Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Day 9: The Unexpected Gift


/lan yap/


an unexpected gift

A Creole word shared tonight during the Thanksgiving service at church...

A reminder to be open-eyed for these gifts in our lives...

A point to be an unexpected gift in the world

(too jaded and unaware that such gifts are even possible.)

Monday, November 23, 2015

Day 8: See The World Through Different Eyes

I want to see the world
with eyes that blur out
eyes that focus on
eyes that square on
eyes that glow with
and eyes that shine with
and eyes that open to
and eyes that close to
and eyes that smile at
and eyes that cry with
and eyes that watch over
and eyes that dream of
all these things.

I want to see with eyes that make the whole world 
worth seeing;
and be in a world that sees me the 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Day 7: Appreciating My Husband

Today, in the very early morning hours, a high school classmate of mine departed this life after fighting a HARD battle with cancer.

He left a wife and in-laws and a throng of friends who are, by all accounts, shredded by this loss.

He and I were not close all those years ago at THS, but I remember well how hilariously funny he was and what an incredible writer he was.

I hate using those past tense verbs.  Chad should not now be past tense...

All day, I've thought of him, and with every thought of him, I've also thought of his wife.  I never met her, but I "know" her from Facebook, from the messages of love and support she's received from relatives and friends all over the country, from her posts.  She clearly LOVES Chad.  Seriously.  Her love is almost tangible in her words, and on her face...the look of love is literally visible in every photo of the two of them.  Theirs was clearly a marriage of soul-mates.  I say that with no sarcasm or skepticism.  Soul-mates.  For real.

I can't imagine the pain she's feeling right now.  The love and partner of her life will never again hug her or hold her hand or smile at her.  He'll never be there again to share a meal, share a laugh, share a conversation.  The exuberant and mundane moments of life will never again be theirs together.

I think of that and I can hardly breathe.

Because...what if it were me?  What if I were the one staring at an empty chair, normally inhabited by my sweet husband?  What if were crawling into a bed alone?  Waking up alone?

I have been so, so thankful to have Glen in my life the past four years.  Days like today make me all the more thankful for him, and enable me to frame specifically the ways I love...

...his sweet smile
...his quiet strength
...his faith
...his intelligence
...his integrity
...his hugs
...his kindness 
...his love.

 He cares about me---actually cares about what I say and what I hope for and what I want and what makes me happy.  He makes me laugh.  He makes me want to be a better person.  He gives me strength and hope.  He brings light into my life.

It has been precious, seeing how loved my classmate was and how loved his wife is still--there are so many people pouring themselves out to her, supporting her through her grief.  It encourages me to see so much love in the world, and reminds me of all the love I have right here in mine.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Day 6: Brief Philosophy, Big Idea

From Japan, this concept:


Nothing lasts,
nothing is perfect,
nothing is finished.

I love that...

Friday, November 20, 2015

Day 5: Giving Fear the Space To Leave

Oh, no---fear.

You are

You imprison
walk away,
giving no thought to the prisoner who spends every moment thinking of

If only there were a
a door
an exit
or an
(If only...)

there is.

That's Fear's real power---that he has none.

(I invite you to leave now, cruel one.  It is time for)

Oh...no fear.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Day 4: The Sweetness of Being "Present"

Oh, the beauty of children....

Tonight, while grabbing a meal at a local sandwich shop, I observed a sweet little boy seated at a table directly by ours.  He and his mother had entered the shop after his father (who was already seated when he came in), and when he saw him, he rushed forward excitedly and hopped into their booth!  Unfortunately, the little boy's father was too intent on staring at his phone to notice him.  He barely acknowledged his wife, who came over to inquire about ordering their meal, and he certainly was ignoring their son.  It was troubling, to say the least.

But...the little boy...undeterred by a silly iPhone...slipped out of his seat and moved around their table toward his father's spot in their booth.  (Getting no reaction from his dad.)   Undeterred still, he slipped closer.  (Again, getting no reaction.)  Finally...this determined, precious, beautiful boy (whose father was behaving more like a child than he was, ignoring his family and petulantly attaching himself to a tiny screen) leaned in closer and closer and closer...

...until their faces were practically touching

...until he knocked his father's ball cap askew

...until his father finally smiled at him--and even laughed a little.

Getting that smile and getting that giggle elicited a glow of joy so pure from that sweet boy's face that I felt joy, too.  It reminded me about being present.  It showed me how little we look---really look---at each other (because we're more comfortable really looking at hand-held screens).  

Had I brought my phone to dinner tonight, I probably would've missed all of that.

Which made that sweet moment all the sweeter.  If not for the dad, certainly for me.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Day 3: Gratitude for A Horrible Day

Day 3....some random thoughts on gratitude after a truly horrible day.

Even horrible days make me thankful.
I am thankful that I have
no sorrows,
no struggles,
no illnesses,
no losses,
no anything
so staggering that I feel the need to run from my life.
My life is beautiful....
...and hard
...and amazing
...and exhausting
and I love it.
I will not run from it--nor do I want to.
(Isn't it sad that others do?)

I am thankful that I can
listen to people
(and not feel the need to interrupt them, even though they don't afford me that same courtesy).

I am thankful that I can
laugh loudly and deeply
(and not worry that people are "offended" by my mirth).

I am thankful that I can
how miserable people are and make the choice to be their opposites;  these are pathetic souls who have nothing in their lives except
looking disapprovingly
and missing everything 
in their hyper-bitter-rigid-cold-fearful-mean-judgemental-scornful angst.

I choose to plant flowers in my soul
and spread my arms to gentle breezes.
Even when I fail myself and temporarily succumb to the jagged edges,
my heart opens a portal to grace
invites me in.

It is an invitation I always
(and will always)