It Takes a Village
by Nisargo Troy
Summer is a busy time here at Heartwood. People are working in their gardens, out hiking or camping or both, or sitting on the common house terrace after a meal, chatting and enjoying the cooler evening temperatures. We have been blessed with steady afternoon rains so everything is blossoming, plants and people alike. There is a steady stream of visitors, some of them finding ways of staying a little longer and having their own experiences here. Here is some of what happened at Heartwood this July.
by Sandy Thomson
This Fourth of a July we decided to celebrate Heartwood’s 21st birthday. It was just another example of “many hands make light work”. Sarah, Mimi, Gail and Maria did most of the planning. We had a big sign up chart for all the little things that needed to be done. Then each of us just took on a job or two.
Two long tables were filled with bowl after bowl of delicious food while burgers were prepared on the common house grills.
There were decorators, grill masters, beverage cooler stockers, clean up, set up, recycling and garbage crews, and games! Nancy Krebs made it to Heartwood in time to pull together some fun lawn games! We had bubble making, running with an egg on a spoon, crafts, and the ever popular egg toss.
Nisargo and Gabi were the winners of the egg toss with a 18 foot toss caught on the top level of the SS Ponderosa! But we all were winners that day because together we created something special, a fun community event with lots of laughter and connection.
by Nancy Krebs
The other day my soul was shaken to its core when walking the lower pasture I stepped into a depression and fractured my left acetabulum in two places (the socket of the hipbone). On my belly-crawling journey across the pasture to access help, I paused every few minutes to smell the alfalfa/sage/pinon-pine scents, look at the clouds, appreciate the rolling hills and watch horses graze. This beautiful land supported me in the midst of a trauma.
Ilyria, a teen trained in first aid, came running after hearing my calls for help. Her calm, professional, focused attention initiated the loving emergency response of the Heartwood community. And so began the kaleidoscope of care from Heartwood residents of all ages. Through a four hour ER visit Lyn patiently supported me until nearly midnight. A common house guest room was prepared for me as a short-term recovery room. Toddler Bexley delivered flowers. Six year-old Lincoln visited. An offer of temporary lodging sans stairs provided a longer-term safe-haven. Adults brought dinners for six nights, visited, drove me to watch pickleball and follow-up appointments, and shopped for me.
For six to eight weeks post injury I cannot drive nor walk without crutches. Absent the Heartwood community, the initial trauma and subsequent weeks of recovery would have been debilitating. Because of the Heartwood community ethos, I am supported, connected and healing.
Receiving and asking for help has been overwhelming and somewhat stressful. But the grace of residents and their consistent loving kindness, has helped me walk across the bridge of self-reliance to see the peace that one can experience – even in times of trauma – by practicing the humility of relying on others. The Heartwood community has a gargantuan amount of experience supporting folks in life’s big events. Thank you ALL!!
Pigs, Cows and Little Girls
by Erika Douglass
Thanks to Jack and Ronda’s vacation plans, our family (Liam, Erika and Bexley age 2) have had the opportunity to live in their home while taking on their role at Heartwood of caring for the animals and irrigating some of the fields. Bexley has had a wonderful time interacting with the pigs, cows, and llamas and picking bouquet after bouquet of wildflowers in the gorgeous fields while Mama and Papsie are left to do the hard work. 😉 Being able to experience living at Heartwood has made us even more excited about Phase 2 (we are on the list – fingers crossed). We’ve been able to join the happy hours, community dinners, potlucks, pickleball, hikes, and a work party and have had great stimulating conversations. While there aren’t any kids Bexley’s age, the older kids have played with her happily and everyone had been great with suggestions on activities and places to check out (like the Powerhouse Museum in Durango). It’s been a wonderful experience (except for almost stepping on a rattlesnake and cleaning up after the pigs 😉) and we hope we will be able to join the community as residents of Phase 2 (or sooner is someone wants to sell us their house 😉). Thank you to everyone here for being so welcoming and the wonderful experience. We will miss all of you when we have to leave.
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