I hopped out of the car and took a picture of my old house at 519 Spring Street (above) and then we headed out of the city to visit Teresa’s parents for lunch.  For our entire childhood, Teresa and I lived across the street from one another, frequent refugees in each other’s houses and intertwined in the storylines of growing up.  Her parents had long since moved from the St. James neighborhood we shared and we pulled up to a cozy brown ranch with an enormous garden next to it.  The table was set for lunch and after a tour of the garden (and some choice pickings from the remaining harvest) we settled in to catch up and break bread. 

As lunch neared its close, Teresa’s dad turned and sincerely asked, “Now Annie, tell us what you are doing with yourself.”   After telling of husband and kids, I mentioned my Anne on Fire pursuits hoping they might have a remembrance or two to share.  I watched Teresa’s mom nodding and then she said, “I do remember how hard it was on your mother.  There was one day when I went across the street to visit and she told me she had just received a call from the Service League.  Just the day before I had received one as well and of course with all the kids I had, there was no time for me to be volunteering for other things but they must have been calling some of the neighborhood women.  After what had happened with you, there was of course no way your mother could have joined and she told them that.  They wanted her to know however that they were very busy because they were regularly visiting you in the hospital.  Well, your mother was about as mad as I’ve ever seen her.  ‘Gwen,’ she said ‘How could they?  If they really wanted to be of service, why wouldn’t they come to my home and watch my other two children so that I could visit my own daughter in the hospital?””

She continued, “Annie, I think your mother had a lot of stories like this.  There were things she wished people could have or would have done to help.  But in that day and time, we didn’t say what we wanted.  We accepted what was there.  I know there were many people who were there for her and we all tried to help her as much as we could.”

We talked some more about what they knew about the accident.  I wondered how many other friends and neighbors in Green Bay had bits and pieces of the story like Teresa’s parents did.    It meant so much to have these details, to hear their recollections; to fill in the context I had been seeking.  I wondered too why some people like Teresa’s parents were so forthcoming and others so resistant.   I wondered if I had enough stories and if not, where to probe for more.

With warm hugs and muddy shoes from the garden visit, we pulled out of the driveway and returned to our reunion adventure.  I squeezed in time to see my brother coach his son in a kiddie football game and visit with my sister and sister-in-law.  When my sister Susie invited me to church on Sunday, I met them at our old parish, St. John the Evangelist, before driving back to Chicago.

Everything about the visit felt right — the warmth of a small town, the ease of going from Point A to Point B and the connections with the people gathered there that weekend.  Even my own Anne on Fire story felt right, that things happened just as I’d been told they did, that people knew, remembered and cared.  If you let it happen, you can always be home.

St. John the Evangelist Church, Green Bay