Monday, March 28, 2005

the paschal lamb

my easter weekend was relaxing and pleasant. the rainy weather did not abate, lasting from thursday until this very moment (it is pouring as i type this). i was not feeling super well, so we skipped the trip to michael's parents' house and i made a curried lamb meatballs dish (with apples and onions), brown rice, and peas and michael and i watched some episodes of the 2nd season of 'la femme nikita' and snacked on a guava nectar/lime juice/coconut rum-soaked cake (an experimental creation that went well, save the third that stuck to the inside of my bundt pan!). all in all, a lovely rainy day spent with my sweetheart.

the highlight of yesterday (and every day lately) though, has been our prayer times. michael and i have committed to setting aside a time every evening to pray together, and it's been just awesome. honestly, i don't know why in the world we haven't been doing this before now. i mean, we did pray for each other - sure - but not TOGETHER. it has already made a significant impact on our relationship. the Spirit of God is a good heart-knitter:).

so now, on this late rainy monday afternoon, i'm off to hop on my exercise machine (yo-yo ma's baroque album is my soundtrack) and then i'll make something quick for dinner and settle in for some TV and magazine reading.

happy easter, everyone.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

so much for that....

well, i've come down with something. i'm not sure exactly where it's going (i pray nowhere), but let's just say that my throat feels the same way it did before i got REALLY sick right after new year's.

i am not exaggerating when i say that this CANNOT happen to me right now.

i mean, really.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

ecce whitman!

What do you think has become of the young and old men?
And what do you think has become of the women and children?

They are alive and well somewhere;
The smallest sprout shows there is really no death;
And if ever there was, it led forward life, and does not wait at the end to arrest it,
And ceas’d the moment life appear’d.

All goes onward and outward—nothing collapses;
And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.
sometimes it is the most nonsensical thoughts that yield the greatest understanding. and so it is with faith in God. life is a whirling jumble of seeming contradictions. death, which many fear, is not really the end but a continuation. God, whom many deny, cannot be denied. life, that thing to which so many cling tightly, cannot be grasped. cannot be held. cannot be saved for any extra hour or minute or breath.

to read whitman, sometimes it makes you realize that he was talking crazy. and let's face it: his words were kinda crazy. yet in the midst of his mind's maelstrom, some real things poured out - things that connect to someone like me. things that make sense while making no sense at all.

death brings life. pain brings joy. weakness brings strength.

i'm not interested in getting bogged down in the contradictions anymore. i've come to some terms: not much is clear in the day to day. why am i at this place or that? why does this person like me, while that one doesn't? why am i asking all these damned questions?

so let me be one of those who can lay it down and walk ahead, God. let me feel the wind against my skin and know that it is your breath infusing life into this broken vessel. let me lie in the comfort of unanswered questions and sing loud and love hard until it's time to come home again. that's my prayer. that's all a soul could want.

The last scud of day holds back for me;
It flings my likeness after the rest, and true as any, on the shadow’d wilds;
It coaxes me to the vapor and the dusk.

I depart as air—I shake my white locks at the runaway sun;
I effuse my flesh in eddies, and drift it in lacy jags.

I bequeathe myself to the dirt, to grow from the grass I love;
If you want me again, look for me under your boot-soles.

You will hardly know who I am, or what I mean;
But I shall be good health to you nevertheless,
And filter and fibre your blood.

Failing to fetch me at first, keep encouraged;
Missing me one place, search another;
I stop somewhere, waiting for you.

* from "Leaves of Grass," Walt Whitman (1819-1892)

Thursday, March 03, 2005

it really does

last night while on a very long phone call with my mother, i found out that my friend's son died of cancer. he was 10. it's been on its way for awhile, but there is that tension when someone is clinging on to life - the hope that things could turn the other way. it's an odd and stressful kind of limbo to be in.

and as i sat at work today, in the middle of this quicksand-esque project on which i'm currently working, i couldn't help but think how odd it is that as i while away the hours in my cubicle, this woman and her daughter and new husband and stepchildren are somewhere grieving, getting ready for a funeral. and other people are doing just the same thing - or their own version of living, whatever that means to them.

and while some sit in their own private hells, the rest of the world wanders slowly by, pushing papers around, getting the kids up from school, cooking dinner and doing laundry, and on and on. it amazes me that we all pick up the pieces of our lives and get on with the mundane.

there's a saying that my mother has been tossing around the last couple of years: it is what it is. and you know, that's just really true. someone has died. someone is getting married. someone is thinking about moving, or switching jobs, or losing weight. plans are made, promises are broken, tears are shed. and it is what it is.

and you know, i'm not in a personal hell. no one has died recently and while things aren't totally great with me just now, i'm moving forward. in other words, no one would look at my external life and think anything of it. and yet i'm not happy. not globally so, anyway.

i've certainly had my share of pain, of suffering, of all that stuff....and when i was in those places of despair and difficulty, the world looked fresh, promising, even as i grieved. there was a rawness to living that the rest of the world seemed to be missing out on. and i made promises to myself in those moments that i'd never go back to that everyday existence. but i did.

so now, every day, i get up, do my morning routine, head off to work, put in my 9 hours, come back home, do dinner, watch a little tv, talk to a few friends, and then it's off to bed. weekends might involve plans, but really, the months are passing like they're going out of style. and at this point, i have little to show for it. my relationships are what they are: good for the most part, relatively stable. i'm building job experience, blahblahblah. but every day, in the midst of my very exact existence, i wish for something more than what i have.

i don't want to be one of those people who's always looking for the door, always wanting to hold out a little longer, always 'better dealing' it. but i have to be honest: at this point, i know that there's more to this life than what i've got going on.

in the mean time, though, while i wait and waste and wish, life, as it does so well, goes on.

i mean, it really does....