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Nash, Edith / Practice the here and now: selected writings of Edith Nash

Nash, Edith
Christmas morning,   pp. 59-60

Page 60

60Sara Lee, although Pepperidge Farm is better but not always available where
I live.
 I open very few packages, one from each daughter, chosen with exquisite
attention to my real self, either homemade or a book I might have written
— it speaks to me so clearly. One year both daughters sent me Home
Cooking by Laurie Colwin, and I wept with joy at their understanding of where
I was and what I was doing.
 My old women friends who have me on their Christmas list for small remembrances
have mostly died, since I generally survive my age-mates. So I don't have
to wonder where to put the Christmas ornaments, candle holders, or mysterious
kitchen gadgets that accumulate in my arsenal.
 I relish recent communications — telephone calls, E-Mails, whatever
comes. Plants bloom in the living room. The tree is decorated with all our
family mementos but I didn't do it myself. My household helpers have an artist's
eye and hang them with love and remembrance, many made by daughters and grandchildren.
 I feel at home. I look out the window at the frozen landscape, watch the
squirrels chase each other around the bird feeders, admire the snowy river.
I think about anything and everything, write in my journal, wonder about
the land above -. the sky inhabited by people I have known and treasured.
 When either daughter asks if I want to visit them or have them come to be
with me on this loaded day, I say, "If you are alone it is better to be alone,"
and I rest in my skin, homeless no longer.

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