Making do

Growing up in rural Nova Scotia often meant making do until we got into Amherst to get groceries on payday week.

We were a family of sweet tooths so come Wednesday night it was not uncommon for mom to make us some simple homemade egg nog as the treat cupboard grew bare.

She called this “making do” until grocery day.

I found myself using that same phrase in a text to a friend recently; it was concerning Patrick.

I just want him to be at peace, I wrote. We will make do down here.

I always, always picture Pat resting and happy, wherever he is in his heavenly space. I cannot think God intends our departed loved ones, whose struggles on earth are done, to continue struggling in their non-mortal state.

Thus I pray that he is fishing his favorite rivers, and spending time with loved ones. It is also not improbable that he is helping out wherever help is needed. That was always his way.

We can make do down here without him.

In no way am I playing the martyr when I say this either. I would much rather have mortal Patrick with us right now. His sweet smile. His boyish charm, wearing his baseball cap. But, here we are, so– it is his time to be content. And while he would be the first to say he had a wonderful life going on, it was not without its serious struggles, and I think of those so much now, in light of our own trauma. I do not think it would be right then that he be living our sadness and our pain. He is not.

I have spoken to you about finally experiencing Pat’s presence in an earlier blog. I have craved for his attention in my loneliest hours and seemingly got nothing.

I have realized that his voice does come through on the clearest of days, however; after I have had a chance to get out, to take a drive, or on the walk back from the elementary school after being with the littles.

It’s like he chooses the moments when my reception is at its best. I’ve a clear mind and a full heart. He always loved to see me happy, and laughing, and doing things.

Because we laughed together everyday. I am not so sure that it wasn’t his objective in life.

This past Saturday I hauled out a selection from my favorite collection of craft magazines and went to work green taping pages of possible projects. Bea worked with me while we drank coffee, and ate toast and peanut butter in bed.

It was us making do.

I think if there is one thing Patrick’s death and this pandemic has instilled in us, it is the fact that this is the bowl of cherries we have got, so what can we do with them? And in our case personally, it has to do with what can we do to always commemorate the man who kept us going and brought us up when we were not so good.

We make do. We make. We draw. We rearrange furniture. We listen to crazy YouTube-ers of our daughter’s generation, that Pat would have absolutely loved.

We build a life that works for us, right now.

And when we do that , we find him.

Praise God. And our Saint, Patrick.

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