I mailed the 15 pounds of holiday goodies which didn't fit in his suitcase, marveling at the heft of those new t-shirts and gym clothes. I laughed as I noticed that, for the first time in a long time, I was not wearing an article of clothing I'd inherited from him..... in the 5th grade.... when we were the same size. He didn't feel so far away any more.
Not remembering that she was taking an extended holiday weekend from work, I wondered why Little Cuter wasn't answering my messages. When her reminder email arrived this afternoon, I could hear her laughing at my forgetfulness."Oh, Mama.... you are so silly... I love you." Being a source of amusement to my daughter has been a near constant certainty since she was 11 years old; it keeps me grounded. It was also exactly what I needed to get over her brother's absence.
Part one of my life - I'm a mom.
I spent the afternoon at a press conference announcing the outdoor activities planned for January 7th. I'm ambivalent about the media in general, and this afternoon in particular. "Yes, I have spoken to a therapist. No, I will not share what I learned. " I had to be polite; I wanted the publicity for my event.
People recognized me and hugged me and were glad to see me again. In my cowboy boots I was less uncomfortable than the women who had worn heels for the occasion. Sneakers would have been better, or the very comfy looking black rubber soled boots the National Parks Ranger was wearing as she eloquently described the beauty that surrounds Tucson.
Standing on the pebbles for an hour was an exercise in not fidgeting; I am proud to say I acquitted myself admirably. I used the time to stretch out of my hip joint and fell all my foot centers and as I channeled my pilates instructors I amused myself with the notion that, in fact, not much has changed. I'm still multi-tasking, as I always did.
Part two of my life - I'm a public figure.
The press conference was held in the park adjacent to the labyrinth; the parking lot was on the other side. The walk from The Schnozz to the folding chairs, on a paved path, a few hundred yards at most, should have been a non-event.
Instead, I found myself shaking - literally quaking in my boots. No matter where I looked, there was not a security guard nor a police officer to be found.
I began by smiling at everyone I saw, asking "Are you a person who is in charge?" No one was in charge. No one could find my friend, the Executive Officer who has spent the last few months herding cats. No one could make me stop shaking. I found myself huddled in a corner, with a trailer behind me, my eyes darting left and right and up and down, looking for someone who didn't fit, who might hurt me. I tried to be unobtrusive, but I was shaking and it was kind of hard for people to ignore.
The ExO arrived and put me inside the trailer with a cordon of lovely women between me and the world. We were all focused outward, until the TMC angel brought their head of security to my side. He assured me that I had not created a problem, that they were glad to help, that the K-9 unit and several officers were now on site and as I began to breathe again I saw them, weaponry holstered but available, scanning the site and keeping me safe.
I thanked everyone and they said they understood. But I don't know how that can be possible. I barely understand it myself.
Part three of my life - the last time I went to an event like this I ended up with bullet holes.