We were at two New Years Eve parties last night. One for the New York New Year and one for Los Angeles. Both parties were mother parties, both in very different ways.
The first party was hosted by my friend Lisa. She celebrates a New York New Years Eve. This is the only way to celebrate New Years Eve if you’re in Los Angeles and don’t want to get a babysitter. People started arriving at 6, at 9 we watched the ball drop, kissed our spouses, kissed our kids, kissed a friend and had the option to be home and be tucked into bed by 10. Just after the New York Midnight the Lisa’s kids performed a rock concert. It was a party hosted by a mother that embraced families and wanted her kids to have a community around them.
By ten we were home, Alexander and Mr. G were done for the night, but I’d received this email from my mom.
Who doesn’t want to show up for a party when their mom has hired a good tarot card reader? You’d have to be crazy to miss that.
Jane and I left our house just after 10 and kissed Mr. G and Alexander one last time in 2011. Twenty minutes later I’m walking into my Mom’s living room and I open the front door right into Laura. Laura who was our family’s first friend, Laura who still smiles the same as in 1973 and whose speech pattern remains exactly the same. Laura who I see every ten years or so and even without frequency I’d still feel free to show up at her doorstep.
Laura is one of the mothers. There are other mothers there too. There’s Nadia’s mom who has been firmly entrenched in my life for 39.5 of my 41 years, and Stephan’s Mom who is a newcomer at just 39 of those years, there’s Patty who went camping with us and who spoke perfect Spanish which enchanted me at age 7 and made the most perfect needlepoints for my children when they were born.
I held my daughter’s hand and walked into a cocoon of mothers who have loved our whole family for three and four decades. I left their warmth only to visit with Davina and have the first two cards as the Ace and Queen of Pentacles. She told me a story about a double boiler and low flames with great results. She told me that my husband supported me and was my greatest fan and that I’d had incredible opportunities come my way workwise and I needed to stop passing them up. She said it’s not normal to forego so many opportunities. “Write a book”, She said. “I will.” I replied and this time I think I mean it.
The food was spectacular as it came from one of my favorite restaurants (which is of course a husband and wife team) and the table linen was a gift from Mama Lucy.
At the real midnight I kissed my daughter and then my mother and then a room full of mothers who have always loved me and who I have always loved back.