Upcoming Events -- email for sign-in links
April 28, 6:30pm. Florence Poets' Society Event, Zoom and Facebook Live.
May 6, featured reader at virtual meeting of the Mid Hudson chapter of the Bereaved Parents of the USA.
May 26, featured reader at Eileen Kennedy's book launch.
June 10, 6pm. The Poetry Ritual led by Michael Goldman.
September 7, 7pm. Straw Dog Writers' Guild, Writers' Night In (or Out? TBD.) Lanette will be the featured reader.
September 20, save the date. Book Publication Launch on the 5th Anniversary of Kyle's death.
Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Happy Holidays from the Upside Down
I am mostly doing really well, honestly, but this past Saturday night I cried until mascara made black half-moons under my eyes while Renee and I walked our dog. (Renee gets bonus points for acting unembarrassed by my sobbing on Rt. 116 as I picked up Lola’s poop.) I’d held myself together for Thanksgiving, but two days later the realization hit me: No matter how much gratitude I practice nor how many new traditions I embrace, I will always have a giant hole in every single special day in my life, forever. Understanding I was permanently damaged just made me cry.
Having to act normal, let alone festive, when the day had that huge hollow center was exhausting. (In fact, I threw up Thanksgiving evening before the first guests left and several more times since then, which is a bummer, as I thought I had my mysterious cyclic vomiting thing licked, but more on that another time.)
Holidays and other special occasions when Kyle and I would always have been in touch, if not together, make the hole he left yawn even bigger.
I do know that a form of this grief is universal at the holidays, even when we aren’t mourning – because holidays are often a reminder of how our families are seldom quite what we want them to be. The gap between our hopes and our realities can be vast, particularly if we’re aiming for a perfect Hallmark holiday free of criticism and disappointment. Divorce, mentally ill family members, not having the money to buy the presents our kids want, all of these can create their own holes. Even in the best years, when everyone I loved was gathered in my warm and cozy house cooking and laughing together. there were still tensions and squabbles, judgments and tears.
Much as I hate it, I am even learning to accept the hole. I don’t expect ever to feel grateful for it -- but I am grateful for the love that dug it, and for all the love that pulls me out of it every day.
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