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This Day in My History

  Rocky 2
  Dear Wisdom
An Ethel Queen and a Judy Queen

 Mind and Body
2004:  A Hollyl, Jolly Christmas

2005 Christmas Letter

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Really!  It's comfortable!



"A Life in Parentheses"

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Master list of links to (most) videos
by Mefeedia

for the
Alchera Collab

14 December 2005

I remember why it is I don't like roller coasters.  The ride to the top is one of anticipation and there are those who like that stomach-churning feeling you get as you crest the peak and plunge down the steep hill before you start the arduous climb back up again.

Never did like the bloody things, though it's something like the act of writing a feature article or a review--you like the act of having written, but the act of writing is the pits.  On the few occasions when I have been coerced into getting onto those torture machines, I like the act of having ridden a roller coaster.   I don't like actually riding it.

So when we last met our intrepid heroine, she had just found the spirit of Christmas sitting around a piano singing the familiar old songs with a bunch of wonderful singers.

Then she came home to enjoy a sort of day of rest.  The house was clean, things were already just about ready for Christmas (save for buying and decorating a tree), and she could take some time off without guilt (as opposed to the time she takes off with the guilt).

Naturally, I began surfing the net. 

I do the Holidailies each year, which is pretty redundant, since the idea is to encourage people to write an entry a day during the month of December...but I write an entry a day anyway, so no big deal to promise to do it thru December.

But Holidailies are nice because when I look at the other participants, I get introduced to some new journals and get re-introduced to some old favorites that had fallen by the wayside.

Heaven and Woolworths is one of those journals I used to read, but I think she stopped writing it on a regular basis, and I stopped checking.  But she is participating in Holidailies and it's nice to see her back.  God rest ye irritating git is an entry which, as I read it, made me feel like I was climbing up that roller coaster hill, knowing, as I read it what would happen when I reached the top.

It's not until I become irritated trying to re-thread a bauble that I remember he died and was buried at this time of year,

she begins.  It doesn't take much insight to know that if I make it all the way to the end it will be fighting tears.

Damn, this is a frustrating time of year.  Happily singing Christmas carols one day, and then "remembering" the next.  Remembering the people who aren't here, and who should be.

This may be why I had the weird dream that I had last night.  I rarely dream.  Or if I do, I don't remember them.  But occasionally one really sticks in your head.

We were at a going-away party for someone in Walt's office.    It was a very small gathering, just consisting of a few people and Walt's old boss, who hasn't been here in about 20 years, but who remains a friend.  It was held in someone's very small trailer and everyone was outside sitting in lounge chairs, only there weren't enough chairs, so for some reason, I had brought my HUGE recliner and I was settled into the recliner with my back to everyone.

(Antisocial, even in my dreams!)

Anyway, I was sitting there thinking about videoblogging and I decided that I would make a retrospective on Paul's life.

Suddenly, I was reliving his life. I wasn't just remembering how it felt to hold baby Paul in my arms, I was holding baby Paul in my arms, and watching him at various ages in his childhood (I woke up before he got too old).

Oddly enough, while I would think that such a dream, at such a time of year, would upset me, I actually felt kind of warm this morning, like I had a brief visit with baby Paul again last night.

Is Christmas ever going to feel "normal" again?  I always have to stop and count again.  It doesn't feel like I am shopping for enough people.  Then I remember why the count seems off.

I set the table for Christmas morning breakfast or Christmas dinner and it seems like there should be more plates.

There should be more plates, but there aren't.

I love being with the family.  I love watching everyone laugh together and enjoy each other, but I hate that two of them aren't here any more.   And I don't know that anything will ever feel "normal" again.  Part of that, I realize, is that in the time since David and Paul died, Jeri, Ned and Tom have grown older, moved on, become adults, made their own lives.  Things would have changed anyway.

But when David and Paul were here, we were on the edge of that childhood/adulthood world.  Ned was married, of course, but hadn't quite "grown away" as much as he has now.  The rest were all still here.  So intellectually, I know that things wouldn't feel "normal" any more even if Dave and Paul had lived.  But the timing of their deaths makes the difference between Christmas 1995 and Christmas 2005 that much more glaring.




Woodland, CA

Jeri's picture, drawn for our Christmas card in 1972


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