I've been mostly inside my snow globe of a house peering out at the winter white landscape, but yesterday I had errand after errand to run, and a breakfast meeting and an afternoon one, with an appointment with my lovely doctor in between them for good measure, and when I finally made my way back home, I exhaled deeply and realized how much physical energy it takes just to brace yourself against the below freezing cold.
Yesterday was my mom's birthday. She is 92. We talked several times throughout the day, but when I tried to settle on a recent photo of her to post here, they all made me sad, so very fragile she is now, or rather they didn't do justice to the spirit I still see in her, so I didn't end up posting a photo yesterday, but maybe I'll find one today that speaks to something essential and true in this slow decline that is aging. Or maybe I'll just leave it at this one of her and my children soon after my daughter was born. This was almost twenty years ago now. It shows something essential and true of why my children feel so connected to their grandmother to this day.
My son is back in the gym and his humor has improved accordingly. He and his dad work out together some evenings. When they get back from the gym, they call to me, "Your studly men are home!" I know I should go work out with them, lift some iron of my own.
While I was in Jamaica, I ordered business cards for myself. I described myself as a "Writer, Editor, Book Coach." The cards are beautiful, and should have arrived by now. When I went to check, there was a note that said there was a problem of some sort with delivery. I haven't yet called to find out what that's about. I'm deciding not to see it as a sign.
Above is a photograph of my cousins David and Paul, the younger two of Uncle Roy's sons and the cousins I grew up closest to of his four children. I found the photo this week; it was taken at their older sister's wedding just before I left Jamaica to go to college in New York. They are such tender boys in this photo. Now we are all middle-aged and yet when I look at them, I still see the spirit of these tender boys. It was so wonderful to spend time with them again when I was in Jamaica earlier this month. The bonds you make in a shared childhood can sometimes outlast decades of no contact. I cannot even begin to express how grateful I am for that. Here's another photo from that day, this one of my Uncle Roy with my cousin Anne.
It's snowing a bit again and very gray outdoors. Maybe I will stay in bed and watch Nashville on Netflix; it's a perfectly diverting soap opera, no heavy lifting required. Maybe I will watch season 2 of House of Cards (is it out yet?). Maybe I will watch that new documentary Mitt about the Republican candidate's 2012 campaign. There's a lot of talk on Twitter about it. Some people say it makes the man almost likable. I'm curious to see it.
My son is taking one of his hour-long baths with his Jambox playing Mumford and Sons and other artists from the bathroom. He is intermittently singing along. I love hearing his music in the reaches of our house. I feel more plugged in to the world somehow.