Monday, November 30, 2015

Tradition

Bisbee wall mural inspiration


In the sticky month of July I called Mr. Scabs mother and announced that I would bring the kids for Thanksgiving!  I love their house, full of love and fun and cousins and baked things.  But most of all, I have fallen in love Mr. Scabs family, who over the years has come to feel like my very own blood. We've held hands through this trauma which rocked all our worlds.  Salt of the earth.

The last few years, Thanksgiving has held some kind of hostage over me.  Shadows of D-day and nightmares and painful wedding anniversaries and paralyzed legs, ya know, just the usual holiday anxiety.  

Some years Thanksgiving floated by without so much as an anxious flutter of my heart.  Other years it passed by as heavily and thickly as any terrible trauma does.  Other times I've felt a simple sense of honor and peace for these experiences.  Ahhh Thanksgiving...you are my achilles heal.  

This year...

10 hours before our flights engine roared and took to the November sky, I called his family and tearfully explained that I couldn't do it this year.  We all cried.  It's painful for everyone, but they understand.  And, the sickness I felt in my gut lifted the moment I decided to stay.  While we ate breakfast, I explained to my kids that they were about to have the greatest vacation with Dad at Grandma's house and that I was so excited for them to go and have fun!  I told them I couldn't wait to hear all about it (attitude is everything when explaining these difficult things to kids)!  They got excited and that made me happy. 

Mr. Scabs said it wasn't fair and that he is so sorry.  More than once he offered to stay home and let me go, but my heart knew I needed to stay.  

And so, I balked all tradition and put Mr. Scabs and the kids on a plane.

Thank the powers that be for Airbnb!  My search found the most adorable last minute "tiny" bungalow for rent in the little hippy town of Bisbee, AZ.  I spent the next day maxing out my house, mopping floors, doing all the laundry, making pet arrangements, baking a ham and rolls and a big fat pumpkin pie.  It was kinda fun cooking for my solo Thanksgiving dinner.  That night my head hit the pillow and I slept.  

Word must have spread around the neighborhood about my tradition balking because the pies started flooding in.  My neighbors are so kind and I had a million invitations to join their meals.  Some expressions clearly couldn't understand why I'd choose to be alone much less alone on Thanksgiving. Others wished they could join me.  

I gathered all my pies, my yoga mat and my books and began my roadtrip.  

At the gas station I met an older man dressed in a plaid shirt and cuffed jeans with a wooden cross hanging from his neck.  He was filling the tank of his dark red VW bus.  I looked over with envy. The only thing missing from this trip was a bus.  We talked for a minute, he blessed my trip and I blessed his. We said our goodbyes over our insanely gigantic road trip style cokes.  

This year my non-traditional Thanksgiving included, used book stores, eating pumpkin pie in my bed, yoga on the third floor of a Odd Fellows lodge built in 1910, a ghost story tour, reading and praying and being and eating the yummiest corned beef hash from the Breakfast Club.

Later today, I'll pack up the "tiny" bungalow and fill my non-VW bus with gas and drive north.  I'll pass through some pretty fascinating Arizona history and probably stop at all the historical markers because that's what I like to do.  

Many of us ask, how can we pass through the difficult days, memories and family traditions? How do we walk through holidays that may now hold a different meaning?  

This is what I learned: No matter what plans I made in the sticky months of summer,  my new tradition is to honor my gut feelings and follow my instincts, always.

15 comments:

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    1. Always. <3 x 2= always and forever :)

      Seriously though, I didn't always follow my intuition. So glad I am learning how.

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  2. Love your writing! What a beautiful Thanksgiving. Nothing gives a tribute to gratitude than honoring your most personal joys. (aka pumpkin pie and yoga :))

    Love you dearly.

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    1. It was perfect! pie, yoga and I did accidently go to Mexico, but that was fun too. :) Thanks for your sweet compliments! I love you :) and your life which honors all things good and beautiful. xo

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  3. I'm not sure if I could do something like this. I love the idea and I probably need to. It's so scary, you were by yourself??? My family would be so disappointed but I love this idea! You've got me thinking.

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  4. i love this. you're amazing. it sounds pretty great way to spend that time.

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    1. It's up there in my top three favorite thanksgivings! :)

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  5. That sounds seriously enjoyable. Good for you.

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  6. Hi, I want you to know that you have saved my life. I discovered my husbands recent activity on Nov. 19. I soon found your website accidentally. I read everything several times and all your links. My husband has been a sex addict probably all of his life. (with me 20 years) This is not my first rodeo with him and you know what I mean. Today was disclosure day. (again). I was able to ask him to move out only because of you and your story. I have been on my knees for a month solid praying to be able to do that. In the midst of working and raising children. Today is both the worst and the best day of my life- I have the peace of finally saying no, no to this hell. I know there are many more hells to come. Yet because of you I was able to do this and I so needed to do this. Thank you for your story and your help. You have saved, my soul, spirit and life-- Yes God had a biggest part in that too. A new Journey is beginning for me. Finally..........

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    1. When you said that "today is both the worst and best day of my life" I knew that exact feeling in my bones. Those really are the best moments because we suddenly feel the freedom of saying "no" and finding value in ourselves and the thing we want for our life. I'm proud of you! I'm happy my story could help get you out the door and start seeing things in a different light. xo!

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  7. I SO need to do this for myself. I am trying to catch up on all your posts :) I love your blog and it has helped me so much. I probably haven't found the correct post yet but are you and Mr Scabs still together? Do you live in Arizona? Hopefully I have this linked up so I get the reply. Lol

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    1. Hi Monica! yes I'm in arizona and in the process of writing about what happened with mr scabs and i on this journey.

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hi

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