This is Tuesday, so I am joining in the Thankful Tuesday party over at Micha Boyett’s blog, Mama: Monk.
While I kept a list this week of things I was thankful for, it got recycled with the grocery and house to do lists as I was trying to clean the piles of papers vying with the contents of the kitchen cupboards (don’t ask) for space on the dining room table. So last night, as I put aside the editing I was working on and asked Jessie what I should be thankful for, she said “Your friends!” And when I told her, yes, for sure, but I was also trying to keep the focus on these transition years and it would take a full-length book to thank my friends, she said, “You can be thankful that you have a daughter like me!”
And I am! Because even in this mess of growing up, in this mess of driving, problem solving, present buying, sex educating (her me), and money managing, Jessie reminds me that it is all about people. About friends, and lovers, and husbands, and mothers, and spirit cousins who gather in darkened candle-lit rooms to be still and quiet together for half an hour every week. It’s about connectors, and fitness instructors, and old neighbours with new dogs, and strangers who use the “r” word and are then corrected and accept the correction with suitable contrition. It’s about church friends who invite Jessie to sit for a while, and church friends who invite her to work for a while, and church friends who offer to teach cooking and sewing and public speaking when I have lost all patience for any of that.
It’s about mama friends who hug her and love her when I am almost at the end of my patient and thoughtful loving and am running on gut and instinct. It’s about long-time from forever friends who bicycle in sub-zero weather wrapped in layers of wool and Polish-knit sweaters to teach my daughter to sing and want to come back for more. It’s about husbands who vacate basement offices to let mothers work in peace and quiet and without incessant Say-Yes-to-the-Dress whining and drama in the background.
And finally, at the end of a long day, it’s about Jessie who lets me sit beside her as she nestles into her bed, and read her the daily gospel and reflection from my favorite gifted Advent book (God With Us, if you are wondering). And then remembering/telling the beginning of the Godly Play Advent story . . . Advent is the time when we are all (and this is where Jessie gifts me with a long graceful arc of her hand, sweeping, pointing to an imaginary spot in the distance), all on our way to . . . Bethlehem, we singsong together.
Peace on your journey.