And now back to normal

or as they say here “normaal” with an extra a pronounced so you really get the emphasis. Yesterday, it rained and rained and today it was more than 80 degrees and sunny. And today all the orange bunting, flags and soccer balls are nowhere to be seen. Eliza and I watched the game around the corner at the Vliegertje. Eliza is a bit of a sports statistics freak – her complaint that unlike cricket the stats available in football (soccer) are not readily collected and so you are missing half the point of the game. I just watch because it is fun.

Yesterday afternoon I got to hear the memories of Marianne’s father and the way he touched their lives and his expressions. I spent most of the service trying not to cry and not succeeding. I felt very much like a sponge. But I examined afterwards on the ride home and it wasn’t grief about my mom but rather the awareness of what grief feels like and how it would affect their entire family. Perhaps the way to say it is that I was grieving for them.

In thinking about it, it also helped me let go of a “should”. As in “you should hold yourself together to be supportive for others”. But in reality, that has nothing to do with the empathy and support you can give someone. I know that grief is intensely personal and I don’t know all of the ways my friend will struggle with it. But I do know that I will be able to meet her where she is at and just being there instead of thinking about how I should be supporting.

On the way back yesterday, I passed a field where there were some young cows. In the pouring rain, two of them were head to head trying to push each other around. For some reason, it really reminded me of my twin brothers. Living here, I get a lot of opportunity to see cows. If you have never seen a cow run, it is fun to watch. Especially when they are together. I am always surprised that they can get that much weight up into the air. And some of the sheep have had their first shearing of the year so they are suddenly looking much slimmer. I like living in the city but there is enough of me that finds the idea of a small farm so appealing. It is on my list of things to do this year to find out what a cow smells like up close. I wonder if they smell like horses or have their own special cow fragrance?

Going to bed early tonight, kind of worn out. The dogs are super happy to hear that.

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