We don't give gifts to each other here, Mr. Wonderful and I. This year we can say it's because we're taking a vacation in January which sort of "counts" for Christmas and our anniversary, which was last week or something. Maybe the week before, I've lost track of time lately. And why, one might ask, have I lost track of time?
Since my mother's stroke-or-whatever on the night of that delightful Brad Paisley concert my life has been a total chaos of doctor's visits, writing a second book, worrying over Girl ('The Baby') away at college, and a few other not so public but nonetheless distracting issues. Then I found out I do NOT have breast cancer. I did, however, find The Lump which I ignored for months, but it failed to retreat, and I gave up. The nurse in me made a decision, and we went in for a visit. Apparently I was not alone in feeling the little bugger, so I was treated to my first mammogram, my first ultrasound, and a visit to the first radiologist I've ever wanted to hug. (Which is to say "fluid filled cyst" rather than "of concern and needs a biopsy"). Oh, and the mammogram? I've given birth, twice, without drugs. The mammogram was a walk in the park, really, honestly, and therefore there is NO excuse for you, gentle reader, to not be on the phone making an appointment for one. I am going to have another one in six months. Given my family's history with various cancers, all in women, any lump makes me a little edgy. Clean slate. Deep breath, back to writing the book. There were other, less interesting events which in a normal year I would have scoffed at and quickly forgotten. But this year everything felt like more bricks on my head. There were no small moments. Even the simple act of going grocery shopping took on immense proportions. My house is not clean. But I did cut the dogs nails pretty regularly, and emptied the cat box often, which is important. Things like breathing, exercise and relaxation all took a pretty way-back seat. Think 1970's station wagon. Way, way back.
Where was I going with this? Yes, Gifts. OK, so Gene (oops. I mean Mr. Wonderful) and I do not give each other gifts. This is not a new tradition, although some years we cheat a little. But I do get a gift this year, although it's one of my own making.
It's done. Or, well, not really done - done, but as done as it can be for the moment, and after a couple of additional tweaks to three patterns this morning my portion will be, for the moment, done. There are some samples in need of knitting, but given the holiday deadline that's quite minor. And those socks are not a critical piece to more forward right now.
My gift to me is not really the completion of yet another delightful little labor of literary love. My gift to me is peace, joy and a sense of accomplishment in the face of not insignificant challenge. And also? A big glass of wine and a bubble bath. Because I am worth it.
Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!
(and an end to Dazee's lap-envy!)