October eighth, my father's birthday, possibly the most beautiful day of the year. Sun in the window, hot coffee. C has been scraping the ceiling of the room he's moving into in my house, scraping and washing, and prepping and working. I've helped out where I can, but he's meticulous and no one can do the job the way he can, so I stand around and offer beer and snacks and retire to my study to try to write.
I did a final (I think) revision on my play My Hot Tub With Andrea, and am sending it to the Playwrights Foundation contest. And sent SHWAF to yet another contest. And an essay I wrote last year, which started out as a rant in this blog to another magazine. And another page or two on the Marie Antoinette play and a few pages about Vegas. I feel slow like a turtle, everything's going slowly, but at least it's going.
Yesterday Ellen and Beth and Susan and I went to lake Chabot for a Libra Girl celebration--this one was specifically in honor of Ellen. She asked for a group painting on the subject of "Self-Possession" and had brought canvas, paints, and markers. We each painted a quadrant on the canvas (after eating and drinking and singing and lying around on the grass looking at the sky with our heads touching and talking about aging of course.)
I am not having a hard time with aging--yet. I feel good; my estrogen is still pumping, I can still swim half a mile without too much strain, and if I worked up to it I could swim a mile again. Energy is fine. The biggest regret--and it is huge--is not having children. Quiet dinners with C when we talk about our work and our lives are precious, and so are Sunday mornings reading the Times and working on the musical, but I still feel the absence of the kind of noise and life and activity that children bring to a house. I don't know what to do about that other than to be aware of the feeling. There's too much big change going on right now to act on it.
And I'm not sure if I should act on it. There are seasons in a person's life, and however good I feel, I am going into autumn--a beautiful time, yes, but not a time for having kids. Or could it be? Could we somehow skip the having children part and go straight to grandchildren? One of my goals this week is to find out whether I can plant an autumn/winter garden. I know planting season is officially spring, but there are vegetables like kale and chard that thrive and give all winter long. You can plant garlic now, I think. And bulbs. And somehow that's all a metaphor--I know this is harvest time, and I am harvesting, but does that mean I don't still get to plant?
Evelyn Orbach, from Jewish Ensemble Theatre in Michigan, called me the other night to tell me there's a new director for Saying Kaddish. He'll be contacting me soon, and she wants me to go to Michigan for a week or so during the rehearsal process in January. I'm excited--I've never sat in on rehearsals for a real production of my play, and also--they have a GREAT pool in the JCC. Hope the rehearsals are held there, and hope I get a free pass!