Thanksgiving thoughts

Craig's sister and brother flew in to join us for Thanksgiving this year. It was my first year hosting Thanksgiving. Of course, I've always cooked at least part of the meal and last year I planned it with my SIL and aunt although due to the circumstances it was very low key. But this year, it was my thing. It made me feel like a real grown up.

I stared preparing early by starting a fall cleaning. I wasn't planning anything really major but I did want to go room by room to clean those areas I never get around to - cleaning the kitchen sink cabinet, dusting the bathroom (I never think to get the bathroom when I'm dusting but our house is dusty and it needs it) and that sort of thing. The kitchen cleaning went really well. I felt so accomplished that I jumped right into the bathroom jobs the next day. My cleaning mojo was a bit damped when 30 minutes after I finished , Lucy started throwing up and I spent the next 48 hrs with a feverish kid. The end result was a bathroom dirtier than before I cleaned. Things didn't exactly get easier the rest of the week and last week at least one of the four of us sick every day.

We managed to get things relatively clean but by Thursday my energy reserve was up and I was not feeling good. Craig took Lucy to pick up Chad and Steph and Jonah and I napped. Since they didn't come in until Thursday afternoon, we had our big Thanksgiving feast on Friday. I took lots of breaks but everyone pitched in and we had a nice meal.

I think half of my illness was due to catching Craig and Lucy's cold and the other half was emotional. For those of you who don't know, this weekend is the one year anniversary of my mom's death. She died the Saturday after Thanksgiving last year so even though the dates aren't the same, I was pretty sure Saturday would be the worst. It ended up being the best day of the weekend - mostly because we headed out to the mall and did some shopping. Not that it didn't have it's moments. I made a last ditch attempt to get a certain American Girl item that is sold out online (and yes, the store did have it!) but being there was sad. AG was such a big part of my childhood and I know if my mom was around this year, she would have been there picking stuff out with me. And holding Jonah. And playing with Lucy. And helping me salvages the pie crusts (I can make good tasting pies but my pie crusts are the ugliest things you've ever seen).

But getting out of the house was nice. The rest of the weekend, I was really tired and felt like being "alone" a lot so Jonah and I hung out in my room, nursing and cuddling. A baby is a nice balm to the soul. I did try and share him with the others some too though. Hopefully everyone forgives my  party pooper attitude because I'm really glad we had guests. I don't think it would have felt very festival at all without them and Lucy certainly enjoyed the extra attention. And overall the weekend was better than I was expecting.

Actually, I guess the same thing could be said about the past year. When she passed away, I kept telling myself that it was the worst. We'd been fighting her cancer for 18 months and while there were many wonderful moments in that time, it was also 18 months of sorrow and grieving so I just kept thinking that every day after she passed away would be easier than the last. It wasn't true at all - but it kept me going. That first week was a blur and I didn't have much feeling at all. And to be honest, I spent most of the last holiday season in a fog, just going through the motions. And then it was okay for a day, bad for a good, bad the next...repeat. But overall, I've been okay. I'm not sure if that is because I did so much grieving before hand or because God is good and will only give me as much emotion as I can deal with while also being functional as a mother. Sometimes I worry that I've only gotten through this year by just shutting out my feelings and memories of her but I don't really think that's true. It was hard at first because most of the memories I seemed to have were the recent ones and those weren't the ones I wanted but now that more time has passed, I'm able to remember more than just the struggle with cancer. I've moved from that raw grief and anger/frustration and the situation, and God as well, to just missing her. But I like missing her, mostly because the parts I miss are the good parts, not the cancer parts. I miss the conversations and phone calls every day, the advice, the shared experiences, her teaching me...the friendship. And I always will.

1 comment :

  1. You are a beautiful tribute to your mom, MacKenzie. Thanks for sharing your heart.