Sunday, November 3, 2013


About a week ago, I parked in the local high school parking lot and walked out to the football field to pick up my son who was wrapping up an evening of football practice.

As I walked that warm, early-fall evening, I felt a sense of relief.  My son's football season was a wonderful experience.  I saw and chatted with a couple other "Football Moms" who have been very nice and welcoming and great sources of information on the area.

I thought about my new job and how much I love being back at work and interacting with other adults all day.  The job, so far, has been nothing but positive.  No "type A" people.  The school is located out on a beautiful prairie.  And I love being around kids.

I thought about my new house.  Sometimes, I have a tiny bit of buyer's remorse.  Maybe we should've tried to find a larger house.  Maybe we should've found one with a bigger back yard.  Maybe we should've gone further into the country.  But mostly I'm still in love with this house and all the possibilities it provides me to "make it my own" in the days, weeks, months and years to come.

And that night I recognized a feeling that had been gone for a very, very long time.  Contentment.  The kids are making friends and doing well in school and activities.  My husband is happy in his work - though he travels overseas an awful lot.  And I have stopped having to worry about everything and can look forward to life once again.

The walk out to the football field isn't that far, but that evening it was the place where I came to an awesome realization that took me light years from where I had been not all that long ago.

I will be okay.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The Five-Year-Old Sweater

I have been knitting a sweater since 2008.  It isn't a very fancy sweater because it is the first one I've ever attempted to knit.  I love the simplicity of the pattern - a top-down raglan with simple finishes all knit in one piece, so there will be no sewing involved.

The sweater is knit in a cheap acrylic that I used to be fond of in 2008.  It is silky and soft - a good thing in a sweater; however, not such a good thing to knit with.

A couple of days ago, I discovered that I had made a mistake in decreasing for the ribbed wristband.  I then (as I always do when confronted with a mistake) proceeded to take my needles out of my knitting and ripped away to the point where the mistake was made.  Fearless.  Self-assurred.  Stupid.  The silky yarn caused some of the stitches to unravel further down than others.  I stared in disbelief.

Two hours later, I had succeeded in painstakingly getting all the stitches fixed and situated correctly on the needle.  And then I made the same mistake in decreasing.  I modified the next row to get the right number of stitches, and then I left it.  I made a note of what I did so as to make the next sleeve the same way.

I've accepted that sometimes I can't do what I always did with what I have now.  I try, I modify, I slip up and learn to live with the consequences, making the best of the situation.  And I wonder, is it that I'm no longer in charge of what I'm doing?  Have my skills abandoned me over the years?  Is "done" now better than "perfect"?  And I realized that sometimes it's the journey that is the most fulfilling part of reaching a destination.  Another life lesson from the art of knitting.

My knitting has gotten me through every difficult passage over the last ten years.  It has always been my therapy of choice.  The act of pulling yarn through stitches repeatedly has been a type of meditation, and it has been there for me whenever I've needed it.  And now I'm finding that my knitting is something that changes from year to year, from project to project, and I love it even more.  No matter how much it changes, it is always there for me.  It is the one constant in my world.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Past, Present, Future

My bedroom walls are now three colors.  Dark, medium, light.  Brown, beige, cream.  The strange thing about these particular walls is that the light from the southern exposure makes the colors morph throughout the day.  At times, the brown appears to be a pewter grey.  At times, the beige and cream appear to be the same color.  It is like being in a kaleidoscope room with the colors ever changing.  It adds to my constant feeling of confusion lately.

Since the move, I live in a world where past, present and future commingle.  The way things were done in the past is no longer possible in all situations.  I keep trying to find my way around the present day which is a constant exercise in trial and error.  The future needs to be planned for - registering for school, assimilating into our new surroundings, trying to rebuild our family life.

The past keeps nagging at me, lurking in the back of my mind at all times.  Going to the grocery store, I have to ask myself, "Where was this located in my old store?" in the hopes that it will be located in that same area in the new store.  This has never worked.  It is always in a different place, and my quick trips for groceries end up lasting two hours.

The present is a constant adventure.  Meeting new people is my favorite part.  The neighbors here are very friendly people.  After working in a recruiting office for almost a decade, I am adept at reading people.  And I can tell that the woman next door had been best friends with the woman who used to live in my house.  I saw from her facial expressions that I didn't quite measure up to her expectations when we first met.  The guy across the street is a comedian.  The other guy across the street is very friendly and helpful, and my sense of humor seemed to surprise him.  The guy who lives behind us might just be a bit pervy - he said he'd really like it if I could come over and meet his dog(?)  And he said to come over any time.  Okay, then . . .

The future is a constant worry.  When will the kids make friends?  Will they like school?  Will I find a job?  Am I ever going to figure out an easy way to get all the laundry from upstairs down into the laundry room?  And how am I ever going to make this new pantry work?

I look forward to the day when everything is relaxed again.  Everything is second nature.  Everything will work.  A day when I can look at the colors on my bedroom walls and know that the wall is brown, not grey because it will be locked in my subconscious mind.  The day when certainty returns.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


Twenty-four years ago today, my father passed away at 9:02 a.m.  I was 24 years old at the time, so he has been gone from my life for as long as he was in it which seems really weird.  Time passes so quickly.  Yet there are times when he is right here with me while I go about my everyday tasks.  A memory will come to mind.  A saying of his will make its way through my thoughts.  And it is like a part of him never really left me.  He was a person worthy of remembering.  A father whom I loved so very much.

Love heals our hearts.  Love transcends the things that bring us down and lifts us up.  Love, it appears, is permanent.  It is as stable and constant as my father was in life.  And it is what I feel today as I look out at the snowflakes gently falling from Heaven and swirling around like an embrace.  One from a loving father who is with me today as he was 24 years ago and he will be 24 years from now.  And I wonder how the love I'm sending back to him looks from where he is in Heaven.