Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Crystal Glass

I fell asleep a bit ago. A needed nap. A place to escape to.

I woke to the sound of a dog barking. Not my dog, a neighbor's.

It jolted me awake. Too quickly. My brother-in-law had passed away this morning. My sister's husband. She died 17 years ago. He remarried. But he is still my brother-in-law.

My mind flashed to the date. March 21st! The first day of spring. My parent's anniversary. The day Elliot died. Soon it will be April, then May, and then Kyle will be a senior and Will will graduate elementary school.

I woke up too abruptly. Too many emotions running through my whirling brain.

There is the trip to Los Angeles to The Kid's Choice Awards next weekend. I will take Will and walk the orange carpet at my alma mater, UCLA's Pauley Pavilion.

Kyle went to the Kids' Choice Awards when he was three. He is in the video clip I attached with his cousin. She is now in law school. Kyle is in the front wearing a blue long sleeved shirt. They proudly wore balloons on their heads. Kyle cried when he found out he had to sit without a parent.

I worked for Nickelodeon just yesterday. No, it was a long time ago and far away. But the sweet memories of the best job I ever had linger. They linger especially today. I was so young and so sure that anything was possible. I was right. I get to walk my 13-year-old into a theater filled with screaming kids next weekend.

Earlier today, I watched as a mother I have known for many years stood teaching her daughter how to fill her tank with gas. She must be learning to drive. I remember this same mother, holding this young girl's hand, teaching her how to cross the street safely.

I placed two candles in crystal champagne glasses and lit them. They burn brightly and beautifully through cut glass. The glasses came from years ago, another country, a horrible conflict, millions of dead Jews. The glass is sharp and enduring. I feel like the glass. I wish my edges were a bit softer today. They are not.

Time passes, and this year has been filled with reminders.

Wonderful friends, a community of bloggers I do not know but trust, the love of my life, my children who make me laugh every single day (when I'm not screaming at them).

The glass survives, but we do not. I will hold the memories close, the feelings closer, and I will look to the sea to replenish my soul. I ask so much.


  1. Wow, Terry what a day. I love how you capture the fluidity of time: the past, the present, and the future all swirling around each other and interacting.

  2. Oh, I'm sorry about your brother-in-law.
    And wow, Kids Choice Awards? How cool is that.
    What you wrote about the crystal is beautiful.

  3. Sometimes we need to feel the edges before we can take time to enjoy the softness, don't we? I'm glad you took the time to hold "the memories close, the feelings closer" (and to share them with us).

  4. I never got the whole candle thing until I got older. Now I am comforted by the tiny flickering flame. I feel like I can feel my mom closer when I'm near a lit candle. Despite the fact Jeff is certain I will eventually burn the house down, I will continue to light them.

    As a matter of fact, I will go light a few right now. For me, and for you, my friend. I will think of you as I glance at them throughout the day today.


  5. I loved this Terry. All of it. So many emotions flickering like the flame you describe. Images of time passing and the present all wrapped into one.
    Great video... I'm sorry Kyle was so sad! It looked amazing!

    I'm so sorry about your BIL... hugs.

  6. This is lovely. As we age, and know more losses, the time we have with our children is bittersweet. The candles we light, on dates we will never forget, each year, as they burn for 24 hours.

    I, too, have candle holders for various rituals, many of which come from my mother or grandmother. One other, which I can see displayed from where I sit and write - 19th century, English. Solid. Another family celebrated its flame eight nights each year. It was my mother's favorite of all the ways of bringing light into the home. Into a dark home. Ironic, that it remains my favorite way to remember.

    Glad to have found your blog. (Amused at the linkage between teen boys and horror films. I understand... )