Mrs. A. Lincoln

I had hoped by now that my dark cloud would have lifted. I had hoped that it was a partly cloudy day in a mostly sunny week. The reeling has not stopped and now I am getting angry and indignant. I want to be able to move through the day without the tugging of sadness on my sleeve. I want to speak to my children without the inner motivational speaking that forces a happy tone. I can’t even fake it for Facebook.

Now you know that is bad.

After dropping my two oldest children off at school this morning I stopped in to visit with my Father in Law. He immediately set to work preparing a breakfast of eggs, fried potatoes and toast. He knows that fried potatoes are my favorite and he usually calls me on the phone joking that my potatoes are ready. He warmed my coffee cup twice and fed the baby small slices of fruit. When he left he told me I could stay as long as I wanted and I did.

In the light passing of conversation and the warmth of a house steadily being covered by snow flakes I remembered something forgotten. Even as my spirit was discontent and uneasy I felt comforted. My father-in-law is a man of decision. Not in the way of great political thinkers or entrepreneurs. He moves into what is best regardless of his obstacles.

I am currently enjoying a fictional novel about and named, Mary, Mrs. A. Lincoln. I love historical fiction and since my mother-in-law ‘knew that I would love it’, I went against my rules of order and disregarded a stack of already borrowed library books to begin it. I have probably heard more than my share of information about President Abraham Lincoln but his wife has never crossed my mind. She had a fierce need for the world to see the goodness of her husband, suffered the loss of three sons and a husband who was assassinated and finally was wrongly committed to an asylum by her own first born son.

Throughout her life she struggled to rein in her “excessive passions” while trying to mourn with dignity. She had a large portion of her own very dark days. Chapter after chapter, she fought her way back. She dove into having another child to substitute the lost affection of another. She “unsexed” herself by overly involving herself in politics to do everything she could to ensure that the nation recognized the good of her husband. She pushed her self through doing the tedious of household chores just to keep her focus anchored to her priorities.

I hate schedules. I don’t like to have to do anything. However, I can see her logic…for someone who was eventually committed. The few spots of joy I have felt in the course of the past week have involved my one year old who now knows where his nose is, my four year old who wants only to be physically connected to my person at all times and my eldest son who I can now have a conversation with.

For a fictional crazy person’s account, I think there is wisdom in just doing the next thing. I will allow myself the gift of rest as I finish the last few chapters of this book. When I am done, I will focus all of my energy on doing the next thing. I expect that the first few tasks that I force myself to do will hurt a little but it won’t be worst than pouting under this cloud.

I am now deciding the weather and it will be partly sunny.

2 thoughts on “Mrs. A. Lincoln

  1. I love this idea – deciding that the weather will be partly sunny – especially because you didn't say perfectly sunny! You've inspired me to decide my weather today too…

  2. I am so glad you are inspired by the idea of deciding the weather. Saying it would be perfectly sunny would have been a stretch and I am being honest here. Baby steps:)

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