Posted on 16 April 2006


Thank the heavens. I woke early today and have slipped out to my house in the garden. All are asleep except my daughter. Just like the old days, we met this morning in the kitchen, both of us in white dressing gowns. Gill arrived home on the 10th and we’ve been almost constant companions. Michael and Mackenzie returned last night after doing a week housekeeping stint at Helen’s so all our children are back under our roof. Later afternoon, we will sit down with family and friends and eat turkey and a vegetable feast prepared by Gill and Karyna. I keep slipping and calling today “Thanksgiving.”

On Friday night, Gill had a barbecue here for all her friends. I helped her prepare. Rob did the barbecuing and I served drinks for a while. And then sat under the stars on the patio/balcony with a number of nineteen/twenty year olds and talked. It was lovely to have the house full of young people – and strange. I’ve known most of the guests since they were in kindergarten and now they all tower over me.

In between running around with Gill, I’ve been writing late summer orders for the store. I am still feeling an ache, a void, as if my heart was being torn from my chest. I tell myself to stop being melodramatic and then, in the same breath, tell myself that I have a right to my anger and grief. (All of it came pouring out on Wednesday night at Marlene’s when I wrote to the question “What am I trying to feed into the possibility of being?”)

On Monday, Gill and I are going to slip away overnight to Whistler to my sister’s cabin/house. We were going to go to Seattle but decided that we were sick of stores, that we simply wanted to be together alone in a beautiful setting. Oh I am happy to have my sweet pea home. She will return to Paris in less than a week to complete the last quarter of her au-pair-dom that I think will be easier after this home coming.

When I was a little girl, we moved houses at least a half a dozen times before I left for good. Gill is the only one of my children who has only lived in one house. This truly is her home. (Someone told me once that the less places one has lived in, the more stable the individual.) When I was a little girl, my mother would buy all her children – five daughters and a son – at Easter, a hollow chocolate egg that I think she bought at a department store where someone, with an icing gun, wrote our names. I loved these eggs. And so, Gill and I bought an egg for everyone who is coming to dinner tonight. I plan, like my mother, to ice on each one a name.

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