11:53 am - Rememberance and Gratitude
I'm grateful. Even in the midst of this greif and all the busy-ness for the living which arrives alongside Death when He comes.
I'm grateful for the vulnerability of family members who are usually shielded. I am grateful for the mingling of our tears and the promises of forgiveness and peace even if they are spoken with tongues loosened by alcohol. I am grateful for the food that arrived on Friday night when I got home from the services and the flowers that arrived on Saturday morning. I'm grateful that one of my siblings remembered to call the VA Services and that the five men in Navy Whites were standing outside the church after my Dad's funeral mass, to salute and fold the flag and even fire their guns honoring his service in WWII. I am grateful for friends who came to be with the children while I went to be with my siblings. I am grateful, even, for the simple black dress and sensible black shoes I had to buy the night before the funeral because even with all the black clothing I own, there wasn't a thing that was appropriate to wear to my Father's funeral.
I am grateful for the hours spent yesterday taking care of the simple requirements of running a household--housework and grocery lists and cooking for today's family Labor Day Gathering. I am grateful that my daugher and I are easy with one another in the kitchen--we took on the huge task of making authentic New York Cheesecake to bring to the picnic today, and we graciously worked side by side in the kitchen of our beautiful home. I am grateful that despite all the fear and how close things got earlier this week, the bills managed to get paid before anything got shut off.
I'm grateful to have heard from my old Teacher. A man of few words, he reminded me of some things I needed to hear.
I'm grateful to have found the old image from FaeryGirl, which is a line of magical products I created and sold many years ago. I am going to teach my daughter the recipes and the magic -- and she is going to revive the line as a means of raising money for a trip she wants to take in the spring (watch here for links to the products and a place to donate to her cause).
I'm grateful that somehow, in the midst of all that's been happening, I have been able to locate my Center. I may not be standing in it consistently, but I know where it is and can get there.
I'm grateful. For early autumn day drenched with sun and punctuated by cool winds, and for starry nights perfect for sleeping with windows open; for two wild-eyed black kittens with loud purrs and a penchant for mischeif; for the company of friends and family; for the beginnings of household routines; for the practices which make it all not only bearable but make clear the deep lessons being offered up.
I'm grateful that I already know how to parent myself; that I took my sister's advice years ago when she commanded, "Give yourself all the things Dad didn't. You'll never get those things from him. Give yourself all the love and care and kindness your lovers and husbands withheld." That even though I often "see" too clearly about people, I can forgive us all our shortcomings and know that no matter what, most people are doing the Best They Can, even when that Best seems pretty awful.