And so we had the perfect holiday season.
Thanksgiving posted below. Then, a Christmas dinner with my parents and the children a week early. The following Saturday, “Santa”. On Monday we went to court and the judge awarded me *everything*. Very healing and validating after almost 4 years of no child support. The next day the babies left for a visit; on Christmas I was without them having my first “adult” yuletide with 11 others. Later that week The Love’s adult children moved to their own home. The babies (well, I wonder why I call children 14, 13, 10, and 6 “babies”) came home with glee, no anger, no tears, no grief. On New Years’ we combined it with a football party for our Seminoles and had a big group of friends. Teenagers laughed and played poker and listened to old 45’s from the 70’s. Adults ate and drank champagne. Our team won.
Somewhere in there some kind of threshold was crossed.
We are happy. And giddy, the kind of early love that you expect not to be revisited by…except we continually do. After a year of being “happily unmarried” and gathering critical information and analysis only possible in a mature relationship, I find myself on a precipice of sorts.
It’s because he’s as in love with the children as he is with me. And this, when one is part of a package deal, is the hinge. In the previous week, the air is different, the pace is different, the very road we are traversing seems different.
Part of me is afraid. But mostly, I am sticking to my program, going One Day At A Time, and trusting in the rightness of Time itself. I always knew it would be right when it was right. I believe that. And if it doesn’t come as soon as it feels like it will, that’s okay. Life is so good right now that I have no reason to complain.
And the icon, you may remember the icon I wrote about, when I was sure I heard it speak to me in August. And then in September was granted the miracle of healing I needed.
This is my parish. The Jesus icon on the right is the one.
On January 1st I was standing in church with The Love. It was his name day, for St. Basil, and he was the Reader. His sonorous chant is like a warm blanket of comfort to me; it’s something I hear every night when we pray, when we read. I’ve never prayed with anyone but him before, finding it too intimate and too in need of trust to allow for that vulnerability. Hearing him in church was sort of like sunshine. Like a blessing. Knowing he loves me and I him and that we are in such a wonderful place right now was almost too much to contain. Kind of a “my cup runneth over” moment. I could feel the eyes of that icon ahead of me.
I have not taken communion since October. This is because I haven’t been to confession. And I can’t do that until I am sorry. And I can’t be sorry for what I need to be. And I can’t make myself be sorry. And I can’t go back to confession one more time with that same conundrum.
Much wrestling has come through this. And after the wrestling, a peace that has carried me over the past months of weekly liturgies, of abstaining from the cup out of reverence for What Must Come First.
And then I stood there before that icon and the tangle began again. I am thirsty.
I want the Blessing to honestly take communion with The Love. I want the removal of the need to be sorry for something that should be sacrament. I want to stand in honesty and drink the cup and eat the bread and be One.
Jesus and I (and I’m sorry for how charismatic that sounds) went over old ground.
Then I looked up. The Jesus icon has his hand raised in blessing.
Read it again. “his hand raised in blessing.”
It wasn’t audible. It was a Knowing. The blessing will come. It has come, it is coming. Orthodox time, cyclical as it is. The blessing is right there before me every week. It’s an image, an icon. A projection like the photos we keep of loved ones. I take this as a promise.
Today it’s raining. It’s an ordinary day in the life. Children are playing, I’ve been working, dinner is cooking. Quiet assurance is an undercurrent that supports the otherwise mundane routines of our lives. The confidence of knowing all will be well because all is well is a miracle.