@Chef Zorba’s, Denver 2014
My dear friend, mentor, and poet, Betty Maxwell celebrates her 90th birthday tomorrow at home with old friends, at her small loft apartment in Congress Park. When I talked with Betty today, she was clear. Cognizant and responsive, in spite of memory loss. Her garden grows a new smoky plant! We promised I would visit her and walk to Zorba’s soon… The neighborhood includes the Denver Botanic Gardens, Chef Zorba’s, Mark’s church, and memories. Betty’s three adult daughters, two in Vermont, with grandchildren, and K. the Denver landscapist, are now a closer family, after some years of estrangement, and Betty’s life with Divine Science, philosophy, Gifted friends and Co-author Carmen of their book on Visual Learning, will be at the Party tomorrow! “No, Nancy, I never thought of 90,” she said today. “Not as a landmark.” Most of her life she has been a Gifted Counselor, and a former teacher in Ohio, her place of birth. Her maternal line carried Alzheimer’s, and Betty is aware, very aware of these mental tangles and memory lapses, in fact, will acknowledge and state, “I have memory loss, could you repeat that.” Click! Yes. “I no longer drive, so I can’t pick you up.” I told her my blue walker I’ve named Iris and we laughed. A positive force in our friendship has been the discovery of New Thought thinking and spirituality. A longtime member of the former Church of the Divine Science downtown, Betty and her circle paved the way to my own transformation of meditation, retreats, the new movement of affirmations, and deeper love of One. Betty and Walter got along well, and I enjoyed being in their presence, as a mystical fly-on-the-wall. In fact, this morning I heard the old Betty and the new muted, yet centered one, yet it did not matter, for at 90, her spirit, grace and faith has brought her through in awareness: “I have many neighbors who would help me.” I look forward to seeing Betty soon at our favorite downtown haunt. We always share our love for one another in long hugs: and a chocolate dessert.
Happy Birthday, my friend! Have a great year ahead! I love you!