This is a letter to martinis, chicken liver pate and Girl Scout cookies. To late night games of Blitz and Hangman on my Iphone. This is a letter to the small corner of the bed that I unfold each night, a cotton envelope that I slip myself into. This is a letter to the ritual of two blue tablets of Sleep Eaze from Walgreens. To the bottle of Prosecco in my refrigerator just in case. To the bulging clothes drawers – bathing suits and sexy lingerie – woolen mittens – clothes bought in haste – an attempt to change my life. To the old cashmere castaways from my glamorous aunt– clothes she’s worn forever – 30 years- still in perfect condition – perfumed and luxurious – her walk in closet in L.A. soft paint chips arranged by color.
Here’s to the must-dos, the will-dos, the should-haves and the when-I-have-time fors: cleaning out my closets, paying bills, get the tires checked. And here’s to that bathtub and its siren song of love. One summer, the worst summer, I got in nearly every day – it was the only safe place; contained and warm and wet. And here’s to the letter my then 10-year-old daughter taped to the bathroom wall directly across from where I lay. “Mommy” she wrote, “we love you, who wouldn’t?” And to the cigarette I smoked after that bath, out on the porch in my summer skirt, relieved that my husband had taken the girls for a ride and that I could be alone again. I could hardly tolerate myself. It was even harder to be with them.
And so this is a letter to forgiveness, to the pate and the martinis, the Girl Scout cookies and to the late night Iphone games which surprised my Mother last week in L.A. when we shared a bed. “I wouldn’t have taken you for a gamer,” she told me as we lay there in the dark. “Oh, but I am,” I said, eyes never lifting from the screen, thumbs hitting bright blue jewels that popped and exploded in the dark.
A letter to forgiveness for all the ways I have tried to calm down and come back. And to my tin heart that actually beats, to my stiff legs in the morning from so many walks and where I’m going I don’t know, and compassion for that too – and for the love – can we call it love? Let’s call it love. There was always love