Saturday, December 27, 2008

Lo, I am With You Always

This year, we spent Christmas at my sister's house. She and I cooked Christmas brunch, instead of the traditional dinner.

The wood stove kept us warm, while the snow fell in huge flakes outside. After the meal, we played a very long game of Taboo, laughing the whole time.

We sang Christmas songs while our friend, Mark, played the piano. Mom and I even played a few duets together that she taught me when I was a kid.

We exchanged a few simple gifts around the Christmas tree, which was a large house plant Sarah had put Christmas lights on.

It was such a happy day. And I found that while I thought about Sage and Dad, I was not overcome by sadness as I was on Thanksgiving.

Last night, though, the sadness was like a pressure in my heart, and I was awake until 4:00 in the morning. I spent most of that time doing what I could to push back the pain and avoid facing it. What exhausting and pointless work that is!

This morning, I have come down with a head cold, and I am depleted from lack of sleep, but I feel myself able to let the sadness be here. And there is some release in that.

I don't know if it is a coincident that I feel this way today, the 9-month anniversary of the accident. In 5 more days, Sage will have been gone as long as he was alive. I don't really intend to keep track of these dates. What are they but numbers? But I do find myself aware of them . . . So it is.

This is a photo of last Christmas. Sage is opening one of his gifts, a wooden xylophone, which he was quite interested in chewing on.

When I look at photos of Sage, I still feel so incredulous that he is gone. There is this extraordinary impotence - what in the world can I do? And, the real question - how can I be? How can I be with my experience of Sage, including his death?

Lo, I am with you always.

You promised that,

and when I realized it was true

my soul flared up.

Any unhappiness comes

from forgetting.


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Christmas Blessing

May each one of us
perceive the vision
of love and peace
this season,
and have the trust,
and compassion
to manifest it
throughout the year.

May our thoughts
that obscure
the inherent beauty
be transmuted,
revealing the means
of right relationship.

May we come to know
ourselves with
while turning aside
aggression and fear,
calling forth harmony
and joy for all beings.

-Michael Carpenter

Friday, December 19, 2008

The Snow Light

The Relief Nursery (my work) is closed today due to snow, kicking off our two week winter vacation a little early. We've had alternating snow and sleet and rain all week.

Some mornings everything is covered by a pristine blanket of white. Other mornings the roads are layered with grimy brownish ice. Last night we had a fresh snowfall, so it is beautiful out there.

I am not feeling sad, as this poem might imply, but I really wanted to post it because it is so lovely.

The Snow Light
In the snow light,
In the swan light,
In the white-on-white light
Of a winter storm,
My delight and your delight
Kept each other warm.

The next afternoon
And love gone so soon!—
I met myself alone
In a windless calm,
Silenced at the bone
After the white storm.

What more was to come?
Out from the cocoon,
In the silent room,
Pouring out white light,
Amaryllis bloom
Opened in the night.

The cool petals shone
Like some winter moon
Or shadow of a swan,
Echoing the light
After you were gone
Of our white-on-white.

-May Sarton

Monday, December 15, 2008

Home Sweet Home

Michael and I have decided to buy a house! I can't begin to express how excited we are about this.

The house is perfect. It was built in the 40's. The previous owners remodeled it, adding many unique and beautiful details. It has wood floors, a claw-foot bathtub, a "mother-in-law suite" that my mom might choose to live in, a workshop for Michael, an extra bedroom that I can use for . . . whatever I want (and hopefully someday it will be a child's room).

We will definitely have a house-warming party when we get moved in (which we expect to happen within 30 days or so). Here are some photos:








Saturday, December 6, 2008


I am waiting for the words
I have been unable to say
since that day when I was five years old
and you came into my life.

Being older,
I thought it was my job
to know.
But I never did,
and that felt
like failure.

And you always seemed so
and bright and
Of course I was jealous!

I didn't know how
to hold you.
I didn't know
if I was

And now
we are adults,
and on Thanksgiving morning,
I cry like a child,
and you hold me.
And I wonder what it means
to be a big sister.

I guess it means
saying "I don't know"
when I don't know,
and saying
"I love you,"

Sarah, you are the poet of my heart . . .
All I ever wanted was to know that you were dreaming.
-Fleetwood Mac