Connected Again

August 24, 2009

Happy to report we now have internet access and are slowly working our way through e-mails and blogs. Also still working on settling in to life here. Trying to establish a daily routine (all of us going to bed way too late). Trying to learn our way around the local area and adjusting to the Italian style of driving. Happy to have finally found a store where we could buy trash cans and a mirror. Starting to work in the yard and make it feel like our own. Meeting neighbors. Eating gelato whenever possible. Days filled with small tasks that aren't quite as simple or easy in unfamiliar surroundings.

Busy days followed by nights full of vivid dreams. Ever since our arrival I have been dreaming about my dad. Sometimes waking up convinced that he is still alive. Heart pounding and excited to call him quickly followed by the sad awareness that it was just another dream. Despite the strange cycle of excitement and sadness I welcome these dreams. I feel closer to my dad here. I think that part of it is our rural setting. I am once again living in a place where I see the horizon. Living in a place surrounded by fields, farmers, and small country roads. Things that remind me of home. And mixed into those familiar components are many new and foreign ones...olive trees, cactus, and an active volcano. It feels like a new stage of grief. Instead of being filled with anger, it's a mix of yearning and connecting. Never thought I would move to Sicily and feel my dad's presence in such an intense way. In the months following my dad's death, I had to consciously push aside the invasive images of those final weeks of pain and suffering. I dreaded those images of him. And then it all seemed to go blank. I didn't have anything. I stayed up late looking for photos. And now a new and unexpected stage of seeing him each night. Seeing him in ways I want to remember him. It's jolting, comforting, and sometimes feels like teasing. I have a feeling that our time in Sicily will be filled with other unanticipated connections and re-connections. It's one of the things I welcome about living in a new place. It seems to shake things up on many different levels.
Laurie said...

"Eating gelato whereever possible." Good girl! Told you that was the most important! :-) Get creative with the flavors. Good to see you back on the net...we miss you!

boatbaby said...

I completely know what you mean by having to push away the images of a parent who suffered at the end of life. For the longest time I could only remember my mother sick. I just couldn't conjure what she was like healthy and vibrant. And I too had the blank. I haven't had the deep reconnection yet, but reading your words gives me some peace and hope.

katy said...

So glad to see your post this afternoon. Sounds like this move to Sicily is going to be an important one for you. Maybe this reconnection will give you some peace about your dad's passing.

Pam said...

We had book club Sat and we all missed you terribly. Very little talk of the book but lots of visual humor.....most of it involving Laureen!!! September's book is The Good Earth.....maybe we can Skype you in. We've set our book reading list for the rest of the year. I think Madi has it posted (or will have soon) on the book club blog. Glad to have you back and accessible. Hugs, Pam
p.s. I bought me a brighton bracelet on ebay!!!!

Unknown said...

Just over a year ago, our house was destroyed in a fire. When, it was deemed safe to enter the house, the first thing I did was try to find the letters my mom had written my dad when he was away on course. (he was in the Canadian Army). I did find them and it was a relief as I felt a connection through those written words. Our photos were also saved, so that was a blessing. Glad to see you are once again connected!

Unknown said...

The comment from Felix is actually me, Betty. Felix is my husband.

Mom2Isabel said...

I, too, smiled at your gelato comment. I ate it at least once a day in Italy. The thought brought a smile to my face in remembering the Italian way of life: slow, lovely, centered on people rather than goals.
Your words about your dad spoke to me, especially this week, as my mom was hospitalized and is now in rehab. Life can get so insanely busy with daily, meaningless minutia that the most important things, like family, can be pushed aside in the clutter of just getting through each day.
Your words about your dad, and your continued journey of working through the grief, spoke deeply to me. Thank you for your honesty and vulnerability.
As Pam wrote, we sure did miss you Saturday at book club. What a gift you gave all of us in starting the group. Thank you. I signed up for Skype. Isabel has been waiting to see Mei Mei on the computer. We'll have to email and work out some sort of a schedule to chat.

Isabel is loving the Mercy Watson books. We listen to the audio tapes each night. I swear she has some of the books memorized. THe librarian cracked up last week when Isabel exclaimed (upon seeing one of the books), "Look Mom! It's the Mercy Watson Collection" in a perfect imitation of the person on the CD. Last night, after picking through her dinner and not eating much at all, I finally asked her what she WOULD eat. Her reply? "Buttered toast... like Mercy!"
You have impacted the lives of so many people Lucia...Me and my daughter just being among many.
Miss you, my friend.

Melissa said...

Wow, you're back online! Can't wait to hear more about your adventures in Italy... glad you made it safe.

Mom said...

I am so glad to see you you back to the blog! Very thoughtful about your Dad. It is amazing how many stages there are to grief and coming through it. Like your Dad said life is about the journey. We love you.
Can't wait to be able to Skype with you soon.

morninglight mama said...

Oh Lucia, you have such a poignancy to your writing, and even when it's clearly something difficult to articulate or talk about, I am always impressed with your ability to find the words to express things that I can't even fathom experiencing. I feel like there's nothing comforting I can say beyond that your words are so moving and such a great tribute to the relationship you had with your dad. Lovely.

Corinne said...

I think this post made me cry as much as I cried for you after he passed away. I forget how strange things connect us to those we love. I went to a bbq yesterday at the home of some people I don't know well - and their house smelled of my grandmother's coffee. It hit me like a ton of bricks how much I MISS HER. I wouldn't have thought such a random thing could bring her into my mind.

I LOVE when you post. I can't wait to see pictures of this new world you are living in :)

Dim Sum, Bagels, and Crawfish said...

Laurie: miss you, too. After you get Hannah start planning your trip so you can teach her all about gelato!

Boatbaby: sending you peace and hope. I tried to send you an e-mail but couldn't find a link on your blog.

Katy: I think Sicily will be an important place for us.

Pam: now we are bracelet twins. Miss you tons. Read "Lucky Girl" Just finished it and think it will be perfect for book club.

Betty: I am so sorry to hear about the fire. That must have been heartwrenching. What a relief to have those letters and photos.

Laureen: I miss you guys, too. Eat lots of buttered toast for us. I hope your mom is doing better. Lets skype soon.

Melissa: Glad to be back on-line. Now I need to get back onto the Nook. Trying to get September's book read but having a slow start.

Mom: we'll try to skype soon. Thank you for the kind words about my dad.

Dawn: thank you

Corinne: I am so sorry about your grandma. Strange how smells, tastes, sounds can do that to us. Sending you healing, peaceful thoughts. I like reading your posts, too. I have lots of catching up to do and I need to get back into the Nook.

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