Monday was a bright and beautiful day. The sun shone brightly with temps in the low eighties. I didn’t get much of a chance to enjoy it as I was busy. As dusk settled upon us I was itching to get outside to just sit, to just be. Things have been a bit hectic around here lately, so this was no exception. The drape of night had completely fallen before I actually made it outside.
I have several tall pine trees in my back yard. I pulled a lawn chair between two of them and nestled in for a few moments. I was surprised to find a bit of a chill in the air after such a warm day. A tender breeze tousled my hair across my cheek. I could feel the humidity springing my iron straightened hair back into frizzy curls. Still, I sat quietly watching the black eye of the three quarter moon gazing back at me. The sky was clear with stars popping in and out overhead. Flying squirrels chattered back and forth along with some insect bantering…or maybe they were talking to me. Occasionally, I caught a whiff of my neighbor’s lilac bush. I sipped a glass of wine and let the night settle in my soul.
I thought about how helpless I sometimes feel in this vast universe. I am a person who has always (until very recently) strived to control my portion in a world that somewhat controls me. I know the only thing I can regulate are my choices, actions, and reactions. I know I don’t have the power to cure the world of it’s ills. Wars and disease existed long before my time, and I’m sure will remain long after my days on earth are done. I don’t understand how we get to the point we are at times or what to do at those times except place my faith in Him who is in control. I know I must accept that His will won’t always be my desire. I do trust that He knows a bigger and more complete picture than I will ever comprehend. Always as I struggle to find reason, I look for lessons I might be overlooking. I wonder how my attitude, perception, and my engagement affect those around me. I think I’ll follow my sister’s advice and just step one foot in front of the other and do the best I can.
Last night as I dumped the trash into the outside garbage can, it started sprinkling. It was warm and I smiled as I thought about dancing in the rain as a child. I really wanted to, but I don’t know if I was more worried that my husband might see me through the window or that the neighbors might think I’m crazy. (The hubby already knows I’m crazy!) Instead I stretched my arms out and tilted my face skyward. I let the rain pitter across my face and arms. I smiled as I was absorbed in the moment. I looked into the front picture window to see Wylie (my dog) standing and wagging her tail at me. She greeted me at the door and drank the water from my arms. She wanted to share in my moment. Daily, I learn about life from animals and children.
Today, we are blessed with another beautiful warm day. With my favorite two year old in tow, I ventured to the park. She ran from slide to swing too excited to decide where to begin her fun. She tossed the ground mulch into the air and danced beneath the bark and occasional pebble, totally unafraid of a stone popping her in the head. I thought what a joy it would be to dance and toss our pebbles into the air just basking in the moment unafraid of life’s nuggets coming back to pound us.
Each time clouds passed overhead and the sky darkened for a second, she reassured me, “It dark, but we still see.”
She found the slides to be her greatest source of joy. “Come slide”, she screamed to me. She went from one to another with a pattern of yellow pollen staining the seat of her pink pants.
“I’m too big.”
“No, not. Come on.”
I climbed up, placed her in my lap and came down the big twisting slide, the only one she would not try. “We did it! Yay, you NOT too big!”
After that she ran up by herself. Half way down, wide eyed she said, “I hafta’ keep going!” And keep going she did. She not only made it down, but did it over and over and cheered me on every time I did it.
Upon her insistence, we rested against the steps of the slide with our head tilted skyward and watched between the treetops as the clouds expanded and swept across the sky at the speed of life. How quickly life passes by. I know I’ll hardly turn around and this child will be a grown woman.
We ran and we played. Our hair tangled in the wind. Pollen coated the seats of our pants and probably the rest of us as well. We tired ourselves out, and my spirit was all the better for it. Sometimes, we need to take the time to enjoy life as only small children and animals know how to do.
And yes, life may get dark at times but “we still see” and even if we don’t we’ll carefully place one foot in front of the other because we “hafta’ keep going”.