gradually sinking in

We picked up Mom’s ashes from the funeral home today. Jerry plans to scatter them in her garden, so we didn’t need to go the heirloom-urn route. We said we’d bring our own, since it was going to be sort of a temporary thing anyway, and then the only thing we could find that was really big enough, without being a clear glass thing (that would be too much information, I think) or a plastic bucket (disrespectful) was the old ceramic cookie jar she used when we were kids. When I say “used”, of course, I mean she filled it with honey-sweetened health-nugget pseudo-cookies loaded down with sesame and sunflower seeds and whatever other nutrition-bombs she could pack in, and which we generally refused to eat, since they hardly qualified as actual cookies. I think they were low-fat too, and I know she used whole wheat flour. One of the things I will remember about Mom is how she was always trying to sneak an extra little bit of nutrition into everything we ate. It’s certainly one way to show love. So anyway, that cookie jar is now on the dining room table, with Mom’s earthly remains in it, and it’ll stay there for another few days. Apparently I am the only one who’s weirded out by that.

Hell, I’m weirded out by the whole thing. I think I’ve absorbed the fact that my Mom has died, but the collateral stuff isn’t really sinking in yet, the fact that I can’t list this as my permanent address, and who am I going to call every saturday evening now, and what am I talking about when I say “home”?

Sigh. Anyway. A little restless now, not sure what to do. I’ve bagged up the clothes and boxed up shoes and picture frames and stuff and stuff and stuff, Nate’s taking the photos and heirlooms to Denver, and he’s sorted out all the files and records. I’ve established with Jerry that the kitchen should be cleaned out by women who live around here and can take proper care of things…absorb the spices into their own kitchens instead of just throwing them away, for instance. And the dishes should just stay in the cupboards until the garage sale, it’s the safest place for them. So really I guess there isn’t much left for me to do here, except wander around and sort of say goodbye. I feel weird being here in what is essentially Jerry’s space until it sells, but I’m not sure I’m ready to go back to Jack & Mary’s in Seattle yet. I guess there really isn’t any more work for me to do here, so I guess I can go pretty much any time I want, I just don’t know when that will be.

Oh, and Gus’s birthday was today! Sounds like the party was pretty exhausting, from what Robert says. Gus had fun, though, and that’s what matters most. And now he’s five, wow, what a thought. And he rides a two-wheeler, another milestone achieved while I was gone. How things have changed in the last three weeks. I really can’t get my head around it all.

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