I am not alone

I  entered the age-stage-changing arena at 57, a bit earlier than my peers, due to circumstances beyond my control. I girded my loins and went into battle to survive a mysterious landscape which included a diminishment and loss I never, ever, anticipated . I was on a hero’s journey. By myself. My companions were my musings.

It’s different now. Continue reading

Witness the shifts in life…

Today it was the morphing of my “to do list” that caught my attention.

At one point in the crux between the old (2005) and the new(2006) year, I noticed that one of the things that had fallen away was my need for my “to do list.”  In my nearly obsessive, and I will add pleasurable, 30 years of working life, the “to do list” was how I guided myself, proved myself, measured myself, kept myself moving in the “right” direction.  It was an essential part of my day.  Such that I’d put things on the list only to be able to “proudly”check them off.

And then, one day, that crux, the mysterious combination of age and illness and grace, allowed me to enter “the flow” in life. Continue reading

Dear South Hadley…


In the spirit of the thanksgiving season, I want to express my gratitude.  Actually to the town of South Hadley.

It’s the place I have called home since 1944 when the Johnson Family (Richard and Betty and their children) moved to 3 Woodbridge.  Their second and smaller dwelling at  255 Pearl,  became my home in 2000 when I returned to heal and retire.  But now I, too, depart. The rest of my siblings having done so already.   The revered former Christmas Tree Farm has now been sold to wonderful new owners.

I am so very grateful for my growing up years in this scenic New England town, where our playground of choice in the 40’s and early 50’s was the college campus, College Pond, the sledding hill (now an ampitheatre), the skating rink (old hockey field)  and the old tennis courts.  I am also grateful for the last 12 years, when I had the privilege to care for the now conserved meadow beneath the mountain, with a view of the Summit House.

It feels like the end of an era. For me, the last six months have been consumed with downsizing, staging, selling, moving, saying an  emotional “goodbye” to this place I always loved.

Thank you, South Hadley, for the specialness you offer to those who live here.  May you continue to prosper.

And, since I’m only next door,  I’ll be back to visit.

Martha Johnson