Greetings from February 23, from overcast skies and wind whipping the neighborhood American flags, from a dishwasher whirring though a wash cycle, from the muffled clatter of jeans in the dryer, from a baby crying half-heartedly during nap time, from the squalls of two kids playing together after many days of doting grandparents and holiday weekends; greetings from a Thursday in this little life of ours.
Hello from coffee on it’s third reheat. Hello from three kids still in pajamas (a rarity at 10am these days, for better or worse). Hello to a “normal” I appreciate more than ever, when we are healthy and have jobs and happiness; when I don’t have a lot of emotional energy to write but I do have a lot of people I love; when being a grown up means a lot of things, but mostly it means figuring out the Tetris of needs and responsibilities that surround us, letting the false pressures fall away and the true pursuits build up.
I’m jotting off a postcard from this second, from right now, because if we’ve learned anything this year, it’s that nothing is certain.
So I sit here in this hour and consider the absolutes: Bodies fail. Kids get sick. Marriages implode. Friendships are hard. Church stuff sucks. Faith is less an absolute and more a moving target, in which we are the ones who keep moving, and then expect God to look the same from every angle.
I can’t say I wish you were here, because I don’t. I’m happy to be in these walls with these people, my four year old and my three year old and my baby who will be one year old this weekend. I’m glad for the quiet, for scattered story books, for a pretend camping site, for the birthday decorations slung cheerful and bright over walls and doors, for the smell of this morning’s waffles, for Sammy’s laugh and Clara’s ever-so-accurate impression of me as she plays house, for Audrey’s screech as she toddles to and fro on those tiny legs of hers, for the faint wind chimes across the street and the way winter stomps out like a tantrum as spring pokes in like a nervous new friend. I’m glad for today. I’m glad for a normal hour. I’m glad for a reprieve.
Tomorrow is coming. I know. This February wind is blowing in a change of seasons, in every sense, and normal won’t keep. It is also a moving target. But, like our faith, we don’t chase old normals. We don’t look for God in old ways, because as we evolve, so does the way we know Him. Today is today is today. It cannot ever be again. I am learning to be content in all situations; to appreciate when a day is kind to us; to let normal move and shift like the weather, so that when this quiet dissolves and new worries rise up, and new concerns overcome: I have stored up past hours of goodness and peace from which to draw deep breaths. Waffles for breakfast. Babies learning to walk. Coffee in my own home. Kids happy. Spring coming.
Hi, from today, from this morning, from the only moment I am promised, which is right now.
Greetings. And blessings.