I still have days when I feel like I don't Want to go on alone, but somehow having survived a year without Ann has given me the feeling that maybe I Can. A year, has it really been so long? Doesn't feel like it could be.
Yesterday I sent some things to Ann's family, small momentos, which I Couldn't have let go of, even a month ago. And last night I had this craving to find and touch the Fair Trade, special basket in which her ashes were stored until the dogwoods blomed and I could take them to the Mark Twain National Forest to be scattered. It isn't logical, but somehow touching that basket, finding that, yes, it Was still protected from sunlight and in perfect condition seemed like a momentary connecting with Ann. Yes, I did tell myself that all the basket ever held were her Ashes, not Ann. But that's not Quite true. It also held those things I chose to be cremated with her. There were bits of her favorite foods wich she had become unable to eat due to diabetes and Celiac Disease, something from her altar, and also from mine. There was incense, state quarters from her collection, coffee beans, something to delight all of the earthly senses. Things I knew she would like. So for a short while, that basket held a symbol of the love we felt for one another, and which I felt for Ann.
I am Glad one round of difficult holidays is Gone! I don't know if I will ever put up a Christmas tree again, doesn't seem worth it for just myself. But another year can bring a lot of changes. Anyway the Christmas lights will be on at night until they burn out and when I think of Ann I can light the candle I chose to light in her memory and which our Buddhist group made our dedication over in the first meeting after the anniversary of Ann's death.
I haven't been able to listen to the blues show out of the public radio station in Springfield since Ann died, until tonight. I would try for a few minutes, get restless and bored, then turn it off.
Always before Ann and I listened to it together and turned down the radio to talk during songs which bored us both. Tonight I sewed and listened, then decided to write this blog during an extremely Long boring piece. But Ann might have liked it, and if she had been here I'd have left it on.
Having read "Roots" by Alex Haley made it a different experience, too. The grief of a man praying for his baby to return might have been the grief of Bell and Kunt Kinte (all right, I Listened to the book, did Not read name spelling in Braille, I Am sorry if I got it wrong.) Anyway, it might have been their grief when their daughter was sold away from them for helping a slave try to escape. It might have been the grief of Matilda when her husband, Chicken George was told no free black people were allowed to live in North Carolina and as he was free and his wife was a slave, he Must leave. It might have been the grief of Ireen's mother for her Native husband who was killed with his village by the slave catchers who recaptured her. That grief which comes out in lost or destroyed relationships is an ancient one which comes out in the blues. As I listened tonight, I thought not only of Ann and me, but of Kunta's parents and brothers, and all of those thousands of people captured, sold away from one another and in so many other ways separated by force. I came to love Kunta and Bell during that book, and they and their family will be a part of my understanding from now on. It's the way a truly unforgetable book works for me. Of course, the oral interpretation of Avery Brooks made each one of those people come alive!
So now I will either go back to listening to blues and sewing, or crash. I'll check the music first.
Maybe what people call "progress" after someone you love dies is simply the ability to keep moving on. You doll collectors and online friends have helped me to continue moving on and I thank each person who has read or checked out this blog from time to time. May you each be safe, warm, and well! Good night.