I apologize for being a bit absent lately. We are trucking along here with the sewing, crafting, and schooling, but my thoughts have been directed away from my usual documentation.
Smootch has graciously agreed to model two hospital gowns I spent a portion of the weekend making for the young daughter of crafty friend. Both gowns were upcycled from adult garments, previously worn soft and comfortable, using this free pattern.
My friend and I have sewing and crafts in common, but our connection was forged when we realized we our daughter's both bare the distinctive mark of heart made so pure that it almost broke its fallible human encasement.
Tomorrow my friend's daughter once again will have her strength and determination tested as a surgeon does the necessary work of performing miracles. I wish I could go and physically shoulder some of the burden, but, of course, if we could do such a divine thing for another human, I would be only one in a very long line of people more than willing to take up the task, with her mother being right in front of the line.
We can not live each others lives. But we can lay strong foundations to help support the load and we can warmly wrap one another with the work from our hands and hearts.
We've recently been carried along by a tidal wave of crisis. Today Smootch and I traveled eight hours to attend the funeral of a much loved teacher, wife and mother of three children, while my grandfather went in for a necessary but long time coming surgery on his hip.
Loss is our theme of the week. Tonight, even, after the alternating agony of waiting and then the deep pain of watching, helplessly, another's suffering, we turn to a brand new book in our ongoing bedtime comforts and find that old Jack has died and scarlet fever has taken Mary's sight forever. Laura Ingalls Wilder's writing is of such simple beauty that her words reach across more than a century and a half to seriously move the world of my little girl. Smootch feels the adventures and sorrows of the Ingalls family as sharply as she does her own family. It was with these first two chapters that she finally comprehended in the root of her being that some things can not be fixed and that a spirit can be knocked loose from it's mortal home and set free to who knows where.
I feel overwhelmed by loss. My own and others. I do not read the news because I can not get through a day knowing how much suffering there is, how can we just sit here drinking coffee when all of this stuff, this horror! is happening, and I get radical and depressed and burn myself dry.
No news for me. Not if I am going to do what I need to do right here, now.
Lately, though, perhaps with being a periphery witness to battles not my own, I have caught a glimpse of another perspective to the Problem of Life. Despite all the suffering, the frailty of the human body, the trauma done by careless accident and, much worse, evil intent, our words, our hearts, our love continues to guide our way as we do the work of raising our families and helping each other out. All the shit that could be slung has landed point zero on our vulnerable species, and yet there is so much to be thankful for.
On Thursday we will make the first leg of another long car ride to witness the wedding of a couple of people I don't know. The Man has a cousin, who I have failed to get to know at the few family functions we have both actually attended, and he has fallen in love with some woman I only know as a name on a cream coloured paper invitation. I am one who has often viewed weddings as a burden, particularly those of extended, unknown, family, but this wedding I am looking forward to. I am so up for a celebration of devotion and love. I will take my children and The Man and we are going to cry happy tears at their union, and then we are going to eat and dance and party to the shared beating of hearts. While I'm at it, I will try to get to know a few more of these people The Man calls cousins and aunties and uncles, and try to add my brick to their foundations. There is, I suspect, a lot of good to be found. It is inevitable that we will someday need to call upon our family and community to help hold us up in a storm and it is true that one day we will also depart, no matter how hard we resist. The only way to survive the ultimate storm is through love.
You have our love M and S tomorrow and beyond. Our thoughts are with you.