I wrote this yesterday and it did not come out right.  So, here's another try. 

There was hardly a minute to sew this weekend.  The only stitches I put in were to baste some hexies in the truck as we drove back and forth to Georgetown.  Linda's son decided to move at lightening speed on breaking down her apartment, so it was time to get the things she had given us.  Some nice artwork, some glassware, some silver, some jewelry for Syd.  Things she knew we would appreciate and that would remind us of her. 

When we got there Saturday, she was pretty sad, knowing her apartment was being disassembled.  Rob and I went in like we do, talking and smiling and laughing and bearing oatmeal cookies.  It was the first time Sydney had seen her.  I watched out of the corner of my eye as she processed what she was seeing.  Linda is still in high spirits and there were hugs for us all and some laughter.  The nurse had to come close the door.  Oops!  First, Syd withdrew.  Hid in a corner where she could not see Linda and Linda couldn't see her.  And, I worried, but I didn't interfere.  And, then she came around in front of the bed and she and Linda had a nice chat while I puttered around the room and Rob checked his phone for the shortest route to the apartment and let them talk.  I was very proud of Sydney.  She showed courage and compassion and understanding.  And, I saw a couple of the early stages of grief pass over her face as we visited  We got to Linda's a few minutes before her son and were puttering around, gathering things she wanted at the hospital.  Sydney picked up the cat and had a nice cry.  She visited with the cat while we packed things up.  She asked if she could go through Linda's extensive costume jewelry and picked out some things she liked.  She needed to talk to Linda's son while he went through it, deciding if she could have it, and she did that.  I was worried that she'd be too shy to even try, but she did good. 

When we got home, we all thought we'd want a nap and some time alone.  But, we didn't.  We gathered in the kitchen and unpacked boxes and tubs of glassware.  And, we laughed and joked and speculated on why someone needed 60 salt cellars, or 35 sherry glasses, most of which were one of a kind.  We unwrapped until we had made a mountain of wrapping paper, and we sorted.  Long term storage for things that we just weren't ready to deal with.  And, a box of things Sydney wanted.  And, things I need to make room for.  And, we laughed.  And, we joked.  And, we talked about Linda.  And, we shared the stories we had heard about Linda's things, many of which we had never seen, so we would unwrap it, and tell the story, and unwrap something else and tell another story or have another laugh.  And, we celebrated our friendship with Linda and cemented the memories in our minds with these treasures of her life. 

Sunday, I opened the box with her needlepoint kits and supplies.  Some of it was so old that the plastic bags had become icky, so I matched yarns with canvases and ended up with a very large bag of leftover yarn in many colors.  And, I threw things away.  Slips of paper, receipts from stores, small patterns that had come loose from their projects.  Unicorns, both finished and unfinished.  The thread tail of every piece of yarn she ever used to needlepoint, I think.  I'll share more about that when I can.  Some things I will finish.  Some, I will share.  But, I'll never need a needlepoint frame or embroidery hoop again. 

But, mostly, it's been about the memories.  And, the sharing.  And, the laughter.  And, the sense of family that we have enjoyed.  And, the cookies.  The cookies I took on Saturday were too hard for her to enjoy, so Sunday I baked her cookies from a recipe I found in the apartment.  Apparently, even though I had never tasted one, and even though it's a very unusual recipe, using cool whip as the liquid part of the cookies, I got them just right and they were very soft and fluffy.  And, from what I heard, she was making good progress at trying to find the bottom of the tin.

But, today, I have a special task.  Today, I have to talk to her about what she's going to do, because right now, she's watching the clock and waiting.  And, I need to get a book in her hand at the very least, maybe some crochet.  Find something that's interesting.  I'll only have to nudge her.  She's just in a funk and needs a start.  Needs somebody to show they care about how much she enjoys what's left.  And, maybe needs to know someone noticed. 

And, that's what we do for family.  We nudge gently where we need to.

I've been so busy I haven't had a chance to take this baby for a test drive.  She thought it was lost, but I found it in a box.  (With what may be her wedding dress...not sure what to do with that.)

Or, talk about the Instant Pot that Rob brought home from his trip to his Mom's.  His sister bought it, tried it once, remembered she doesn't like to cook, and packed it away.  She was moving when Rob was there, and she gave it to him to bring to me.  I've used it once and "instant" might be a bit of a misnomer, but I could definitely see uses for it and will try some other things.  I made Tikka Masala in it, using the pressure cooker feature and the saute feature.  It was delicious, but it wasn't any faster than my regular recipe.  Do you have an electric pressure cooker?  Do you love it?  What's your favorite recipe?  I'm collecting.

Everybody have a great Tuesday.  I'm winding up several projects that are all due at the same time.  I'm working diligently to focus on one thing at a time, wrap it up, and then move calmly on to the next thing.




Anonymous said...

My comments are few today
"God Bless you!"

Carla said...

a very moving post. I have a Kenmore like the one you posted. It'll celebrate it's 40th birthday this Christmas.
I hope your friend is comfortable and you were able get her interested in a book or crochette.


Lane said...

Not sure how much she’s enjoying my books. But she sure enjoyed that enchilada I brought for lunch. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This is what love looks like. I'm happy you're in the world. Elle

Dot Wankat said...

Lane you live such a fine, fine life. The day I found your blog was an unrecognized red letter day.

If this is a rewrite, it was worth the wait - written with careful thought and love. The best part, to me is: "And, that's what we do for family. We nudge gently where we need to."

Sydney seems to be flowering as a lovely, caring young woman. Your family, including LD, is very special.

Marei said...

Ah...you are the kind of "family" I want to have. The ones that care and share and do the 'heavy lifting' when necessary. Linda is lucky to have you all in her life, and I have no doubt you all are even luckier to have her in yours. Blessings and peace to you as you all walk this next path together.

I have an instapot....hate it! So. Freaking. Slow!