I didn’t fancy telling the Internet that my house would be empty for nearly a month, so I took a 95% break from blogging, only stopping in to post the random book review or spilling-over thought.
My intrepid spouse went on a very long, very interesting business trip. Not every woman gets to follow her husband’s moves on the web. So that was different. Since he was gone I decided to take my parents up on their invitation to just stay at their house. We’re usually up there for Christmas; this simply meant not going back home on the 27th but instead staying there.
I have so many thoughts about that trip I don’t know where to begin. Every day was another set of interesting confrontations about who I am as a person, a new revelation as to how I became that person and a new question about how I deal with all of this information. It’s a bit sad, really, when you have to have your 70 year old parents take care of you before you’re 40. I was not angry, per se, but discouraged at the fact that in so many ways I am once again nine years old, having to get a ride from my mom and dad to go out with friends.
I got a glimpse of myself in the mirror one day. On Christmas Eve the Husband and I had gone to Target to get some gifts. I bought myself a chunky-knit scarf in a rainbow of golds and reds and purple. In better days I would have made that myself, but now I part with the sixteen dollars. I wore it all the time, even indoors. Because that’s how you keep the chill out of your neck and shoulders when it’s zero degrees. When I saw myself in the mirror I looked like a cross between a brilliant writer and a crazy cat lady. Then again, all brilliant writers seem to be about one-third crazy cat lady to me anyway. But there I was, looking very much the same way I looked when I was 12 (see picture at right) only a bit heavier and with more gray in my hair.
The whole trip was like that. I am undeniably different, but on another level am very much the same.
I am home now, back to pretending that I am an adult. When we got here the furnace was broken and the pipes were frozen. I felt much the same as Scarlett Hamilton when, after fleeing the conflagrant Atlanta for the peace of Tara she gets home only to find that her mother has died, her father is insane and the household is starving. There is no home to go home to. Instead of vomiting in the sweet potato patch I fixed my own furnace and let my mother and sister take care of my while I tried to breathe. (The arthritis is affecting my ribcage; when I’m cold it is difficult to draw breath.) Once again I was capable and incapable all at the same time.
I’m sure God has lessons in all of this. The frozen pipes are like my life at this point. Stuck in midflow. Here I guess I am now thawing.