It was a pleasure-packed trip. Not only did I get to see where my granddaughter lives during this year of college, I spent hours with some of my siblings. Sisters and brothers cause can some of my greatest discomfort and also my greatest joys. Together we dig the deepest, scream the loudest, cry the hardest and laugh the most.
For a week I basked in the comfort of family history being made. The meals, the walks, the aimless talks will become a part of the family lore the next time we are together. Family time is like wearing comfortable clothes.
I could blabber on with the secure knowledge that if I weren’t loved in spite of myself, at least I couldn’t be discarded. I am too much a thread in the weave of this fabric of our years together. I am vital to the give and take that wraps us in this amorphous package whose ribbons are sometimes stretched to their limits of endurance but are never broken. Someone is always there to make it pretty again if it unravels.
In both of my families (my husband’s and my own) I am struck, too, by the synthesis of who we are with those who have gone before us. We share rueful stories of our parents who are gone. We miss our sisters. We mourn our lost child. And still, those who have passed are with us. Their memories are a sense of being that plumps out our reminiscences. Their names pop easily into our conversations, bringing our past into the present joy of seeing each other.
This is a comfort to me. It lends a continuity to life. When I am gone, I will still be at the table with my family.