The senior citizen hall was offering classes on Zentangle this week. The brochure said: “Zentangle is a relaxing and fun way to make beautiful images using repetitive patterns with just a pen and paper.” Now that I’ve tried it I call it addictive doodling. I can’t stop tangling! They say it’s a cheap hobby but don't fall for that promise. Already I’ve ordered two books on the subject and have been to an art supply store to buy specialized ink pens. No one-size-fits-all pens for me. Zentangling has come in handy. though. At the monthly union meeting I attended yesterday they had speakers from our healthcare trust, our insurance carriers and Medicare and I tangled my way through an hour’s worth of their boring speeches.
A very thick letter came in the mail addressed to Don this week. It was from Social Security and on the envelope in big black letters it said, “If your name is not in the address box don’t open this letter. Return to sender.” The funeral director notified their office of Don's death as required by law, they already have a copy of his death certificate and S.S. hasn’t been depositing checks to his account since January. Why on earth is the government sending out letters to people they should know don’t reside any where on earth---and why this long after the event of Don’s passing away? But I follow the rules of life and sent the curious envelope back unopened even though I can’t quit thinking about what could possibly have been inside. I should have Zentangled the crap out of the back of the envelope first and given them something to think about back at the Social Security office. Who did that and what the heck is it?
The week was filled with other reminders that Don is getting purged from the world of the living. Getting a magazine subscription renewal notice in the mail, for example, had an emotional price tag attached. It was also time to re-order checks from the bank and it hit me I needed to have Don’s name removed from the address header. You can think your grieving period is over but things like these let you know that grief is not like a Spanx knock off that entraps you temporarily and then you never have to see the dang thing again. Grief is more like a tangle of lines weaving in and out of our routine forming a pattern that is as old as time itself. And would we want it any other way? We live. We love. We suffer loss then we find acceptance walking the same path that others have walked time and time again. There is comfort in the pattern, even in its unpredictability---and in the knowledge that we had a love worth grieving. Even when the sadness of grief sneaks up on us when we least expect it. ©