Friday, December 31, 2010

For Auld Lang Syne...

With the ending of another year we often find ourselves steeped in tradition, grief and maybe even a little bit of booze.

The traditions...special meals, sharing of resolutions or memories of the year before, attending First Nights and other events are ways people ring in the New Year as the Old Year shuffles out.  No matter what religion you are we all seem to agree on the calendar.  We have managed to come together on this one...yep, December 31st is New Year's Eve and January 1st is New Year's Day.....AGREED! 

The grieving.  The year passes with some of our resolutions quickly forgotten before the confeitti had even been swept up from the last celebration.  I have often never shed the pounds promised with the ball's dropping.  I guess you could say another ball dropped there too.  I have often thought another year wasted.  And for what?  A smaller waistline or a smaller dress size?  I guess I forgot that I was able to spend time with the kids, with my husband, with family or just doing something for myself.  But those calories weren't counted and I set myself up for a perceived failure.

With a New Year we also mourn for more than resolutions quickly forgotten.  We mourn the losses that we have faced.  Some significant as when a loved one is taken from us whether too quickly or after a long illness.  We mourn their loss and feel the sorrow from the hole that it leaves with us.  We mourn some things that were never ours.  We mourn for the what if's, the could have been's and the never were's.  We mourn what we wanted and never got while sometimes taking for granted the blessings we were afforded.  It isn't selfish on our part.  We are human and creatures of higher thought...but it is the heart that we find more mystical than the mind and that heart is a kicker.  It feels things often when our higher logic says it is absurd.  We feel it real and we feel it deeply.  It is a permitted hurt that we can own.  It is ours.

This New Year's I plan not to let the mourning out shine the blessings that I have yet to come.  I won't mourn the what if's, the could have been's and the never were's.  Instead, I will plan for some more what if's, the could be's and the yet to come's!!!  After all, I'm a sucker for the underdog!

Oh, and in case you were wondering.  I am having a couple of Cosmos this evening....there is a little bit of booze in my future too!

Friday, December 17, 2010

On being sorry...

If only forgiveness was as easy as the act of saying that you are sorry.  We throw the phrase "I'm sorry" around a lot and as easily as a greeting to a friend on the street.  There are times when it is clear that we don't always share in the meaning of this 2-word pharse.

I'm sorry can start a conversation...

I'm sorry that I....
I'm sorry that you....(one of my favorites.  Can I have passive agressiveness for $200, please Mr. Trebek?)
I'm sorry for your loss...

It can also end a conversation....
I have to go, I'm sorry.
It's me, not you, I'm sorry.

It can cut and heal with the same gesture.  I'm sorry.  These 2 little words that we yearn for can be hollow and insincere.  Maybe it is time we use another phrase.  Give something away with more power.

Perhaps starting with "I was wrong" would go further in mending the fences damaged badly and never repaired with "I'm sorry".  Or better yet, we could stop causing pain to our fellow man.  Just would be nice.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Dear Christmas Letter Recipient,

Dear Friends and Family,

Wow!  Where did the year go?  Seems like yesterday when we were all ringing in the New Year and here it is the holidays all over again.  I hope that this letter finds you all well and enjoying all that the season can bring.

We thought that we would give you the updates on all the kids.  Boy they are something!  Our oldest, Bobby has been accepted to college (finally).  We never thought he would move out!  He doesn't go until fall but Bob Sr. and I have been packing his bags since last June.  He'll be 35 this year and as you know that is always a year full of wonder and change.

Stella, our beautiful girl Stella.  She's doing great.  She's still with the bank.  She's been promoted (again)!  We couldn't be more proud of her.  She's truly the apple of our eye.  Stella recently introduced us to her new roommate.  Her name is Maureen.  She's a handsome woman.  She is a personal trainer and does a lot of repairs around the condo.  I just wish Stella would meet a nice boy and give us those grandkids that we have been wanting.  It seems the girls are best friends.  They said that they were commited to their partnership.  We thought, isn't that sweet.  They even got matching commitment rings.  You know kids, so into showing their feelings.

Our youngest, Tommy.  He's still in rehab.  The doctor's say that he has to want to get clean.  It is beyond Bob Sr. and I why he would drink all the time.  We gave him such a good life at home.  We simply will not speak of it anymore.  We are above that.  We will just go on as normal.

That brings us to Bob and I.  We are enjoying retirement altough perhaps we have spent a lot more time together now than in our 40 years of marriage.  It has been interesting.  The first few months were splendid.  We saw the Grand Canyon and even went camping with the Snyders!  But then came the quiet of being together.  We have nothing in common and he's always around.  I've asked him to get a hobby.  He plays poker now.  Started 1 day a week but he's up to 3 days a week and is gone all hours of the day and night.  I truly don't mind as I get all that needs to be done here.  I've even hired a nice young man to do chores around the house.  What a nice young man.  He tends to my every need.  I've never been happier and I can tell people are really noticing the change in me.  I've taken up tennis again too.  My instructor is a god.

I hope you are all as blessed as we are.  We are living the life that we want you to see.  Please don't scratch the surface....I'm pretty sure we'd crack.

Merry Christmas!
The American Family