We are Unmoored

24 August 2012

I apologize for the silence, but sometimes life requires more living and less documenting.  That has been the case lately with the cycle of life on full display as we laid my grandpa to rest on CT's 1st birthday. 

The full weight of either of these events has not fully sunk in, but it is beginning. 

I would like to say that I am overjoyed at CT's first birthday and in full celebratory mode over the occasion, and I am genuinely happy, but also a little sad.  So much of this last year has been a learning curve.  I had never been a mom before.  I had never not excelled at my job before.  I had never been on such a roller coaster before.  I think my wits survived by the skin of their teeth. 
I wish I knew what I was doing more often so that I could spend more time living in the moment instead of panicking my way through it.  Gosh, it all sounds so dire, doesn't it?  It isn't meant to.  It's just that learning motherhood is difficult.  I used to be really good at the jobs I held (meager as they may have been), and now I was tasked with creating a safe, loving, environment in which my little girl could thrive...and occasionally put on some mascara if I found five minutes where I wasn't overwhelmed or in need of a nap. 

Our little girl is a beautiful spirit and a living and breathing example of the best parts of Jonny and I, with a whole lot of angelic sweetness thrown in on top.  She is delightful, she is playful, she is vibrant, she is giggly, she is cuddly, she is curious, she is adventurous, she is graceful, and I thank God every day that she is ours.  We are so fortunate.  I hope that I can live up to the standard of mother that she deserves, and enjoy our lives as we live them. 

I want to help you to grow as beautiful as God meant you to be when he thought of you first.  
-George MacDonald

I feel that there is no proper segue in the writing of this here, just as there wasn't a proper one in the living of it...but on CT's birthday, we were in Austin for the funeral of Grandpa Mickey. 

While his passing was not a surprise, it was still not something that I was ready for.  He lived a beautiful 88 years, and I do think that he fully enjoyed most of those years.  We should all be so fortunate.  But as my uncle so eloquently said in his eulogy, with my grandpa's passing (nearly nine years after my grandmother-who I used to think the Earth revolved around), we are unmoored. 

We are no longer tethered to our history, our past, or even necessarily our family.  Grandpa was the last link that tied us all together.  That is not to say that these things are no longer available to us.  The family does go on, and our history is written (though many memories lost) for us to read.  However, we are no longer effortlessly cemented to it.  We must work if we want to secure the ties that bind.  But that work is not easy, and without grandma and grandpa to lean on for encouragement, the road ahead as a strong family is that much less certain. 

Since Grandpa's death, I have not felt the sadness that I expected.  I think that will hit me in the weeks ahead.  But I have surely felt unmoored, lost at sea, lonely, and longing for the security of the den at Great Oaks Parkway; Grandpa in his proud wing back chair, and Grandma in her smaller, demure, matching chair, watching the ten o'clock news before bed, and feeling secure in the knowledge that tomorrow morning they would be there, reading the newspaper with coffee before making their carefully measured breakfast, and reading the Upper Room while listening to blue jays rouse the morning to life. 

As I work to create the rituals and tethers that will secure CT to her family in love and warmth, I am inspired by the family that my grandparents created and shepherded, but also struck low with the thought that all we work to build is so fleeting and temporal.

In short...I miss my grandpa.

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