Friday, June 27, 2014

Sixteen Days Later

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Poor Me

Pat & I were going to go to shul, so I could say The Mourner's Kaddish publicly, but the service tonight honors LGBT Pride, so as I posted in a Facebook status update earlier, I opted out, thinking it would feel more festive than I felt. Instead, we finished binge-watching Derek, a superbly poignant series about an autistic man who works in a home for the aged.

Here are the last books my mom ever read or considered reading with her book group:

Here are the books I've taken out of the library since her death:

The two best book recommendations my mom ever made to me were The Crock of Gold and Cutting for Stone. The first novel was about magic and love and the second, about yearning and grief, and living through both.

That's where I am now -- grateful for the magical parts of my life and for all of the love I experience and express, but living through yearning for, and grief around, my mother (z"l).

I wish I could check out of real-life till I finish reading all seven of the books I listed above, if not also the ones from my mother's book group list (though I don't want to re-read *The Canterbury Tales*).

Suddenly, I was jealous of my age when my dad died -- 17 -- as I thought about how many fewer responsibilities I had then, but that's not really true. I had to continue showing up to high school and had to do well enough to get to go to college. I also forgot to consider how love-lorn I was as well; I had a secret girlfriend then, who was already a freshman at a too-far-away college, and I knew my attachment wasn't requited, not really.

So compared to when my dad died in November of '82, I didn't have love or meaningful work then, but I also didn't have to settle my parent's estate, like my sisters and I do now, now that we're the only adults left in the upper-part of the chain. My other responsibilities, to Pat and our kitties Phoebe and Toonces, and to my management and the team I manage at work, and are more welcome than not at this time. I can always renew the library books....

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