Wednesday, March 21, 2007

I didn't end up going downtown on Saturday: the weather was awful and what was I going to do anyway? I did get a call Monday from a local television station asking about an interview but in the end time was too tight for them to get out to my house and what I had to say wasn't all that interesting. I did have a friendly chat with the reporter on his cell phone: he finally told me he was losing me, but I wouldn't blame him a bit if he just wanted to get this woman off the phone!

Thanksgiving was the week after the funeral. Matthew had returned to school (for three whole days) where we discovered our first glitch: apparently, the counselor in charge of his piece of the alphabet had merely sent around an e-mail with the subject line "Thomas Doerflinger" on it to inform the teachers of what had happened. One of Matthew's teachers had changed just the week before the 11th and didn't know the names well so didn't connect Matthew with this Thomas Doerflinger, and he deleted the message. And Thomas's death, equally apparently, did not merit mention in the teachers' lounge which meant that this guy never heard anything about it. So when the teacher asked Matthew why he didn't have the project assigned on November 10th done, Matthew burst into tears. Then one of his classmates, someone who had been with him since elementary school, said "His brother was killed in Iraq" and the teacher also burst into tears. It must have been quite a scene. God bless Courtney though, for speaking up. In general, Matthew's classmates were protective for the next few months, proving once again that children will rise to the occasion.

The teacher called me to apologize--I felt sorry for him, but I also felt that the school could have done a bit more to deal with this--it was not all his fault.

Thanksgiving. Maria had gone back to Ft. Leonard Wood. Anna came down with the virus that Maria had the previous week. No one felt like going to the grocery store, much less like cooking, and the whole concept of being thankful was well beyond our grasp anyway. My mother-in-law was at loose ends too so the four of us, Richard, Matthew, Edith and I, went to a local Italian restaurant for Thanksgiving dinner. I have no idea of what we ate, though I remember that it was served family style and that the place was packed. I remember that the people at the next table were talking about the war in Iraq, the first of many such incidents. I didn't exactly feel like screaming, but I couldn't wrap my mind around the idea that for everyone else, nothing had changed. They could still discuss the war as an abstraction. It was, without doubt, the worst Thanksgiving I have ever experienced.


At March 23, 2007 at 7:38:00 PM PDT , Blogger Jason said...

Mrs. D.

Thanks for sharing, as always. In my heart I will always remember my first love, and my first buddy who didn't make it back...

"I Remember..."

At March 28, 2007 at 9:52:00 AM PDT , Blogger Lee Ann said...

You're welcome, as always, Jason.

Mrs. D


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