Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Turkey Day Without Rosie

It’s the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. I should be at the Reservoir Tavern in Boonton, NJ, yucking it up with old friends but instead, I am in a state of total collapse, recovering from just a part of our pack and move. I am thankful that I had a place to go to collapse.

This is the first Thanksgiving I have ever spent without my mother. True, my trips home for this turkey of a holiday usually had to do with having the opportunity to gather with extended family and friends. But it was, in no small way, a holiday on which my mother always an impact.

As with other families, our immediate family always celebrated Thanksgiving at first my parents house and then, when the house was gone, and my mother moved to the West Coast, at my brother’s. While we were still in New Jersey, the turkey part of the program would consist of decorating a gingerbread house, setting the table, preparing the meal and eating, and revealing what we were most thankful for. After the main meal friends would come from near and far (mostly near), and bring dessert. There were a few colorful years where the celebration would start out just fine, and then my mother would have some kind of a ‘pause’ and we would end up at the hospital. I guess she figured since we were all together it was a perfect time to get sick – that way we wouldn’t have to travel to wherever she was for whatever the emergency.

After mom moved to Seattle we decided to celebrate Thanksgiving a week or two early and thus avoid travel and shopping problems. It was wonderful, except that it was too difficult for Seth and Joyce to make the trip, and of course, they were missed. We also missed the multitude of desserts brought by friends, but not as much as we missed the kids. Then on the actual day, Jordan and I (David if he was around) would go and sit at the bar at the York Grill, and have a great multi-course meal (also at the bar), and wander home for a good nap. Not bad, just not the same.
last year in Seattle
It’s amazing, without Mom around, how much I miss my kids, my brother and sister-in-law, my niece and my aunt Irene. It’s funny how, when you absolutely can’t celebrate the way you always did, how much you feel the absence of what was – even if it wasn’t always pleasant. It’s amazing how, when things change – that you didn’t want to change--how helpless you feel to do anything about the new circumstances.

Uh oh, is this turning into another giant whine – another “oh poor me.” No it is not. I am thankful for all my friends, old and new. Family, old and new. Life style, old and new. And new career – too long in coming. As I said, I am thankful for having friends and family who are there to support our efforts – no matter how half assed or ridiculous. And I am thankful to be able to enjoy all my children’s successes and even recovery from, what they consider failures. I never think what they do is a failure—just another learning experience…. And for the ability to believe that my children can never fail, I will be for ever grateful to my mom and dad. We’re just sayin’… Iris
Thanksgiving 2005: Seth,Joyce,Jeff; DB,Rose,Iris

1 comment:

Jay Carey said...

Iris, I sense no whining here-just a "ubiquity" (love that word) of feelings of love for your family and that god-awful ever-changingness (a Palin word) in our lives. You've said it well-no joke.