written last week. and tucked away.
thinking i'll post it tonight - so my mother can take my thoughts with her to fernwood tomorrow.
the grief surprises me sometimes. but as soon as the ache begins – i remember it. i shake my head, bury my head in my hands and take a deep breath. i’ve felt the familiar for a few days now. a heavy quiet - sitting right on my heart. i expected it to come with the putting up of lights, the sipping of hot drinks, of mittens and boots.
i didn’t make the trip this year. my yearly trek over the mountains. for a 9thand 9th shopping trip and christmas card making with my mother. for lots of reasons, really - i’m not there this time. am wishing for it, tonight.
we started our tradition when lucas was a babe. two thousand and seven. i met briana then. at carlucci's bakery. in the back corner table. cath couldn't wait to share her with me. she sipped hot tea and chatted birth and life for an hour or so. the next year was the 'change is coming' house meeting. we exchanged gifts at the salt lake city library. two thousand and nine was a blackwelder booth at the beehive bazaar with in + out burgers after.
last year on these days – i was in that city with my three dearest friends. i’d imagined that we’d have a free night to huddle together at briana’s. that she’d teach us how to make homemade marshmallows and i’d get to share her space with the holiday trimmings up. we didn’t try very hard to make it happen – other adventures came up and instead of an entire night in her company we got a quick hello as she hurried out the door with my mother on their way to a holiday gift exchange.
a few days later after my friends had gone home to their families – baby charlie and i headed out for The Children’s Hour with my mom in her li’l red mini. bri wanted to meet up with us. to share hot drinks. to snuggle charlie. to catch up for a minute before i headed back to washington. we kept being in just the wrong place at just the wrong time. we kept missing a meet-in-middle. and i wasn’t trying very hard to make it happen, either. i was feeling selfish and wanted my mom to myself - and so it didn’t.
i love looking back in retrospect. to see things for how they were then and how they are now.
i am wishing for a different story tonight. am wishing i was looking back at homemade marshmallows and good music. at tea shared on 9th in mugs with mittens.
tonight the grief came with the words to winter song.
…that you’re not where you belong... inside my arms.
am wishing that she was with the people she belonged to tonight.
am wishing that she was with candice. that they’d trimmed that tree together.
that she was with cath tonight. while chuck’s out of town. giggling and tincture sharing. up so late.
am wishing she was with tess and that chubby baby. knitting him some first christmas gifts and making felt birds together.
am wishing she was with rachel and that belly.
and i guess that maybe… she is.