Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Amazing Grace

I didn't feel like writing yesterday because the pain was so intense.

I thought maybe I was done with sharing our grief story.

Three months and maybe people are tired of hearing about the different ways we are having to say goodbye. That it hurts.

I thought about it.

But then, I considered that someone out there might get the crazy idea that everything is supposed to feel all better by now and it doesn't.

Since it was raining I felt compelled to clean out Philip's dresser drawers and closet. I don't know why, but it seemed like the right time. A window.

Parts of the task were funny.

I found my missing pound cake recipe in his top drawer.


I have been looking for that scribbled out recipe for freshly milled spelt pound cake for a few months. It is so faded out, I can barely read it, the scrawled recipe dashed out on an old torn up cover of an old cookbook.

Why was that stuffed in Philip's drawer?

I don't know, but it made me smile.

I found many dollars worth of pennies.

A couple of old love letters he wrote to me before we were engaged.

A box with a pretty pair of earrings that I think he must have picked up for me, stashed and then forgot. I was happy to find them because they matched the dress I wore to Sean and Julie's wedding just perfectly.

Buttons. Old scout merit badges. Japanese money. Irish money. French money.

Lots and lots of pens that might work.

Cuff links never worn.

Saying good bye is hard.

The kids and I picked out some things that would make sweet mementos. We put most of the clothing into bags to give to Goodwill because that would please Philip.

The bulletin boards we made into collages with Philip's photos for the funeral were beginning to fall to pieces. I took the photos off and put them into a box, which we will later take and place into photo albums for the kids. That was intensely painful.

Saying goodbye is hard.

It rained some more today. I was happy to have the new shed for milking. Forcing myself to go out and move helped my painful soul stir a bit.

Coco has gotten over her disgruntlement with the change of milking site and now happily walks into the shed. She adapted to her change rather quickly.

We are trying to adapt as best as possible to our changes.

Tonight I didn't want to cook. Yesterday I made eggs three meals in a row.


Omelets for my breakfast.

Omelets for our lunch.

Omelets for the girls' supper.

At least the ones at lunch had some onions and greens from the garden and homemade goat cheese in the middle.

Tonight I forced myself to cook up some of our pork chops, some broccoli and leftover rice.

It was an act of discipline, since I was tired and sad and thick with grief.

We all sat around the table and enjoyed our food. We talked about Philip, and the changes and how weird it is to have him gone. We talked about the time of day we miss him most. We talked about how hard it is to have one of the grown ups missing with all the work that needs to be done. We laughed at some of the memories of his crazy antics. Rose remembered how he would take them swimming and do swim ballet with her, always ending the dance with a gigantic toss up into the air and a splash. I asked the kids if it would hurt them too much if I moved the furniture around in my room and changed the paint on the walls. They thought that was a good idea, as long as we didn't change any thing else much in the rest of the house. I assured them that I like the rest of the house just as it is.

I am glad that I didn't hibernate to my room and leave the kids to their own devices at suppertime. Grace flowed around the table, and Nora even ate a few bites of pork chop, and she NEVER eats much meat. They all practiced their lines they are working on for the dramatic monologues they will be presenting with the Full Circle Players next Sunday. I laughed as Rose recited her poetry along with Maggie's and part of Patrick's!

Tonight is still and dark. I hear the rain in the trees on the ridge. We hope to plant a few things tomorrow, but Thursday is supposed to be sunny so we are looking forward to putting in the rest of the garden then. The milking will be done and the chickens tended. At some point the sheep will be shorn.

I feel like everyday we walk through another stage of grief is making us stronger individuals. Just like the milking and gardening is strengthening our muscles. It isn't very fun. But it is rich.

I didn't understand in my younger days why it is so important to do things you don't want to do. Like get up and milk the cow and make the dinner and sit down to eat it with the kids. But as we communicated and shared around the table tonight, I got a glimpse. SO very grateful for the grace the gave me strength to fry up those pork chops.

Amazing grace.

1 comment:

Jayme said...

Beautiful, Ginger.