Labor Day Weekend:
In the past, this holiday was spent in the company of my Grandma and Grandpa Winslow, and the rather large family of grandchildren and cousins.
It was my grandfather’s birthday weekend.
As a child there were games to be played, running to be done and food to be eaten. These holiday weekends were some of the most memorable spent with my dad’s side of the family. Sure, there was Thanksgiving and Christmas, but there was something about Labor Day. Something special. THAT was always at their house.
When my grandmother passed away, we still gathered and had good times, but a little of the joy was gone.
As time went by, cousins grew, time became more precious to all of us, for one reason or another. As grandpa grew older, and was a little more tired of being alone each year, the crowd lessened and it became more about upkeep and being able to do things around the house for him. Eventually, I drifted away from this as well. I always regretted that.
I also regretted that I never got to really know my Grandma and Grandpa Winslow, the way I got to my Grandma and Grandpa Lord. It’s what happens, though. You tend to spend a lot of time with your mother’s parents, a little less with your father’s.
Whether with my original family, or the family that I began after college, this weekend was always spent with them. It was spent, maybe not with as many people as when I was young, but with just as much love and laughter.
This year, it is not spent that way, for the first time in my 47 years of life. No cookout. No family. I sit up in my room with Ian, my long haired, orange tabbie. The only family that made this move with me.
The other thing that made this weekend a memorable experience growing up, and into adulthood, is that it also happened to be my Grandfather’s birthday. September 4. This continued to be a special date when my daughter was born.
This is also marking the first time in 22 years, that I have not been there to celebrate this birthday with her.
This weekend, one that used to hold so much joy, so much food, so much love and so much friendship, is now filled with emptiness and sorrow. A microwave panini instead of a cookout. No family.
This will take a lot of getting used to, as other holidays approach. I am not sure I am up for this, or strong enough to deal with it.
We’ll see what happens along the way…..