Tuesday, December 22, 2009

just Heidi and me: a few thoughts to end the year

It's late. I'm sitting with my dog on the couch. Tonight Mom came home from a meeting and came bearing the mail, specifically Christmas cards. I think that is one of my favorite parts of the season: opening and reading the Christmas cards. I still need to send a few out. Tonight we got one from my Aunt Kathy and Uncle Craig, which was cute because their two daughters are so small. We got another one from England, from our former nanny Liz. I wrote her a letter earlier this year, which she responded to months later, but it was nice to hear her mention it in the note. I'll have to write her another.

Another came from a nurse Mom used to work with at Jewish Hospital. The picture is usually of her, her husband, and their dog. This year it was just her and a new dog. It turns out they got divorced after 18 years of marriage. 18 years with someone and then, it's gone. From the way the letter was phrased, it sounded like the marriage had been on the downfall for a few years now. It's very sad. Dad made some comment about how this is why kids are necessary in marriage, how having kids taught him how to Love different ways, how kids were the best and hardest part of marriage. I hope I have a huge family; it's definitely not for everyone, but I think it is the best way to raise a family. ("The more, the merrier!" as Dad always likes to say.)

Sitting with Heidi (my doggie dear), I wonder if my future family will have such a wonderful pet. We had mostly hamsters growing up, pre-Heidi. I think Heidi is a perfect example of an unplanned addition to the family: she was abandoned, found in a public restroom by the dog park during one of the hottest summers. She was only 3 months old and the vet said that if we hadn't taken her in, she would have died. From the first day, though, her presence in the family was felt and embraced. It was like she had always been with us; she had always been a Robison. I remember my grandfather suggested we get rid of Heidi because he was allergic to her hair. The kids went in an uproar and protested. Heidi is obviously still around, but the experience certainly proved her unifying powers and the strong attachment and love we all feel for her. I might grumble over the Heidi hair on my clothes, but it can be quite comforting to find at school when I've been gone a while.

This will most likely be my last post of the year, unless I feel the need to share more about my Christmas break at home. Cousins party tomorrow, Reconciliation Wednesday night, Christmas Eve at my Uncle Mark's house with my dad's side, Christmas at my maternal grandparents' house with my mom's side, leave for Florida Saturday till early January. In between, I'll be running, reading, spending time with the siblings, taking Heidi on walks, working on applications, larding, working on my thesis and potentially seeing friends. I don't know what is wrong with me, but I can't bring myself to leave the house. I normally see people within hours of being home. It's been almost 3 days now. It's not that I don't want to see people; I would just rather be with my family. I saw a lot of people over Fall break and Thanksgiving break. I think I'm starting to pull away from my home friends, as much as I love them. I'm not going to stop being friends with them (no one gets off the hook that easily!), but I am prioritizing my family over them, which is something I should have done more over past breaks. I think it's the growing up in me. I'm preparing myself for a whole wide unknown and at the end of the day, I'd like to know I was a good big sister for the little kids, Katie through Megan.

I should go to bed soon; I went on a long run today and I am going to feel it tomorrow. Trevor wants to go to mass (non-Catholic friend who likes going to mass, so we go together), I need to work on Christmas presents and my thesis outline, as well as go to the library to find two books to review for next semester, so tomorrow will be busy, busy, busy!

Heidi is twitching a little--that means she is dreaming :) Happy holidays, friends! Enjoy home.

This song is stuck in my head:

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