Thursday, November 23, 2006

TG 2006

Big Man had a project for school this year - a big piece of foamcore that we as a family were to fill with some sort of statement about our family.

I was at a loss, until we hit on the concept of a jigsaw puzzle. Big Man and Mr Three are maniacs for jigsaw puzzles. I printed a lot of pictures, old and new, of Bob's family and mine, and we cut them into jigsaw pieces and glued them onto the foamcore.

The pieces didn't all fit together perfectly. They overlapped and left gaps, and as we were gluing, Big Man explained to me that families are the same way - not all the pieces fit together perfectly, and sometimes you lose a piece, but when you find the piece again it'll fit into the puzzle ok.

A pretty simplistic observation, but looking at this family picture, I feel it. My brother didn't come home for Thanksgiving - he has a de facto family in Seattle. My cousin Andrew is in Tucson in grad school, and three other cousins were with their father for the holiday. Their mom, my dad's sister, came to be with us. My mother's sister died some years ago, but her husband and son are here. Cousin Jonathan had the heaves and stayed at the hotel with his mom/grandmother, but his dad/grandfather, my mom's cousin Bill, is here, smiling, with three of his kids. Jonathan's mom is in Atlanta. My cousin Nash's wife is from Tokyo. My husband is from Cleveland. Rachel's husband is from Minneapolis. God knows where the dog's from.

In this picture, Mr. Librarian and I are holding our children down with great effort. They didn't want to be in the picture. I can only imagine the effort it will take in the future to even get them in the same room with us.

It's not a complete puzzle - the complete puzzle would fill the whole world. But these pieces - 17 people and a dog - fit together tonight to make a picture of love, and birth, and intention.

I try not to get overwhelmed by sentiment. But Happy Thanksgiving, everybody. (thanks Rae for the picture)