Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Summer

It makes sense that I stopped writing around the time my father-in-law fell and broke his hip at the beginning of the summer.  Today my kids both went back to school, and since three of us were up off and on all night with food poisoning (that was great timing!), I took the day off to recoup.  Part of that for me is relaunching this blog.

Our summer ended up being about two things.  A house in the woods we purchased as an investment property and the quick decline and eventual passing of my husband's father.  My children did not take a single class or swim lesson.  They saw a small smattering of their school friends but plenty of family.  I don't think either of them would say that their summer was bad.  In fact, by looking through the photos I faithfully took, I think they will remember the summer of 2012 as being about adventures in the woods and day after day after week after week spent with their huge extended family.

As my father-in-law declined, his children came to visit.  Our house became 'home base' for the comings-and-goings, something I was thrilled to be able to offer.  I adore my husband's family and loved knowing that they were around so much, despite the difficult circumstances. 

There are countless untold moments of crying, of laughing, of arguments, of whispered conversations to the side, of incomprehensible ramblings of a man standing on the doorway between this life and the next.  I wish I had written them all down.

Though then again maybe I don't.  Though this summer seemed like a blur, a whizzing past of faces that look just like my husband's mixed with the scent of wild desert sage and blackberry milkshakes, it also seemed like the longest summer I've experienced in years.  The purchase of the house was finalized the same week as the onset of my father-in-law's illness, and this week feels like ages ago.  For once, in a scurry of activity, life slowed down all on its own.  The things my family experienced this summer are seared into our memories, no need for a catalog of images on this blog.

We also got the renter set up in the house in the woods the same week of my father-in-law's funeral.  This tied up the summer.  I know I haven't taken the time  needed to grieve this passing.  There hasn't been time with all the hosting of family.  But as the days grow shorter and the rains begin and my kids go to bed again at a reasonable hour, I am hoping for time to say goodbye to my favorite old man, a man who was already old when I met him ten years ago.  He was one of my best friends, and I know his absence is going to make itself known as I read books I want to share with him and can't.

Oh Ed, oh Ed, oh Ed, what are you doing now?  I think of you every day.

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