Parker Palmer wrote once, "....there is a hard truth to be told: before spring becomes beautiful, it is plug ugly, nothing but mud and muck. I have walked in the early spring through fields that will suck your boots off, a world so wet and woeful it makes you yearn for the return of ice. But in that muddy mess, the conditions for rebirth are being created."
Peggy called early this morning and when I didn't answer the phone she showed up. She knows when to kick my butt and when to let me be. She told me to go to church. What could I do? I knew I'd have to answer to her later at Easter lunch. It's hard to say no to Peggy. So I got myself dressed and showed up at church, late. I cried through most of it, especially communion; and I left before the socializing. But I went. And it was good for me. I love those people. My heart aches for who David and I were there, together. But I will be something new there now. I have no idea who, but that will come. The rector said something that gave me hope, I'm not sure I remember what exactly, but it had to do with the resurrection being about becoming something new, unknown, but better than you've been before. Maybe he didn't say that at all, but it's what I heard. Okay, I can do this. maybe.
We had a crazy, child filled dinner and then I came home and realized how quiet the house is. I find myself either talking to David or keeping the tv on. I alternate between the two. The animals take up no more room than they ever did. I am tempted to get more, but probably ought to wait a bit. Every time I would talk about another animal David would say, "which two are you getting rid of?" Does it qualify that he is gone now?
I stumbled on an old old movie, a favorite of my grandmothers, but one I have never seen. "Easter Parade" with Judy Garland and Fred Astaire. My grandmother and mother used to make all of our clothes and Easter was a big deal. We got new clothes from the inside out and often there were matching dresses, purses, and hats. I hated it as I got older but look back on it fondly now. My gramma used to sing "In Your Easter Bonnet" every Easter. I remember Easter dinner was often hamburgers and potato salad made with Easter eggs, eaten at the beach. We spent most weekends on the water or at the beach. No real meaning in this memory stuff, just remembering. David and I didn't celebrate much, keeping things pretty simple. I am grateful for that now.
So tonight I am tired. Physically tired, but mostly emotionally tired. Tired of crying, tired of feeling sad, tired of coping. I am ready to remember that the pain and mess of Good Friday does indeed result in the new life of Easter. I have nothing to do but trust and hope that Parker is right, the conditions of rebirth are being created. Trust and hope have never been my best skills, or maybe they have, in any case I am learning them in new depth. Here's to the muck and mud.