Sunday, November 27, 2011

Dear Santa.........

I spent the weekend after Thanksgiving attending the 90th birthday party of my husbands cousin.  Beautiful by any standard, her smile lit up the room as she moved gracefully from person to person acknowledging their presence and the memories they brought to the table.  She reminded me of our last conversation which took place over four years ago.  I had forgotten, but her words brought it all back.  The other cousins were there....all in their 70's, 80's and 90's.   One just returned from a trip to Scandinavia, another is planning a bicycle tour in Europe and the oldest by far is 92 years young and always has a warm hug, big smile and asks immediately about my mother, my life in New Hampshire and how are those college students treating me?
I get bogged down in the little picture far too often.  I visit my mother and only see the woman she isn't.  The blank stares when I hold her hand, her loss of conversation and the clear forgetting of holidays.  Meanwhile, the staff adore her and care for her in ways I cannot.  She seems content and is in reasonably good physical health.  The staff interact with her as though she was a full participant.  They tell jokes, sing songs and even do a mean turkey strut across the room.  This is the big picture.  I was reminded of it this weekend at Cousin Nancy's party.  Life moves forward, just not always the way I imagined it would be.  I'd like to ask Santa this year for "one more day"...lunch perhaps with my mom and my dad....just for old times sake and to get a few things off my chest.  That'd be tough even for Santa, so I will be satisfied with appreciating the "big picture" more and letting go little by little of the sadness that the "little picture" brings me.