I keep thinking about what I was doing a year ago, when my mother hadn't yet died, when the world and love still held her captive inside her broken body. I know wherever she is, she is free, and she understands everything, and I would not ask that she still be here with us, suffering as she was. And yet, I am still experiencing each new day as my first without her, the first Christmas without her, the first January without her, the first brand new year in which she will not be.
I am trying not to let inconsequential things derail me. I fail a lot. I have to talk myself down almost continuously, reminding myself that in fact, everything that truly matters, is more than okay, My daughter is working while on her winter break, as a chef for a therapeutic yoga based treatment center for eating disorders. She feels happily challenged to prepare delicious but healthy and non-triggering menus, and she enjoys the clients, therapists, nutritionists and yoga instructors she's working with, and the fact that the center is a new and still evolving model.
They told her they'd like her to come on board full time when she graduates this May, but I think they still have to work out the details, so I'm not sure what will happen there. My girl also got offered another job with a Fortune 500 company, but she is torn, not wanting to say yes to something she doesn't think she will love just because it will look good on her resume, yet feeling some pressure. The pressure is coming mostly from her program, which puts a high premium in its graduates leaving school with good jobs already secured. Her dad told her to relax and trust that she will know what to do and when to do it.
My son also just got offered yet another promotion at his job. They seem to really appreciate his work ethic and sense of responsibility. He's busy trying to put things in motion for the next phase of his working life, and while I have my opinions about what might serve him as he moves forward, it's not my place to give him advice unless he asks me for it. He's fully grown now. And he seems to be managing just fine.
A group of us celebrated my friend Leslie's birthday with one of our Sunday evening pot lucks, and last night, on her actual birthday, I went out to dinner with her and her son and some friends from her other circle, including a couple who just happens to be my upstairs neighbors. We had a lovely time, as we always do in these intergenerational gatherings. That's a photo of the birthday girl and her man-child, a gifted drummer who's about the graduate with his music degree and whose two bands are playing lots of gigs and doing very well. Leslie and I met when our children were in kindergarten together, and we became enduring friends.
Here's a recent photo of some of our beautiful children with a couple of significant others in the mix. Through the years on this blog, you've seen childhood pictures of most of these young adults, and look at them now—those full-bearded boys! Just more evidence of time trundling on.