Reversible Change

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A once solid island of snow and frozen water gives way under small and large humans atop rubber boots.

Large chunks lose their edges, like a calving glacier.

Solid ice begins to break down, turning to soft, slushy water.

Each step yields a crispy “crunch,”

an audio reminder that the earth is beginning its seasonal thaw,

that once again it will produce life.

 

Too Soon

I never got to say, “Good-bye.” My heart is broken by the unexpected loss of our Music Teacher. She will be missed fiercely to say the least. No one will be able to fill her shoes. She was her own person in every sense, doing things her own way, in her own time.

The kids loved her. She had the ability to silence an entire room of four hundred fifty 3rd-5th graders in a gymnasium. They revered her that much. She had the best relationships, especially her students. Oh, the students. I can’t even begin to imagine how the students will react. They will be utterly devastated.

She was also a first-time slicer. She will not be granted the opportunity to finish out this writing challenge or to grace the world with her quiet presence for another day. Eyes welling as I type these words, for the news is too fresh and the emotions too raw.

You will be deeply, deeply missed. Rest peacefully, my friend.

Sittin’ Pretty

Sittin’ pretty over here,

Employed, still earning a paycheck.

Sittin’ pretty over here,

Living where there is fresh air and ample room to roam.

Sittin’ pretty over here,

Safe and sound with my loved ones.

Sittin’ pretty over here,

Possessing the knowledge that I am not in control.

Sittin’ pretty over here,

Nestled in God’s right hand.

Sittin’ pretty over here,

Having the faith to know this, too, shall pass.

 

Brewing Storm

The sky begins to darken. Winds pick up speed, causing the remaining leaves to thrash around on the tree branches. Is that thunder that I hear in the distance? Playful birds that frolicked about earlier today are nowhere to be seen. They have sensed the storm and are now in hiding. A storm is brewing. There is a good chance I will wake up to a vast blanket of white.

This is early spring, though.

Winter behaviors are mature, strong and well-versed by now, bullying those timid, youthful springlike tendencies. They take control. They are the bigger man. For now.

 

Five Bucks

“Mom, guess what’s in my pocket. It starts with an “M” and it’s not a monkey,” says my four-year-old daughter this afternoon while playing outside. “I have no idea, babe. What’s in your pocket?” I reply. “Money! I found five bucks!”

You know this feeling. You reach into pocket and pull out a monetary surprise. How did that get there? you think to yourself and then mentally retrace the steps of that bill to place it’s sudden reveal.

Later that afternoon we were on a walk and she pulls out the bill yet again. “I can’t believe I found five bucks!”

That evening, while snuggling on the couch, in transition between books, she looks over at me and says with a tender smile, “I think we should stop at the candy store.”

At any age, it is a very special event to discover money in your pocket. The value doesn’t even matter. It’s just the pleasant surprise.

Spinning Plate

When I was about ten years old, there was a two-week span in which my grandmother lived with us. Her Alzheimers was progressing rapidly and so we got to house her for a while. During her stay with my family of six, she never remembered our names. I don’t know that she even knew where she was, but her sense of humor stayed sharp as a tack.

One afternoon, my three sisters and I were cleaning up the dishes after a late lunch. Meanwhile, my grandmother was watching a show in the neighboring room. My oldest sister set a dinner plate down on the counter top in such a way that it spun, and spun, and spun. That circular object defied all forces of gravity in that moment, for it felt like it was spinning for an eternity.

My grandmother started in on a hearty chuckle, which led to uncontrollable laughter. She must have been laughing for minutes. She stared at that rotating saucer and I swear she thought she was in the midst of a legendary comedy show. My sisters and I exchanged looks and then began giggling ourselves. That moment brought her so much joy. After days of not being able to connect with this stranger which we called grandma, we finally felt like we had connected once again. The spinning plate, the laughter, and the shared experience brought us together once again.

I was reminded of this memory tonight while doing dishes. The saucer of the tea cup that once held my daughter’s peach/ginger tea spun in that same manner as I placed it into the dish strainer. I smiled as I relived that fond memory of my sweet grandma, the one that erupted in belly laughter from the spinning plate.

White Space

White space is the strategic moment of rest and relaxation that will bring you more peace and productivity. It could be a session of meditation, a long walk, or long lunch with a friend bragging loud laughter – to name a few.

White Space,

I’ve been yearning for you.

You are the answer to my prayers.

You have afforded me the opportunity to reflect, draw near, be still, be.

White Space,

You are designed to spark creativity, ingenuity, productivity, balance, joy.

Now that you’re here, feel free to vacate. It’s been lovely, White Space. I need just a bit less of you.

My mind is beyond the state of healthy reflection. It has now taken a nasty turn to analytical, overthinking everything.

Today was a new level. I found myself belting out hymns on my walk with my one-year-old and it was freeing. I was almost startled to hear my own voice, take such control in the way that it did.

Secondly, I laughed hard today. Really hard. For the first time in a long time. At almost nothing. It was a post someone shared and it wasn’t that funny. But I needed to laugh.

Too much White Space can make you go crazy. That’s what I am now. Crazy.

Too much White Space…