I felt the darkness right about then. A lot isn't right around here. Our reward system of behavior management isn't working; B. is boycotting it, then attempting to wheedle the reward through tears, hypochondria, and fault-finding ("you owe me!"). Besides that, my husband is chronically overworked. My default assumption, even on the weekend, is "he's busy and he doesn't want to be bothered."
As for me, I had another obligation I didn't want to think about. I was 2/3 of the way through blowing it off.
I tiptoed up to the sewing studio (B. was still sleeping), out of habit rather than volition, out of comfort-seeking rather than inspiration. I sorted through my bins, and started cutting half-square triangles for a quilt. It was a quilt for B. Here it is so far:
I suppose it's appropriate for the solstice, a kind of day-and-night quilt. In a way, I am just making it to get me through the darkness of not-knowing.
I don't know how B.'s story will turn out. I don't know whether my husband's work will ever recede and allow him a life of his own. I don't know if I will have to give up some of my competing commitments, which of them matters more to me, which of them makes a difference.
I do know that sewing a scrappy quilt like this creates a steady rhythm, and that I like that rhythm. And that I feel good about exposing B. to that rhythm when she comes into the sewing room to hang out, as she does on a regular basis. With her inspiration and my guidance, she gets started making something, but then quits, sometimes very close to the end. I don't know why. My rhythm continues, a steady heartbeat of intention.
This rhythm has been carrying me through the darkest days of the year.