Friday, February 1, 2008

Jubilee Waning


This will be the last weekend of my Jubilee year and soon I will fade into the obscurity of a “one” year. The painters are two days behind schedule but I believe they will soon be gone and the kitchen will be as it will be. The cooking that I’ve been able to do this last month has filled me with joy, tearing up at the scrambling of an egg. One of our first guests will be Himself’s birthmother and her husband next weekend, a miracle I never dreamed of at the beginning of my Jubilee year.

Fifty left me fatherless and my mother has drifted farther away. So many friends have lost parents, that huge helpless, liberating, horrifying, devastating kick in the ass into adulthood that is inevitable for most of us. This morning Kaz called to say that Alice, a mean and loving mother, like my mean and loving mother, has passed away. God rest her in peace and I send my love and warmth to all in Fresno, but, for crissakes Kristine, do something about your hair!

Himself’s adoptive mom died about eight years ago, having (because it’s really only about me) grown to hate me less, which left me pretty unconflicted about my relationship with her except for nearly colliding with her open casket being wheeled into the church. I don’t really have much to say about my husband’s relationship with her as he hasn’t had that much to say about it himself. I feel sad sometimes that while my parents always valued and appreciated me, they never really saw in me that which I most value about myself. I sense my husband feels that way about his adoptive parents but he doesn’t spend as much time masticating over his own feelings and the feelings of others as I do (particularly the feelings of others…).

In San Francisco, I watched my husband, having known the woman who gave birth to him all of ten hours, sit across a table from her and oblivious to every other soul in the universe, discuss James Joyce. I asked him, given the number of years he’s lived without his adoptive mother and the amazing funhouse mirror experience of meeting his birthmother, what came into his head when he heard the word “mother” and he just shook his head. Perhaps he is conflicted out of loyalty to his adoptive mom and the promise of feeling valued by his birthmother in exactly the same way he values himself.

Shabbat again and I hope I do better on the choice of family video than last week and will say publicly, as my private apology hasn’t had much weight, that I admit Kill Bill, Part One was a rather poor choice. I aspire to better film selections and to a finished kitchen and to cook there a meal worthy of the woman who bore into this world the man whose value and valor nourishes my soul. For Shabbat and every day I send a blast of love to those who remind me not to define myself by the slights I’ve been slighted but by the love that I am brave enough to give and to receive.
B'shalom. Alice and everyone.

2 comments:

harry said...

Damn... and I was going to get the Ipod with all the music I would have you listen to (my life's greatest pleasure, forcing those I love to listen to music I love). "Here, here, shut up and listen to Jazz Butcher!!"

So seven times seven then you rest in a year of no sins. Now what?

Love and Happy Birthday from Bob and Chris

Fionnchú said...

The Jubilee is also supposed to be, as "Harry" could cite chapter & verse, a time of cancelling debts. Bono got wind of this a few years ago for Africa before he opted pragmatically for selling "Red" instead. I wish it could work that way for you and us. But, and you express well the lack of or presence of feelings I have towards two women who both claim the title "Mother," one willingly, the other under duress, of me, this curious creature. And you, curiouser and curiouser for having chosen me. I still can't believe my good fortune after all these years together. xxx me