Sunday, August 14, 2011

noticing things

We've been at my parent's house for about a week now and
this morning we will begin the hunting and gathering of all of the
toys, stray socks, paperbacks and toothbrushes that
have found their way into the endless nooks and crannies
of this home.
Tomorrow we'll be boarding the train and heading back for school and
work and writing and the cleaning of toilets and the making of lunches.
You know, real life.
This summer has seemed to be over full with work and events
even though in my mind I pretend summer is about ice cream and thick books.
It has moved so swiftly, I seemed to lose a month or so.
(How is it already mid-August?)
I have noticed that I've been holding my breath this summer.
Waiting for this week when I could be away from home
and take a moment to pause and puddle on the floor...
letting all the expectations and work of real life fall away.
Those moments are rare. And when they come along,
surely we should be aware of them, savoring them like chips
of cool ice on the tongue on a hot summer afternoon.
Refreshment. Relaxation. Naps on the couch for no apparent reason.
Cracks in time where we slow down and notice the life that is
swelling around us, moving us forward, lifting us up.
I've noticed how much I like being with my family.
Yesterday morning we went to church and worshiped together as a family.
Scott sat next to me. We held hands.
This was a rare beautiful thing.
I noticed that laughing makes everything more fun.
We played word games with Brett and Jenny and Mom and Dad,
laughing out loud, honing our guessing skills to a fine point.
(Who would have thought describing the phrase "The British Empire"
could be so difficult?)
I noticed that my sons are changing almost before my eyes.
A few nights ago, we took the boys to Floyd's Barbershop
for a family haircutting session.
They all seemed to grow an inch with each trim of this scissors.
Jack seemes to be filling out and up, taking up the space of a
young person coming into his own thoughts and laughter,
engaging those around him in discussion and then falling back
into child's play, spending his fun money on toys and polished
rocks at a garage sale on Saturday.
Will is finding his way into new interests.
My mom showed him how to play Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater on
the piano and he finds his way there every hour or so,
to play and fiddle and see what he can get his fingers to do,
if he can coax his own music from the keys.
He is proud of himself. You can tell by the smile that
transforms his face with the last pinging note of the song.
And Addison, sat still in his chair as the hair dresser,
snipped at his sideburns and answered the questions she asked.
What is your name? Addison.
How old are you? 5.

He did this with his eyes squinting halfway shut so as
not to fully acknowledge her presence.
But this is a monumental thing. Only a year or so ago
he would have burst into tears just making eye contact.
This makes me think that maybe kindergarten won't be as
traumatic as I fear.
I've noticed a lot of things this week the least of which
being that time flies when you are having fun...and taking naps.
This morning, as I am searching for misplaced flip flops,
I feel the rush of regular life pulling at me.
Calendar dates are edging into my thoughts.
Deadlines to note and ideas to write down have me reaching for my pen.
But it's okay.
After a week away, it will be good to be back in Redwood City.
I am ready to hit the ground running....
or at least fast walking anyway.
It feels good to be heading back home.
I've noticed that, too.

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