According to Little Brother, whatever one is doing on New Year’s Eve is what one will spend a lot of time doing for the next year. I was with friends, remembering the past, watching children play. Not bad!
On New Year’s Day, I started the drive back east. I had a feeling the return trip would be harder than the outbound…the Korean acupuncturist kept emphasizing my tendency toward melancholy, because I’m “so sensitive.” I’m feeling it. My friends saw it too, thinking I looked tired. Not physically, no, but emotionally and spiritually. “It shows.” I know. But I think it’s temporary, fallout from the return to family (after 13 years no less) and the stark evidence of socialization. There’s no doubt where my “stuff” originates. :-/
At the same time, the warm embrace and unconditional acceptance is, I guess, the hallmark of true family ties. So Dad and Christi’s reluctance to see me go means a lot. Frances also gave me a hard time for staying such a short time and not seeing more people. Maybe next time, with more planning. I certainly miss the teasing: “You drive like an old lady!” We’ve all grown up a bit, eh? 🙂
One of the sweetest moments was when Madison “made” me. In code at the bottom of my portrait she wrote, “I love Stephanie.”
Meanwhile, I listened to the end of Prodigal Summer: “Every choice is a world made new for the chosen.” My nephews and Ruth questioned the noise made by the Apache burden basket hanging from my rear view mirror. Mom sent it for Xmas – for its symbolism, of course. S.E. noticed it, commenting on its small size, then saying the burdens could just slip right on through the mesh. The tinkling is a bit much at times, but it has served to pull my mind back into the task of driving a few different times when my consciousness went too far away. At the end of this journey I’ll take it down. If I’m lucky, it will have served its purpose.
I keep thinking of a moment that occurred at the end of an interpreting job a few weeks ago. It was a reorganization of institutional structure that required someone giving up a position they’d held for many years and moving into a new role. The event was informational for staff, and also somewhat celebratory of the transition. It just so happened that I was among the very last to leave – Deaf folk tending to linger as they do. As we walked out the door, the person whose job was officially over offered us food, which we declined. She looked around the empty room and said, “That’s the end of it.”
Jay, responding to a “Hon-dah” from Grandmother S.E., writes about the New Year that it is “truth that keeps things rolling.” Yes. I add: the deepest truths are those we create together.
Here’s to new creations, not severed from the past but integrating its lessons and moving on toward whatever calls us – peace, love, beauty.