Gifts from the Ashtray

In a recent blog, I mentioned the ashtray of our emotional garbage.  The residue that we allow to linger and grime up our lives.  If there were some kind of cosmic  “Spot Shot®’  that we could douse our lives and cleanse, then every version of a therapist in the world would be out of a vocation.

This was going to be yet another pedantic rant about how emotionally hard my childhood was.  White bread on the outside and turdburgers on the inside.  Woe is me, my parents didn’t understand me even though I was the precursor to something like a trophy kid.  The subject, quite frankly, is overused and boring.

And then, on the other side of the country, with the finish line in sight, there were two explosions, twelve seconds apart…

No more whining.

I usually keep these thoughts to myself.  But as much as I have inadvertently rubbed some of that emotional ash on my daughter, I can wipe it off.  I can do this because I still have arms.  I can stand and reach for her to help us smooth out the bumps in our love for one another — because I still have two legs.  I’m here.  And so is she.  And so are my husband and my sons.  And we can all get up, at any given time, and hug each other.  There are many people who are no longer intact.  They were merely giving themselves a life challenge that would reward them when they crossed the finish line.  With loved ones waiting with hugs and love.

A couple of weeks ago, at Easter Brunch, a dear friend of mine and I were basking in the camaraderie while her youngest was running around amped on sugar with her four year old cousin.  These little charmers were racing around the place and her daughter would periodically stop and hug mommy.

“Mommy is base!”

And she was reassured repeatedly that yes, indeed, Mommy was base.  And if you got to base, you were safe… And Mommy would always keep you safe at base.

To the extent that we can.  And I pray every day that we can to ANY extent.

There may have been a tube in Dad’s throat where the money and sanity was swallowed.  But that is WAS.  The past is immutable.  What IS, are my blessings.  Blessings that are richer and more important than anything else.  And an intact family is the biggest one of all.  What I left in the ashtray of my childhood, through magic and luck and kismet, I have created in the most important of times.  The gift, the “present”.  I’ll always be “base”.  Hopefully I will live up to that honor and gift.

No more whining.  And I will stand on my two intact legs and greet my children at the door and hug them with my two intact arms.

Blessings to all.  Glass cleaner is a good tool for cleaning ash and allowing a clearer view.

About marysigmond

After four generations in Chicago, a big city transplant to the "wild west" of western South Dakota in 2004. Mom, domestic goddess, CEO of my world and fond of musing about what is becoming the second half of my life. It's a big old goofy world.
This entry was posted in Finding Normal, From Where I Live. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Gifts from the Ashtray

  1. Jan Myhre says:

    Lumps in my throat, Mary. Lumps in my throat! You write beautifully. ❤

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