Thursday, March 08, 2007

Glimpses of gratitude

I am grateful today...

for an early morning café visit with one of my children. The valley was shrouded in fog as we left the house, but it slipped away as we sipped our espresso. In the same way, some of my mind’s fog dissipated as we talked. I loved hearing him say, “I really like our family” and “You like us a lot, Mom. I’m glad.” We solved some problems, made some plans, got some perspective. It was the perfect start to my day.

for a parking lot filled with blossoming branches. The fragrance sings something from the past for me. I don’t remember trees in bloom from my childhood, just apricot orchards filled with fruit-laden branches; but somewhere, back in the far-gone past, there had to be branches with that intoxicating floral perfume. And it was a happy place. A few minutes in a parking lot filled with blossoms, between this responsibility and that, brought such deep pleasure. I am grateful.

for signs of spring everywhere I look. An open bedroom window at night, daffodils popping up, new birds on the pond, happy children disappearing around the property for long hours of digging and games that involve fairies or pirates or elaborate English estates with formal gardens. I am in awe.

for a visit with good friends tonight. Friends who grab you and say, “I have MISSED you!” Friends who understand what it means to balance the care of children and the support of parents, and the deep desire that no one feel like a burden, and wanting to do the right thing. A friend who can nod and say, “Yep, I know” and they really do. I am so blessed.

for a mother and five children and a husband and myself who are all HEALTHY. No coughs, no sniffles, no weariness, no aches, no hospital stays, no thermometers or cold medicine on the bedside table. I am relieved (almost enough to cry. Really.)

for singing in the car with my teenagers. I never knew these years could be so good. “They” only told me how hard it would be. I am glad it was not anywhere near a full picture of this stage of life.

When we’ve been sick for what feels like weeks-upon-weeks, and the house is messy, and everyone is sick of being sick, and sick of being cooped up together in a small house, it can seem like the joy is gone forever. Today is a beautiful reminder of the reality that it all comes and goes, the good and the difficult, and that today’s good is a gift.

I am grateful.

Thank you, Lord.

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