One of our family Christmas traditions is to do a jigsaw puzzle or two. This year I treated us to a new one, and it turned out to be fiendishly difficult. One of the problems with this puzzle is that the beautiful hues and brushstrokes really need to be seen in natural light, of which there is precious little at Christmastime. One day I was vacuuming, and seriously considering giving up on it (a first!) when I heard a terrible noise in the vacuum cleaner. I took the bag apart but didn’t find a puzzle piece. So then my curiosity was piqued: I wanted to find out whether I’d just vacuumed part of it up! So I persevered.
School began on the 9th of January and the Dafter started back to school as best she could, even with this terrible fatigue and illness still dogging her. Day by day I worked on the puzzle when I had a chance and the sun was out, and it became a metaphor for getting through this time. Some days I only found one piece that fit. But it was one piece more, just as the Dafter had done one more lesson, or managed to get dressed and out of the house one more time. I told myself that piece by piece, the puzzle would come together. This is where I’d reached on January 20th, after four weeks of puzzling:
And then suddenly one day there seemed to be a breakthrough, and I finished the rest of it in four days. And guess what?
Clearly I had vacuumed up a piece of it. But I felt that the metaphor still holds – we will get there (wherever we’re going: healing in whatever form it takes) but we’re not creating something perfect, and that’s fine.
The Dafter is still very unwell, but managed four (partial) mornings at school this past week, the third week back. Her new class has not exactly welcomed her with open arms, probably because she is so much older than they are, and she isn’t there much. Going to school has been pretty daunting for her, especially as she has to go when she doesn’t feel well. We now have an appointment to see a pediatrician, on February 22nd. So on we go. Thank you to everyone who has left an encouraging remark during the last months. I have memorised some of them!