My Many Hats

8 Sep

I have a collection of hats.  Some of which belonged to my grandmother, Ella, from the 1950’s and beyond.  Her collection, in particular, is special to me.  I am able to keep Ella with me, though physically her absence is felt.

vintage hats

A few of Ella’s collection

In many ways, I wear different hats throughout the week.  I am speaking metaphorically, of course.  The hats I wear involve, or reflect rather, the varying ways I make it through each circumstance of each day.

I put on my ‘professional hat’ while at work.  That hat remains devoid of my sorrow.  I put on the hat of ‘faith’ which encourages others facing a challenge.  And encourages me as well.  I wear a hat of ‘progress’ which propells my every, sorrow-filled step forward.  I wear the hat of ‘normalcy’ when my daughter and husband, and dogs, require it.  I wear, too, the hat of ‘mourning’, the black veil that fictitiously remains intact–pinned perfectly, to my coife of the day.  This is the “hat” I wish were more of a presence for the world to see, but that is not the culture of my society.

I am a woman of many hats.

I don’t think it wrong to don whichever hat is needed, in the moment it is required.  This is living.  This is life, this side of Heaven.  In fact, I think it right.  I think it honors those of whom have traveled to the great beyond before me.  I think in their state of peace, sorrow no more, and fulfilled earthly mission, my wearing of each hat pays tribute to their journey.  …and in this perspective, you may feel free to call me a “wierdo.”

I am weird.  My hats are weird.  My life is everything strange.  Your perspective of me, whatever it may be, is justified.

I also wear a cap of self pity.  This particular hat, I wear, when I step outside of myself and look at our loss from those around me.  When I go to the end of my driveway and pick up the newspaper, only to see a few of my neighbors conversing in the crisp of the morning.  They look at me and wave.  I wave back.  Yet as I return, paper in hand, to the kitchen table where I will read the news, I know their hearts are filled with sorrow for the reduction of our family unit.  I feel the eyes of “the other people.”  The idea that our new Bent life reflects the obvious–the, this can happen to you, feeling.  For when a loss is felt, close at hand, it reverberates the possibility of, it happening!

Are you able to follow this wild train of thought?  My soul feels my intention, though my use of language, at this time, seems to be failing me.

It is not a self pity that is debilitating.  As I have described above, the other hats come into play to thwart “debilitating’s” victory.  It is more the realization that my life’s reflection speaks of the possibility of sorrow’s touch.  Again, my use of language is failing me.

Should I just stop here?  With this post?  Is it too heavy a concept to pass along to the reader?  hhhmmmm…I pause to ponder.

I miss my son.  My family unit misses his presence.  And my world around me, misses our unit.  Sorrow is right, for this time.  I look forward to the day when the fictitious black veil is no longer adhered to my head.  I look forward to the day when our unit, and those connected, can celebrate the memory of Cole and the many memories his short life gave to us.

But for now, I am a woman who wears many hats.  And with that, I shall take my leave.

8 Responses to “My Many Hats”

  1. bringnskinnyback September 24, 2013 at 10:06 pm #

    My Dearest Rivka,
    I find myself thinking of you, Brian, Esther, and Cole often! I keep Cole’s picture along side a picture of a Christmas photo of me and my mom when I was about 3(above me) in my sun visor.I find myself talking to them both when alone in the car. I know I said I would come and visit yet haven’t; being I recently moved to Fallbrook 😦 . I am home sick and miss orange county! Hopefully I will have some free time from my busy work schedule to come visit soon! I love you my Bent Family and miss you very much!

    • Rivka And Her Wit September 25, 2013 at 1:50 pm #

      Thank you, Moninie! We love you too. And very much enjoyed (and appreciated) receiving your graduation announcement. Congratulations! We are so very proud of you–and I know your mom is praising the Lord on behalf of her daughter! 🙂

  2. Jean September 10, 2013 at 7:48 pm #

    Rivka–Good analogy, hats. I can relate. I wish our culture allowed for mourning clothes. It would be nice to have that deference for awhile, while your heart healed. But people don’t like to talk about about death. Or dying. Or sometimes about the ones you miss.

    But you can talk about Cole here as much as you want. We’ll listen.

    • Rivka And Her Wit September 10, 2013 at 8:05 pm #

      I am so very grateful. Thank you Jean. P.s. I think of you often, and appreciate your friendship.

  3. mfincham111 September 8, 2013 at 7:43 pm #

    I know that you are capable of wearing all the hats. I’ve seen you physically try on some of them and don’t forget that several of those hats used to be mine. Unfortunately, you have learned too early to wear the one with the veil. You may not think so, but I also learned too early when your Dad died.

    Cole is with me everyday looking at me from the mirror on my bureau. I talk to him and it is a good thing I live alone and mostly talk in my head or the people who live around me might question my sanity. I know most gringos question my sanity already for living where I live.

    I don’t know if you will ever get rid of the black veil. It gets stuck on and inside the head for a long time as though it is glued in place. Maybe it will disintegrate with age.

    Keep up the writing and remember your title, the wit part is lagging. Disney World will be good for your family.

    I Love You. Solo el amor prevalece.

  4. Adrienne Mannis September 8, 2013 at 7:12 pm #

    Rifka, you fortunately or unfortunately, own all of your hats. I know that you would not trade any of them (except that darn black veil), and right now you are so aware of your own feelings. You are right in as much as others are afraid. We all love you and your family and wish you some fun and silly hats soon!!

    Love and prayers to you and yours!!

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