"How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults, or resolution enough to mend them." ~ Benjamin Franklin
"Resolve to take fate by the throat and shake a living out of her." ~Louisa May Alcott
"I think in terms of the day's resolutions, not the year's." ~ Henry Moore
First of all.. Let me wish everyone a safe and
Happy New Year!!
Please do NOT drink and drive..
I am so ready for this year to be over.. the economy hasn't been kind to many of the people I personally know.. friends and family have struggled with finding or keeping jobs.. cuts in pay have meant hard times for many people... Especially those with little children... though I don't think things will improve for most of us financially as far as wage increases or even an increase in hours worked or available jobs.. at least with the end of the year comes a hope for better things to come.. I am optimistic as I sit here in the quiet of my house and await the midnight hour alone...
I am alone by choice... I could have gone to a number of celebrations.. alone.. It seems I am a funny person and have a number of offers to " Come! Have a drink! Make us Laugh!".. I could have gone to my baby sister's house and laughed and talked and rested from the real world in the safety of her kitchen in a jacked up chair.. with something refreshing in a glass.. or a hot cup of coffee and something good to eat.. we might have even had some fireworks... maybe we could have wrote out names in the frosty night air with sparklers.. but it is raining... Dave is at work.. Emily needed some cooking done for a party that they were going to.. I could have gone out..
instead I made pasta salad for her friends party and then helped her bake a peach cobbler from Mama's family recipe.. I am happy to have ended the year sharing time with one of my children.. I will admit that it would have been great to have all of them here.. I wonder if that will ever happen again...
I could have gone to my best friends house and had a glass of watered wine with her.. we talked earlier and she was cooking something or other from her yard.. Thai people eat all kinds of things.. most of it green and all of it hot.. I asked what she was cooking and she said "egg.. fish.. something from my country.. good for you.. make you good luck.. we have wine but you only have water wine.. you drive.. I drink.." I promised to call her closer to midnight and we said a million I love you's.. I was sixteen when I met her.. she swore she was 16 too but she was actually 25 or 26.. she was my friend and many times my protector.. we had a large circle of old friends and of course through the years we added new ones.. except for two others that we rarely see.. and us.. the old circle is gone now.. all of them died too young.. she wonders aloud sometimes which of us will be next.. though I don't say it aloud I privately hope it will be me.. I can't imagine life without Thoi.. I am her longest time friend and she doesn't seem to know me by name.. she has always.. always called me Cassie.. I used to correct her but after a while she added the names of those who died to my name too so that I became Cassie-clifford-gayle-kaykay-linda-robert-bert-ernie-bigbird... you get the idea.. Now if she says Cassie I am happy with that.. One of our newer circle best friends recently told her that she shouldn't call me other folks... especially dead folks.. names.. she simply replied that Cassiekaykay doesn't mind.. the next day she called me to "come right now.. I need to see you face".... her version of come over quickly.. I need to talk to you about something.. face to face... turns out she does actually know my real name.. or at least what everyone calls me.. she spoke almost perfect.. teary eyed.. English as she made sure I wasn't mad with her for calling me a name as long as our friendship... I was just happy that she really does know who I am.. after 35 years it doesn't really matter what she calls me any more.. so many friends have gone on.. some were sick.. some died tragic accidental deaths.. at this point I'm just happy to have her..
I was also invited to my best ex-niece/in-law/forever-friend Sheri's house.. I can only imagine the wonderful foods and games of cards or marbles that they might be playing there.. knowing I don't like to drive at night I bet she would have sent someone for me or even come herself.. we would have definitely had loads to eat.. including her great pizza dip and pots of hot coffee.. she called and later even one of the younger party goers called saying I should hurry on out there..her Daddy could have skipped me over and over at Phase ten cards.. I could have joked and laughed and talked and ate.. they will all gather outside for the grand finally of fireworks just before midnight.. amid shouts of joy and peals of laughter they will light up the sky over their neck of the woods as the New Year rolls in.. I am usually there.. I will think of them tonight as the midnight hour draws near..
This year has been a year of losses for so many people.. jobs and incomes and material losses everywhere.. for our family and the families of a few friends it has also been a year of lost lives..
Even on Christmas Eve morning.. this year.. death paid our family an unexpected visit... My family has a way of adopting not only our spouses but their entire family.. if you had a gazillion siblings and married into our family we would claim them every one.. our children would call them Aunt or Uncle and we would gather for their weddings and births and on and on.. When my phone rang early on Christmas Eve I knew it wasn't good.. My phone doesn't ring early unless something is wrong.. I love all of my siblings.. I love their husbands and wives.. as I listened to My sister-in-law beg my brother not to cry till she told me that her own brother had died.. I wanted to sob myself.. I hurried to dress and go to her brother's house..I stayed with his wife and yes with his body.. until they finally came for him.. my children called him UNK.. he was my brothers best friend and room mate as they traveled together to work in far away cities.. 30 years they had been best friends.. Camella's only brother.. a husband to Paula .. a Father.. a Grandpa.. an Uncle.. and a dear friend.. only 48.. You will be missed my friend..
Camella with her beloved brother
Brad Brown~ 8-25-1961~ 12-24-2009
Quiet time has ended.. My Beloved Dave came in and filled the room and the house with sounds of news and advertisements from the stereo.. The neighbors have began with the fireworks a little early.. My roosters must not like the noise any more than I do.. they are crowing in time with the squeals of the pig and the loud barking of the neighborhood dogs.. all afternoon and night sirens have screamed up and down the highway that runs along the end of our dirt road.. the sound is a lonesome.. dreary sound.. as I listen to the sirens scream by on the way to the hospital that lays just across the lake and then hear the medi-vac copter hover over the airport across the road.. I say a silent prayer.. somewhere tonight another family will suffer a loss.. my own children are out there somewhere welcoming a New Year.. I will wait and hope that this year will be better than the last one.. Dave and I will watch some of the holiday Television and be thankful to be together.. we will ring in the New Year quietly.. we will think of those who have passed away this year.. we will hope for a better year for our children.. we will miss them and pray that they are safe tonight.. If you are celebrating please be safe.. please do NOT drink and drive.. Have a great Night and a wonderful New Year!