Thanksgiving, here and now

November 27, 2008 by barbara

ChickadeeChickadeebarbara writes

A funny thing happened to me on the way to the keyboard….
Ummm, long time no see!
So, uh, cold enough for ya?

Crikey! It’s been so long since I’ve been here, I don’t remember how to think or write. (Okay, you’re rolling your eyes and saying, “And this is new how?”, right?)

I did make a cameo appearance on election day or thereabouts. Otherwise, it’s been up to Susan to keep the clothesline from drooping into the frosted-over leaves out back.

The clothes poles never did get painted this summer. The shed is even more ramshackle than last year at this time. The pears and apples and plums I couldn’t reach from the ground froze on their high-hanging branches. There will be no jam, no applesauce this year. Friends gathered to cut back David’s gardens for me. I took care of the tea roses and the butterfly bush myself. The pond is covered with the Styrofoam form David crafted to insulate it, and over that lies a brand new slab of plywood a friend brought to replace the rotting OSB that’s done the job for one too many years. There’s firewood on the patio for David’s pet wood stove, and the new doors he wanted have all been installed.

And so, here we are in the place between. Not quite finished with autumn, not yet fully winter. Brother Garry has recovered again from abdominal surgery, but is not quite ready to leave here for his own home. Everyone seems to be second-guessing a man who’s won’t be president until January. There’s a kind of breath-taking thing going on with free-falling investments that have just caught a momentary updraft before they tank again. And so it goes. Click here for more.

Ups and downs, ins and outs, beginnings and endings. The stuff of all our lives. But I’m going to stay personal about Thanksgiving because…oh, I don’t know. Just because.

I am thankful for my aging body that withstands the abuses I heap upon it. An amazing, fleshy machine, really.

I am thankful for my Aunt Joan in Peoria (yes, people really do live in Peoria). She is aging, too, moving toward the finish line faster than I am, I believe. We are too far apart geographically to be much help to each other now.

I am thankful for my kids. They’re adults, actually. But it would only be confusing to say I’m thankful for my early middle-agers. They stepped to that old plate in ways I could never have imagined they would be willing to during David’s illness, after his death, and then *snap* into Garry’s medical mess. Who loves ya, babies?

I am thankful for the chickadees because I know they’ll stick around all winter. Oh, there are others, but the chickadees are so very small.

I am thankful for Barack Obama, because (his detractors notwithstanding) he represents hope that has been in such short supply for eight grueling years.

I am thankful for my friends – our friends – who have been steadfast and loving all year long.

I am thankful for Caribou Coffee. (Yes, I am that shallow.)

I am thankful for my brother. The guy who listens intently each night as I read to him from “The Magic Treehouse” books, and then excuses himself to go to bed. Each night, he pauses at the top step, looking down, waiting. And I say each night, “Would you like me to tuck you in?” And he says, “Yes, please.” And so I do. And he flashes me one of his megawatt smiles and we know that we are fine with each other.

I am thankful for medical practitioners, however imperfectly they deal with cancer. They keep trying – most of them with immense compassion and skill.

I am thankful for the life of David. Most of what I know about the out-of-doors, about patience, kindness, environmental responsibility, about endurance I learned from him. He will be in my heart forever.

I am thankful for the possibility that hearts heal eventually.

I am thankful that you come here, read what we have to say, and keep coming back. Even when we’re seriously random, which is much of the time.

Happy Thanksgiving.


Posted in


MLS (not verified) | November 27, 2008 - 8:04am

Barbara, I am thankful to you for sharing your thoughts both personally and politically with all of us at the CL blog. You are a good example of love and courage when the tough got
tougher in your life this past year.


barbara writes (not verified) | November 30, 2008 - 11:07am

Hey, Marilyn! I appreciate your warm support very much. You've been there all along the way in this past year's journey. Thanks so much.



Randi (not verified) | November 29, 2008 - 1:24am

Dear Barbara,
We met just briefly once .... but I always read the Clothesline so I feel I know you a bit and I want you to know my heart hurt for you as you have gone through such sad days with your dear David. You have a strong spirit and your last post teaches us all to be gracious and thankful even in our darkest days. I often find myself reading the Clothesline just before bed. You often make me laugh and you are always right in all your wisdom. Tonight I will say a prayer for you before I go to sleep .... that your heart will heal and you will find comfort in beautiful memories.
with love from a reader


paul miller (not verified) | November 29, 2008 - 10:59am

wlecome back!


barbara says (not verified) | November 30, 2008 - 11:12am

Hey, cousin! Well, not really, but the name thing . . .

Thanks for checking in! I appreciate you.



barbara says (not verified) | November 30, 2008 - 11:11am

Oh, Randi. I do remember you. Thanks so much for your kind and gentle support. It's been about a 10-year year, and folks like you have made the going a bit easier. Seriously. And maybe we should post a caveat that reading the Clotheslineblog just before bedtime can be hazardous to your health. Might have a sedating effect?! *g* Thanks again.



evden eve nakliyat (not verified) | June 21, 2009 - 11:33am

very good comment thanks....evden eve nakliyat