Tag Archives: Coin Of The Realm

‘Coin Of The Realm’ by Gloria Christie

I could barely wait until Dad stomped outside, his boots soaked with spring’s dew. “Was there one? Did you find one?”

Spring is the time of buds’ promises fulfilled into flowers and for newly-minted baby calves. It was these babies I awaited impatiently. This morning I was rewarded. Yes! Dad found a new baby calf! Our cow, Oogie, had calved during the night.

Each morning Dad walked round the pastures seeking out the calf that had mysteriously relocated itself from inside its mother to our outside world. One of the most heroic events of a lifetime, I understand. The birthing of oneself.

I jumped up and down with delight at the news of the new calf, even though I couldn’t yet go look. You see, people can’t go near a new mother of the bovine persuasion. I had to wait until she was ready to show off her new baby, swaying with a cow’s sizeable grace up the worn path her pristine calf in tow. The baby’s legs worked all cute and wobbly, its pink nose frosted with mother’s milk.

It occurs to me we are in something of a rebirthing process ourselves right now. Each is thrust into this new world where the ground once terra firma moves beneath us. And the world swirls like a movie run too fast. When the earth slows for a moment, we find that some of us are lucky. And some of us are not.

What is going on anyway? Fire-breathing relatives of the dragons in my fairy tales books have awakened. And these Great Dragons of Greed have come to reclaim our gold and much of our certainty. And as they move about, our earth shakes. When they make demands, our world spins.

Before the dragons awoke, mothers were the CEO’s of their homes and fathers went out into the world to earn money. Now sometimes, even two full-time and two part-time incomes come up short. And if everyone is always working, who leads their babies up the pathway and home?

The sly Great Dragons tell us it is quality of time spent with our children, not quantity. But I wonder. What if we respected parenting and home-/hearth-making demands — whoever is responsible — father, mother, grandparent, good friend or some combination of all?

The Dragons of Greed have sucked all the money out of our homes and our 401(k)s, out of our gas tanks and our yearly salary increases. Now jobs can disappear with a slip of pink paper and half an hour’s notice.

Once we speculated about how to spend our free time as the work week shrank from 40 hours to 37 ½. But now productivity is up. We either keep up on the dragon’s treadmill or fall beneath into its gears, only to be replaced by another hungry for any work at all.
So where’s the opportunity?

Well the Great Dragons of Greed are never satiated, because they don’t understand the great satisfaction of other currencies. We enjoy family and friends, beneficence and kindness. Rewards come when we work as a team in a small business or just shop there. Gold is a helping hand or putting hand to pen or paintbrush.

Surprisingly the shaking earth forces us to seek firmer ground, whether that’s in three-generation homes or questioning whether necessities are necessarily that. Will we invest in a real community or feed our dollars to the dragons? We might watch a child’s first steps, assured of spring’s return.

Creation is spring’s gift. And it can become ours. Just as we greet the baby calves of spring, we can recreate our own lives into something far more alive.

Copyright 2015 by Gloria Christie. All rights belong to the author and material may not be copied without the author’s express permission.