A Year

Tonight it’s been a year since my mom died. Had I been blocking this out today? For the past week I’ve been in a funk – crochety, ill at ease and a bundle of raw nerves. Today I blanked on the signifigance of the date. I also blanked on a birthday party that Maxie was supposed to go to, and I forgot an open house we were going to attend at a nearby Jewish Community Education Center (checking into Hebrew schools that we can afford AND that suits our liberal, ethical, Reform souls.)

All I really accomplished today was a good amount of sitting, knitting, some walking. Oh, and this morning the whole family went out to breakfast at our new local diner. Not a fitting memorial. At the end of mom’s funeral last year we released baloons from the hillside where she’s buried next to Dad (and near to her mother and sister). I know some folks thought that might not be fitting, either – but I’ve never been a one-size-fits-all type of gal. Pantyhose and grief should always be tailored to the wearer. And so much of grieving is wrapped up in wearing uncomfortable panty hose – hmmmmm.

I’m thinking of driving down to WV at the end of this coming weekend, after my teaching gig in Wooster, OH at the Great Lakes Fiber Show, and before I drive back up to Lake Erie to meet up with Gerry and the kids at our rental house. I can drive down, visit her grave, see the marker, visit family – especially my cousin, who’s just finished her last session of Radiation. I’ve half threatened to kidnap Jan and drag her up to the rental house for a few days with the kids. I feel that I’ve detached myself so dramatically for the past year, and I guess it’s time to engage again.

Mom’s Yarzeit, for the Jewish among us, would be June 9, 2005 (2 Sivan, 5764) so I still have an opportunity for a meaningful (for me) gesture of closure of the first year of grief. Lighting a 24-hour candle is the tradition – and saying the Kaddish (mourning prayers – in my case, not with a minyan of 10 men…)

This may be an empty gesture in some ways since mom was a lifelong Methodist who had joined my sister in law’s Baptist church after moving in with Jim and Karen, yet the yartzeit is still meaningful to me. Me, the faux, non-converted ethically-Reform-identifying family keeper of Shabbat and Pesach.

And Creative Strands is cancelled. I hadn’t realized how much I was looking forward to it until the slim letter came from Augusta Marketing, but there it is – not enough participants.

And I’m supposed to have a credible and intelligent conversation with a rep from a publisher on the phone tomorrow, and I know that I’ll sound confused, dazed and mildly annoyed (this is how I sound on the phone all the time – I lose my focus if I’m not looking someone in the face, or if I’m not able to reply in writing.)

The thumb is healing, but it’s painful, still, to knit with anything other than soft silk or merino (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it…) so no wire knitting or other oddball stuff right now. I was self indulgent enough, today, to spend hours working on the start of a kimono-jacket for me. We’ll see…

Yes, it obviously is time for a vacation. I’m very excited to take the kids to Cedar Point, to Put-In-Bay, to Kelly’s Island. Maybe we’ll hit a minor league ball game – or even a major league one – while we’re away – we like to do that. We can visit the The Toledo Zoo, where mom created MANY happy birthday parties for my brother and I.

I’m rambling. I’m very sad. I’m feeling more than a little overwhelmed by the past few years. I’m afraid I’m not very funny tonight. I couldn’t sleep so I lit the only candle in the house – a Pumpkin Pie Housewarmer from Yankee Candle – oddly fitting.

BTW, here’s my first pass at a postcard to send to yarn shops to drum up class gigs – suggestions?

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