29 August 2012

Lake Alone One

I indulge myself in very prolonged daydreams. For example, when I can't sleep, 
I'll ask myself a question then settle in to a detailed answer.  Or, while 
working on a long project with my hands I will happily settle in to a story of my own making.
This also explains why I like redundant and tedious hand tasks like needlepoint 
or knitting. A long drive, oh a long drive, especially on the motorcycle when I can't talk,
I will work it all out in my head. Often I will describe a perfect weekend 
spent with the old gang of girlfriends. I might plan the perfect visit to 
a place I have been before and know well enough to work out the story. I will 
daydream about all the things I would do with a week alone.

And now I have 3 days alone. Between caring for my family and the start of the 
next job I have 4 months off. And a lake cabin. I had never been there alone in the 8 
years we've had it. I needed to spend that time with my family. Once Allie was 
on a week long vacation this month and with the threat of selling it I decided 
to come alone. I slept so well. I beaded. I journaled.  I only did half of 
what I thought I would accomplish.

This post will be an indulgent log of my days alone. Rather than working it 
all out in my head I get live it.

I sit here on the porch, in my rugged rocking chair, a beloved valentine gift 
many years ago from Husband, iPad in my lap, Spencer at foot. It is not windy, 
rare, rare in Oklahoma. Cicadas pulse in the trees. It's warm but not as it 
ought to be for August. The lake is smooth, a powdery blue that nearly matches the 

I left home this morning for the two hour drive, coffee finished, Spencer in the back 
and my soy chocolate milk that feels like such indulgence. Does that make 
me sound healthy, worthy? Not to worry,  once I got here I ate half a cupcake while waiting 
for leftover pizza to warm...

On the way I made a stop at Quilt Barn Antiques. I haven't stopped there in 
about 7 or 8 years. Last time I bought an Oklahoma tablecloth which is displayed 
here at the cabin. This time they wouldn't take a credit card and I didn't have a 
checkbook so I was limited to the $18 in cash I was carrying. Thirteen dollars 
later I had these linens and bandage box. Such beauty. I laid them out once I 
got there and sat my iPad temporarily there. An odd and intriguing mix.
I unloaded groceries, started a load of laundry. To me, it's home when laundry is going.
I am always ready to start the day with the washer and dryer at work. 
I filled the bird feeders, a task I stopped during the high heat of summer. There
was enough for the birds to eat and I just am tired of my sweaty, menopausal back dripping. 
This visit I feel like being outside enjoying the porch and 
watching the waves of birds come by. Also I was feeling bad about 
the hummingbirds coming 'round all summer with faith that I had filled 
their feeder. I did this time. Come on little birds. 
And within minutes a ruby 
throated hummingbird hovers in and I whisper the prayer "thank you."
Inside now to the couch to read a chapter of the Tibetan motherhood story Across 
Many Mountains and drift off to sleep. 

16 August 2012

She's Gone

I keep playing that Daryl Hall and John Oates song "She's Gone" in my head.
Allie moved to another state. My little girl moved away.
That morning felt like I was going to a funeral.
I don't mean that in any glib way, I have been to many. Too many.
I didn't think I could get out of the house.
 We drove her car. Drove away from Oklahoma.
I tried for her not to know how devastated I felt. She seemed fine.
I left her there. Looking at her with her pillow under her arm took me right back to that first day of school. She was so mad that I wanted to stop and take a picture.
That was a big day too but dammit she still lived with me.
But now, college...There she went. Swallowed up by all the other kids.
So ready. So excited.
Leaving her on that college campus, I went to the car and bawled. 
I didn't cry until I felt better, I bawled until I felt worse.
I got on the train to come home, head pounding. 
The four and half hour train ride became six hours. Misery. Truly.
This guy got me through that ride.
Away from Allie. Home to my husband.

I felt like I had been beaten the next morning.
But something started to happen...
a shaky effervescence came over me.
My loss, my grief means that Allie gets to start her wonderful life.

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