Monday, March 09, 2009

Of sauce making and time flying

Today, I've a tale of sauce and socks.

So it's no secret that I've been a bit unsettled. A bit restless. A bit lost. The beginning of the year pretty much always does that to me. I always make big plans to start something new and shiny and fantastic...and my life always finds a way to shut it down. Or at least that's how it seems. Truth being that I have a way of convincing myself that if I can only get more organized, more regimented, more controlled I can somehow manage to be perfect. Lose the weight. Turn the house into Pottery Barn. Banish dust bunnies for all time. Perhaps master karate or re-master yoga. Pick up a PhD or 2. Be a Super Hero of a Mom and Rock Star volunteer, yet still have time for all of the yarn play, baking from scratch and obsessive reading I can handle.

Yeah right.

What life has a way of doing is bringing me back to reality. I have this regular, recurring date with facing my limitations in an often stark manner. And it always, always pisses me totally and completely off. Because somehow the propaganda gets me. I should be able to have it all. I should be able to do it all. And that's a lie. Life is compromise. Give and take. A series of trade-offs.

And for some reason I need an annual reminder. OK, perhaps bi-annual.

So that's where I've been.

Now, where do the sauce and socks come in?

The sauce is a sop. It's my grandmother's recipe. (or non-recipe really as the making of it was distilled into my synapses at a very early age) As is the lasagna. The Italian Wedding soup. Pasta i Fagioli. Garlic bread. Carbonara. Alfredo. The tiny fried dough balls drizzled in honey and topped with sprinkles. (they have a name I cannot recall...) The things I turn to when I'm down. Yes, for me self-love = serious cooking. (hence the need to lose the weight...) The results are spectacular and bring much praise. Making these dishes, I shine. And eventually that turns me around. The house may be a cluttered mish-mash, I may be well padded, things may fall through my mental cracks well more often that I am comfortable with...but I make some truly fine Italian nosh.

So, there's been a bit of cookery going down.

Now for the socks. The socks, they've been living in a quite dark corner for almost a year now, stuffed there to keep me from thinking of them...and the things bound to them. They were started for round 2 of Sock Madness last year. They're a quite ingenious and inventive pattern...fully reversable, exactly the same inside and out.

The pattern came out whilst we were in Florida on vacation last year, a fact I thought would most likely knock me out of play. Traveling with 3 kids under 7 generally does not translate to much free time. And I was right. I might have made it had not one of our dogs needed to be put down the day after we left. Talk about guilt. I was a wreck. My husband got deathly ill. We powered through the week, me pouring all of my stress into these socks so I could hold it together and take care of everyone when we were not in a place to fall apart. By the time we got home the kids were sick as well. Really, really, really sick. And I spent many late, sleepless nights surrounded by a huge void in my home and knocking off row after row of these socks. By the time they recovered, I of course got it and was sicker than I ever remember being. By the time it was all over, I couldn't even look at the socks without being overcome with yuck. So away they went. And I promptly forgot about them. Convienent, no?

Having decided to tackle Sock Madness again this year, a few weeks ago I started pulling things out - reclaiming needles, unearthing sock yarn. And I found the socks. And I cried. And cried. And totally freaked out the other dog by hugging her a bit too much and a bit too often. The grief I hadn't had time for last year had to play itself out, so I let it. And I started working on the socks again...and finished them. But I didn't want them. At all.

So, when my sister came to town last week I happily gifted them to her. They fit perfectly (as you can see above), better than they fit me actually. She loved them and claimed them as her own.

...and 4 hours later woke me with excrutiating abdominal pain. 7 hours in the ER on every narcotic known to mankind found her being admitted with a kidney stone and apparently intractible pain. 24 hours of that and she was home again. Fine.

Anyone know how to exorcise socks?