Monday, September 03, 2012

Labor Day

Hot and humid, but we celebrated Labor Day with a porch party tonight--my local children and grandchild and neighbors. I created a hot dog bar with little cards detailing the toppings for different kinds of dogs--Mexican, Chicago, German, Franks and Beans, Coney Dogs. Watch Potluck with Judy next week for more details. But hot as it was, it was pleasant to sit on the porch and trade banter. Jacob was bored beause there were no other kids and finally retreated to the TV--he'd had a long day and played hard with his cousins in Coppell. The rest of us were lazy and tired, full and content. Wine was drunk, beer was sipped, and too much food eaten.
But I am struck with the fragility of life tonight. My friend who's in the midst of a life change is staying in my garage apartment. I am so glad I can offer this help and a place of refuge, and I'm grateful for the company, but I grieve for the changes she's going through. No matter how the current crisis comes out, her life will never again be the same. She's strong, and she'll be fine--but I feel like this is happening to one of my own children. My neighbor Jay is just back from Vermont where he went for a family conference about his father's health--apparently all seven children met. His dad knows he has problems, knows therapy and rehab work will prolong his life, but won't do it. He goes home today or tomorrow with full-time medical care--a good situation but one with an inevitable outcome. A neighbor who was supposed to join us tonight couldn't because of health. And Christian's grandmother died last night in a rehab facility, two days shy of her 95th birthday. I hope her family can take comfort in the fact that she was probably just done, just tired. A lifelong friend is close to marking the one-year anniversay of the death of her husband--a true love match if I ever saw one, and he was too young to leave us. So much sadness.
I sense that change and a certain inevitability are all around us. I'm not depressed by it in the way of thinking that my turn is next, but I am saddened by what happens to people. Not sure how to say this, but some people obsess over the smallest changes in their lives. Sort of "Don't park in my parking space" when there are such larger life changes all around us. Seeing those larger changes makes you--or should make you--put life in perspective.
I guess I pray for all of us tonight a sense of life's beauty...and its fragility. My hope, for myself and others, is to learn to treasure the glory of the moment, the day, and give thanks. I always liked the saying, "Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first." Maybe that sums up what I'm thinking.
Awk! I'm no good at philosphizing, but there's a certain blue mood around me tonight, in spite of the pleasant time and good company.

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