Amen, and amen!
It has been a long while since I sat down to write. Most of this autumn my brain has been healing. Endless rounds of Spider Solitaire, needlepointing Thing 3’s Christmas stocking, and American television* have been the cure. It took a long time for the post-move tension to drain and when it did, I felt like the marrow had been sucked out of my bones. Richard Russo, in his memoir “Elsewhere”, describes this kind of crazy as “domestic triage”. Thanksgiving, good friends, and a little travel have also healed the cerebral bludgeoning.
Last week I went to Seattle to surprise my father for his 74th birthday. As I left for the airport at 4 a.m., falling stars raced toward Earth, lighting the way. I am acutely aware of how many holidays, milestones, and moments I have missed over the last 17 years and was intent on not missing the family “office party”. My parents have been having it for years, a party for two. Then my sisters joined in. I was always jealous. This year I arrived in time for lunch at Cafe Campagne near the Pike Place Market and a surprise-a-palooza for the Popster, as father is affectionately known. It felt like Paris in Seattle. Cocktails, adult conversation, and the satisfaction of us girls, most especially my mother, at having kept a secret. This is a holiday tradition I would like to keep as long as Mr. Understanding can live up to his name …
Before that was the most wonderful Thanksgiving with my in-laws. Seriously. Everyone jokes about in-laws but mine were perfect. Winnie, my MIL, brought me her completed Christmas present from last year, an oil painting of Sankaty Head Light House in Nantucket. For years I had coveted her painting of another Nantucket lighthouse that she gave my BIL so she was kind enough to paint me one of my own. My FIL walked the dog when no one else would, did all the dishes, and kept company in the kitchen. The turkey was beautiful (this time), the teenagers behaved, and it was very peaceful. No other way to describe it!
We are having Christmas dinner just the five of us, no other friends, family or neighbors. In a bizarre way, we are all okay with it. All the Things are tired from school and an all day Pajama Fest is in order.
So what does 2013 bring for the EPP, America, and the world?
For the EPP, a renewed commitment to writing, now that the synapses are firing again. ESL Homework club through the church. Needlepointing. Bible Study. New friends (?) and lots of visits from old ones.
For America, perhaps a dive off a fiscal cliff.
For the world, perhaps a dive off a fiscal cliff.
My hope, however, is for a reconciled America, a reconciled world. Jesus, in my opinion, is bigger than politics, way more powerful than evil, the eternal champion of love. He is neither red nor blue, black nor white, yellow nor green. In world in which He created the whole box of colors, He is every one. He came to love the unloveable. Perhaps this year we can disarm our hearts, unstop our ears, and act like it’s Christmas every day.
*Thank you, The Voice