Sunday, December 17, 2023

Guests are coming and the house is a mess

with unwrapped presents piled on the dining room table, a stack of lovely Christmas cards from family and friends strewn all over the counter. Which reminds me, if I want to send out cards, I'd better get on it. Or is it too late? Time moves along in weird bursts, so that one minute it is August

and suddenly, we are heading toward Thanksgiving, and Boom

Thanksgiving is in the rearview mirror. Maybe it's the weather. Too mild and creepily sunny for Ohio and how is it December? I build a holiday playlist to get in the proper mood, the Charlie Brown Christmas and the Judy Garland song that makes me want to cry about how someday soon we all will be together, 

and I want to believe this, but what does "soon" mean in this new reality of mine with the weird time bursts? Yesterday, when I was looking for where I stored the Christmas cards, I stumbled on old family photos and went down that rabbit hole for a couple of hours, the kids at various ages posing in front of various Christmas trees, a cat we once had, a dog, people we love, loved, but now they are gone from us. 

A first year without them. A fifth year. A fiftieth. We had no time at all with them. We had all the time in the world. What I want 

is to pin time down and pin myself in it. All of my loved ones in one place, but in every time and with every cat and dog. Until then, Judy Garland says we will have to muddle through somehow. But enough with that sad song.

This year I am amending what I want, starting today as I clear off the dining room table and wrap the presents. Send out the Christmas cards. Clean up the messy house to make room for the people who are traveling to see us. Have faith that we can check in on the ones who are celebrating elsewhere.  

Here and now is all we have and I can't bear to miss a moment of it. 

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