Many things about the year ahead feel so much bigger than me. And yet, it’s weird how the first day of 2008 doesn’t really feel any different than the last day of 2007 felt. The sun still shone. My kids still wore short sleeve shirts even though it was cold outside and they scoffed at me when I told them to get coats before we went to dinner because I always think it’s cold when nobody else does and then they froze the whole way from the parking garage to the mall entrance. Which was a long way. I was still tired from staying up too late the night before. I still felt a clamp around my heart when I saw the way that the last rays of the day’s sunlight came through the window and lit up exactly half of my little girl’s face while she gazed into nothingness, fixed upon her own thoughts. The weight of stuff still sat on my shoulders. Stuff that forgot that it was supposed to turn into a pumpkin at the stroke of midnight. Stuff I don’t want to talk about here so I’ll talk about some other stuff.
I finally finished a jigsaw puzzle. It’s funny how I am about jigsaw puzzles. I do them a lot but I really don’t enjoy them. But there’s this thing inside of me that compels me to do them anyway. Two of my children like to help. That’s kind of fun, I guess. We sit around the table and work a puzzle together. Actually, I and one child work the puzzle together. The other one really just likes to be close, kicking her legs, humming, telling me about things I never knew before, trying to force pieces together and asking me every time if it fits. Almost every time the answer is no. But when the occasional yes happens, the excitement is enormous on the part of said kid. The third child that belongs to me shows absolutely no interest whatsoever in jigsaw puzzles and probably doesn’t even realize that the rest of us are working on it together, but she sure knows how to make her hair look pretty these days. And the man of the house…well, he likes to gaze at us with love while we’re working hard. I guess that’s kind of fun too. It’s just weird how grumbly I am inside about it. I want to get that puzzle done in the worst way so that I won’t have to do it anymore. Why am I like this? Why do it at all? I don’t know. I only know that there’s this drive inside of me that is bigger than me that needs to do it. So that it can be done. So that I can know that I did it even if I did not feel at all good while doing it.
And then there’s this series of books (that shall remain unnamed) that I feel compelled to read. I’m doing it but I’m so grouchy about it. I really don’t look forward to it in any way. But I do it because….yeah, I really don’t know why I do it. I mean, there are people that I love that really love these books and I feel like I want to know about that love. But so far I am not feeling the love. I’ve even done little games with myself to encourage me to finish. Like buying another book that I really want to read and not letting myself even open it until I’ve finished the current one that I don’t want to read at all. Maybe I just like torture? Or I like the sense of accomplishment that comes after enduring torture?
On to bigger and better things….
…like the year ahead. I have some goals. Here they are:
1) I resolve to spend more mornings outside watching the sunrise. I think that if I force myself to do this, I will be compelled to worship the one who causes the sun to rise each and every day. I will give to Him the day that stretches before me with all its uncertainties. I will feel small beneath the huge expanse, I will wrap myself in a blanket and I will take a cup of coffee with me. Starting tomorrow.
2) I resolve to spend as many evenings as possible watching the sunset. I will take a couple moments and stop and breathe and thank Him for the day I just had. I will listen to Him sing His version of “The Long Day is Over.” Even if I am surrounded by activity at the time, I will tune it out and I will enter into noiselessness and I will pray. I started this one tonight.
3) I resolve to purposely go outside when it’s raining at least twice this year. I will allow my head to be anointed and I will pretend that the rain is oil. I think it sounds like one of the loveliest things a person could do but I never want to mess up my hair. So this year, I resolve to mess up my hair on purpose for the sake of allowing myself to be loved by the maker of the rain. At least twice.
That’s about it. Tell me if you want to join me. I would love the company.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go tear a puzzle apart, throw the pieces violently back into the box that they came from, jump up and down on that box while screaming stuff like “Aauuurrrrrggghghh!” and finish it off with one gigantic huck into my kitchen trash. Then it will truly be finished.