Blog a la Cart

Month: December, 2017

XXVIII

Hi, Mom,

It’s that time of year. Your dining room table is covered in envelopes and stamps and pens and ribbons and tissue and gift bags. We’ve got Santa’s workshop humming along chez Cart. The holidays are going to forever be mixed emotionally with your absence. I carry such nostalgia for the happy memories of Christmas’s past of which you played such an intimate roll. It’s difficult to imagine how we continue to spread joy in the face of such loss. And yet, we do. In fact, with even more resolve, and intention, and love. For we are more acutely aware than ever of how much there is to lose. How much there is to celebrate. How important it is to give thanks and be present.

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In your honor, we created another family holiday card, wishing peace and gentleness to all. This year has been challenging for our entire nation, for the whole world, and the individual I grief I feel is one facet of many complex experiences and communal heartache we’re weathering as a country. In these past two years, I have learned to carry the world with more gentleness, to lead with more kindness, and to try, even on the darkest days, to celebrate light, and joy, and love.

As always, Minted had a simple yet beautiful design that spoke to this message I wanted to share.

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Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.

I had a peace sign necklace made from pieces of your jewelry collection following your death, and this card is one more nod to the peace I seek in a world so very different than I ever could have imagined.

We miss you desperately. I wish you were here, sitting around your dining room table, sipping champagne and stuffing envelopes as “The Nutcracker” plays in the background. But we carry on thanks to memories of your vibrant, lion-hearted spirit

143 Your Ashley

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XXVII

Hi, Mom,

I’m currently curled up on the couch with your snotty, phlegmy, pathetic grandson by my side watching marathon episodes of “Cars.” He requested that we get “cozy,” so we’re buried under blankets, snuggled up side by side. You always said the upside of us being sick as kids was how dang sweet we’d become, and boy is it true. He is disgusting, but very, very sweet.

We’re winding down from two busy, beautiful, celebratory weekends. While so festive and filled with love, I just miss you so dang much. After everyone departed this morning, I found myself carrying such a pit in my stomach. When all the noise is gone, I’m left with the devastating reality of your absence. Thanksgiving was another delicious, family affair with all of Jake’s family in the mix. And this weekend we once again watched the girls dance in “The Nutcracker” and Michelle and Dellie and our chosen family rallied together to support the girls. It was so lovely to have the house brimming with activity and love, but again so palpable that you should be a part of the energy. The memory of you is never going to be sufficient.

Sunny misses you particularly so. She’s really feeling your death during these big weekends. You made such an impact in the too brief six years you were her grandmother, and it’s fucking unfair that she has to live without you, too. You are her top request on her Christmas list to Santa. She understands that it’s not a realistic gift, but it’s her deepest desire regardless.

She drew a photo the other day of you as an angel with song lyrics about how she just wanted you for Christmas. She sat crying as she colored.

“Sometimes it feels good to cry. Because it shows me how much I loved her.”

Ain’t that the truth.

143 Your Ashley