Wednesday, March 17, 2010


This Friday we welcome the vernal equinox. With open arms. I am completely awed by the miracle of spring that's unfolding all around me; I think I am especially reveling in it because I especially need it this year. Rebirth. A fresh start.

It's in the quality of the light, the return of the birds, the bits of green coming through all around.

And it is in the absence of snow. There is still a bit of snow around the edges of our driveway, where the drifts were once as tall as me. But it's disappearing steadily.

Christmas Club members, I will be giving you a reminder and admitting that I wasn't up to it last month. I've been sewing quite a bit lately -- 2 pairs of fleece pants for Dean (yes! just in time for warmer weather.... Oh well!), a jacket for me (the wrong-season thing doesn't matter as much since I won't outgrow it, and I'm not talking about the silly one from my previous post), some small bags, a little quilt and bedding for a doll bed that's going to the school auction. Although none are for Christmas, they've got my sewing/crafting energies flowing and the Christmas stuff WILL follow. I'm going to attempt to learn to make ties -- one for Ken, one for Dean, and more if they work out all right. I've been saving up tins to decoupage for use as gift containers.

Dean's birthday is coming up in a few weeks; I've never been so far behind in getting ready for that. It's fortunate for me that planning a birthday party for a 12-year-old is a lot less complicated than those pony parties I used to give for him when he was younger, but I still feel bad about not being as on top of things as usual. His birthday is the same day as Easter this year, which also has to be prepared for and celebrated.

We were supposed to be heading to Chicago next month as well, to visit my brother and his family and to carry out a memorial service for my mom. For many complicated reasons, it's not going to happen -- my brother and I came to terms with the reality that the service we were envisioning wasn't going to happen (disheartening beyond words that the church in the parish where we lived for 20 years, where the 4 of us went to school, where my mom taught and worked tirelessly on behalf of the church just isn't interested in having us hold her service there -- one of several roadblocks). Also some very complicated family issues in play. I had been so focused on the service as the means for processing my grief, for celebrating her life and moving ahead, that I'm struggling now to figure out what to do with all of this instead.

The thing about me is that I am an intensely private person. I process the big stuff internally. Not even Ken has a clue as to what I've been going through for the past 5 weeks. The benefit of an open, public service to me would have been a way to bring it out and put it someplace in a healing way. We didn't have a service for my dad (also a complicated family issue, revolving around the same person who's made it so difficult this time) and I know that's left a piece unfinished for me all these years. So once again, I'll be dealing with this in a private way for my mom, not working it past my own head and out into the light. I was the one to scatter my dad's ashes and perhaps it will come down to that again this time. One of my brothers was with me when I fulfilled my dad's wish to have his ashes scattered in the Gulf of Mexico. Perhaps the other brother will be with me when we figure out the right thing to do for my mom (unlike my dad, she hadn't said that part).

Well. I am back to the beginning, so entirely grateful for the miracle of spring -- for the arrival of it just when I need it most.


KristenMary said...

How frustrating about the church!! I'm so sorry, because it sounded like a fitting tribute to your mother. Hopefully with time you will figure out something that will be even more satisfying and give you closure.

Natalie said...

Jennifer... there is so much here. You need some relief... I am glad the signs of spring, the prospect of Christmas club, are giving you some distraction and comfort.
You are in my thoughts.

Juddie said...

Thinking of you Jennifer ...

I'm glad that Spring is coming, just at the right time for you (down here in Melbourne the golden days of autumn are beginning to unfold).

May the coming weeks treat you gently ...