Four hours later I made my bleary-eyed debut in front of the coffee maker, pressed the magic button, and stumbled around opening blinds and welcoming in the day. I would say I welcomed the sun, but alas, it is overcast. It’s the perfect, grey, fall, day to snuggle in and nest.
These are the fall days I’m most fond of. The ones where you can throw on a pair of jeans, sneakers and a sweater and take a stroll without being scorched by the sun, or blown away by a blizzard.
Grey days though, at the beginning of fall (not the nasty bleakness of late November) are the best for baking and cooking.
As a little girl, I was attached at the hip to my maternal grandmother. She taught me to roll pastry dough, to iron, and best of all, during days like today, she would sneak me to the top of the stairs, and read poetry with me.
My paternal grandmother was a woman who lived her life without apology; strong, independent, and fiercely protective of her family. She could also cook and bake like nobody’s business.
I gave her a journal for Christmas one year, and she faithfully wrote in it every day. She gave me the journal when she got sick, and I read it. Her September 13 entry reads,
Babysitting again. Scott slept until noon. Paula got home about 4 o’clock. Nancy came to watch our show. Jake was here. Patricia called. Called Carol later.
(names have been changed to protect the multiple identities of my wacky relatives)
I read her every-day notes, and know that life is just a series of weaving these days together; good and bad, full and lonely, happy and sad. A life is made up of a series of seemingly insignificant moments that, when stitched together make a beautiful tapestry.
This morning as I stumbled in my half-awake-stupor, back to my writing desk, I had a sudden grief wash over me. I had a deep desire to pick up the phone and talk with her. I missed her with the same intensity I did when she died 15 years ago. More than anything I wanted to connect, to hear her voice, seek her advice, and most of all, do what we so often did when we were together; laugh. My phone rang….
I do believe this to be her way of answering a question I’ve had in my heart for some time. Yah, it may just be coincidence, but since it was an atypical call, I’m going to go with, “Thanks granny you old wise woman you, I really needed that.”
Most of the messages I tend to notice are likely just my conscience calming down my anxious nature. Others are; Stay the course. Be patient, screw this and get the hell outta there.
So this morning, I felt lonely, that hollow pit of grief that always remains regardless of time or space when you lose someone you love, and I was given a conversation with someone I love very much to help soothe the ache.
Life is a continuous season of change; friendship, career, life and death.
Although our loved ones die, they remain with us as part of our conscience, whispering to our selves. They remind us of our dreams, reassure us when we are fearful, and once in a while, if we’re really quiet in our minds, shine a little light in the darkness when we’re unsure of which path to take.
Baking and cooking is one of the ways I quiet my mind enough to hear those whispers from the women who loved me the most. I’m sure that both of my granny’s will be with me today in the kitchen. But first…one more coffee…