Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Lately, it has felt easy to forget the world. My average day's to-do list is full of actions that nurture my family and myself. I take the girls for walks, I make meals, I comfort and carry.
We don't have a television, so I usually stay in touch with the rest of the world by listening to the news on the radio. Often I feel I need to listen to the news with a hard heart...otherwise I cannot bear to listen at all. I haven't been very good at that whole 'hard-heart' thing lately. Maybe it's because my life feels so peaceful, so contented right now, but lately it seems that whenever I tune into the 'news' I am left somewhat devestated.
From the unimaginable violence in the eastern Congo, to the unimaginable ignorance of book burners here in our own country, to stories that are simply tragic; parents mourning lost children, veterans mourning the loss of their pre-war selves. I feel almost guilty for these steady sweet days I've been living.
It can be easy to forget that all these things happen in my world. It is the world I have planted my children into, so full of incredible beauty, joy, violence, and misunderstanding all together.
Where am I going with this? I'm not sure. Except that the other morning as I drove and listened to these stories, I was overwhelmed by such gratitude. Despite the loss, the divisions, the horrible ways people hurt each other...I am blessed with such a beautiful life.
I know I'm getting closer to the person I want to be. Because I carry this enormous gratitude with me every day, everywhere I go.
Gratitude for the mountains painted with morning sun, the foothills tumbling to the valley floor, creased and golden like rumpled bedsheets.
For the silver spray of sparrows that fly like light over my head, their collective sound like water moving over stones.
For the knowledge that everything we really need is within our reach, our means;
clean water from the spring up the road, food we grow and harvest, from our garden or the wild.
I think of mothers all over the world, and I am overwhelmed by my luck -
that when I put my children to bed at night, I have the luxury of knowing they will be safe until morning. I'm not putting them to bed in a tent in a refuge camp, or telling them that I'm sorry, but there's just nothing left to eat or drink.
There are so many mothers just like me that do not have that daily certainty, such a basic thing,
to want to protect and keep your children safe, healthy.
So I guess this gratitude is laced with empathy and a mindfullness of how delicate our world is. How delicate our lives are, our relationships with each other. How we must take the time to stop and breathe, and be greatful for those moments and connections that sustain us.
Posted by Ellie at 8:56 AM