Thursday, January 1, 2015

A happy and prosperous 2015

My brother sent that image to me last night. "Recognize anyone?" he messaged. He and I are the two children in the lower left forefront of the photo. He was five and I was three. I wasn't in school yet but was visiting his class for the day. I have to say, I do look kind of ready. I wasn't one of those children who entered kindergarten crying. My mother tells my that I was the one who went up to the crying children and patted their arm, telling them it would be okay.

My brother has been mostly bedridden for the past week. He wrenched his back "doing nothing at all" he told me. This meant he was home on New Year's eve with our mother. He texted me at midnight. "She was sleeping but I kissed her anyway." She is not doing so well. Her body is painful and arthritic and uncomfortable to be in now. It does not do her bidding. Swallowing is difficult. Her reality is fluid. This is the hardest stage.

While our children went to various festivities in the city with friends, my husband and I brought in the new year with six dear souls. We sat around a table and dined on delicious adobe chicken and other dishes contributed by our group. The talk was easy and ranged everywhere, as it does, and ten minutes before midnight we decamped to the living room to watch the ball drop in Times Square. I had none of the angst that usually accompanies this night (though I did worry about what the year might bring for my mom). Could it be that I have finally released my expectations around New Year's Eve? Then again, it may be that I was with such a congenial crew, sipping Prosecco and dissecting the problems of the world yet managing to find much to laugh about. I love these people and was happy to usher in 2015 in their company.

Tonight, we'll see them again. We're getting together for a now-traditional New Year's day intergenerational dinner with our children and several others. "We gave our children each other," my friend Isabella and I decided last night. "And they gave us each other, too."


  1. Children do make families, don't they?
    You know what, dear woman? You look exactly the same as you did when you were that precious little girl. I would have been able to pick you out anywhere.
    Happy New Year, darling. Happy New Year.

  2. Hee hee. What Ms. Moon said. You haven't changed a bit!

    Sorry to hear about your mom. This is such a hard time. Knowing it is time for her to leave her body but not want it to actually happen, ever.

  3. I wish you and your family a happy and healthy New Year!

  4. I agree with Ms. Moon -- you are YOU! Happy New Year, dear Angella. I will wish for peace in the new year for your mother, in whatever form that takes.

  5. Sounds like a terrific way to spend New Year's Eve. That's a great photo! I can totally imagine you providing comfort to all the other troubled kids. Not only are you the same in appearance today, as Ms Moon pointed out, you're the same in character. Kind and supportive to the end!

  6. I picked you out immediately. Happy New Year! I hope you have many opportunities to celebrate and ponder.

  7. What a beautiful gift.

    I knew that was you! Your compassionate eyes, seeing the best in others.

    I'm not much for NYE. But I'm glad you had a happy one.

  8. You were such an adorable kid...and you grew into a wonderful woman I wish I could meet in person. Happy New Year.