"I dream of a hard and brutal mysticism in which the naked self merges with the nonhuman world and somehow survives...Paradox and bedrock."-Edward Abbey

31 March 2010

As the Fist Holiday Approaches...

I could say it's because I've not even been remotely Judeo-Christian since I was at least fifteen, and a practicing heretical Tibetan Buddhist since my early twenties, that holidays, like Easter, don't mean that much to me. Oh, sure, I acknowledge it out of respect of my family and it's an opportunity to get together, have a few cocktails, and eat lamb. However, when I've missed the holiday for whatever reason, it's not hurt my feelings.

This year is different. I find myself looking to Easter with a nervous anticipation. Here's the holiday, which Christians celebrate as a day of resurrection, and it will be the first holiday my family's gotten together since my mother stepped into the bardo.

In a case of de ja vu, six years ago, Easter was the first family holiday after my grandmother died. Both my mother and I were morose on the subject, and we numbed our emotion with beer and whiskey. Strangely, as close as I was to my grandmother, this year's Easter seems so much more profound. Much more melancholy.

I wonder if it's because of the simple fact my mother birthed me. Or if it's the fact what would have been my parents thirty-eighth wedding anniversary was just a few weeks ago. Perhaps it's just because, and there is no simple answer.

My daughter made sure she could come. With my x being such the devout Catholic, I wasn't really sure if I should have bothered. My little girl took the initiative, pulling the look, bitch! My grandmother just died this past winter and this is the first time I'll get to see my Dad's side of the family since the memorial, and it's important, so if you don't fucking mind card.

Okay, I might have paraphrased some of that...

As is typical for family gatherings within my bloodlines, we're all expected to bring something to contribute to the meal. My brother is being a pain in the ass. My sister is being neurotic. My father is making the arrangements to get the lamb.

I worry/wonder what it'll be like. If there will be tears or stories or if, like the metaphoric elephant in the room, we'll all notice the specter-like void where a four-thousand year old chinless woman should be, and we'll not say anything about it. I wonder if my father will bring whiskey and encourage my brother, Whitie, and myself to join him in a tumbler or more. If it'll be a good time or a solemn occasion.

And I won't know until I get there, some five risings and settings of the sun. My talents might be many and varied, but I don't do clairvoyance. Here and now, I can theorize and what if until I drive myself mad by chewing on the inside of my skull, but it won't do much good. All I can do, is take a deep breath, focus, get my reptile zen on, and take what comes.

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