Saturday, October 23, 2010

Another Trip Around the Sun

Our family room, 7:23 a.m. this morning.
 Playing on The Husband's laptop as I start this post: "(Love Is) Thicker Than Water" by Andy Gibb.  Prior to that, Neil Sedaka's "Calendar Girl."

It's like a 60s and 70s flashback weekend here in my kitchen at 7:15 a.m., a morning that finds me blogging after being awake most of the night.  The culprit was a too-late afternoon coffee (damn you, Starbucks Iced VIA!), resulting in cascading thoughts as the hours ticked on.

In the pre-dawn light of the guest room, I look at what are over a dozen scrapbooking boxes containing printed papers and photos - and worry that I will never finish all of this (one of my fears is that I will die without my kids' childhood's undocumented), consider whether I should start a Scrapbooking Saturday sort of feature on the blog to hold me accountable, decide that I don't want another "project," think that if I cut down on the blogging and the reading I might get some of the scrapbooking done.  I don't want to do that - cut down on anything - except for the clutter in the house, which has been bothering me lately. 

I've been making a concerted effort with this lifelong albatross of mine this week. A third of the den is semi-straightened up; a pile of magazines, headed to the great recycling bin in the sky with my guilt of not finding a more deserving, worthy home for them.  Gone yesterday were several Child magazines (is that even still published?), some of the more recent additions, back when I still held to the fantasy that my version of motherhood would resemble that portrayed in the glossy pages.   I feel guilty about tossing the magazines in the recycling - I paid good money for these words of wisdom from parenting experts and Oprah and people promising to make my life Real Simple.

A friend's news in the evening just past conjures up ghosts and acronyms long buried; I wake up to the news that a jeweler in my transformed childhood neighborhood was fatally shot, and even though I didn't know him, I mourn him because I know I walked past his store countless times en route home to my still-best friend C.'s house after a long day of 4th grade, back when two 10 year old girls could safely walk up Rising Sun Avenue in Northeast Philly.

My parents, who would have been married exactly 45 years today, went to the same high school with the jeweler, who stayed in the neighborhood out of loyalty to his longtime customers who "needed his services."  Alphabetically, he was a student or two behind my mother's maiden name. Maybe a widow would need a watch repaired, he is quoted in the paper as telling his insurance agent.

Later on today we will go to my in-laws' annual Halloween party for the grandchildren. It feels impossible that a year has passed because we were just there a week ago for the same event. I sit here in the family room, watching the sun make its pattern on the wall, a morning show that you can watch this in real-time as it happens. I'm normally not awake at this hour to notice it and when I am, I forget to watch.

Today, I watch. 

Our family room, 7:45 a.m. this morning.

"Another run around the sun,
Look at the things we've seen.
What have we both become?
What have we dreamed?
Who have we lost?
And what have we won?"

Ben Taylor, "Digest"

copyright 2010, Melissa (Betty and Boo's Mommy, The Betty and Boo Chronicles) If you are reading this on a blog or website other than The Betty and Boo Chronicles or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

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