Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Sound of Silence


That's the initial thing I see when I look at the current state of  my home. The washed and (for the most part) folded laundry, the half finished coffee on the school table surrounded by remains of the day's work. The towels waiting to be put away remind me that my husband and I had to share a towel this morning - and there really isn't anything nastier than drying off with a just used towel. There are still mittens, hats and boots 'drying' in front of the fireplace. Snow pants and a dissembled drying rack lay  haphazardly in the middle of the room.There are mugs half full of hot chocolate, foamy with marshmallows, lying next to soggy candy canes. The floor is a web of half dry towels, leaves and dirt brought in on snowy boots.  In the school room Christmas cards wait to be stuffed, stamped and mailed (totally making that into a lesson on assembly lines and child labor). On the dining room table John's bajillion Legos are spread out and spilled onto the chairs. Half made creations litter the surface, balanced just so. The three kids are running through the rooms, yelling and chasing each other with an odd assortment of toys. Clothes and toys to wrap and ship are stacked in odd piles around the perimeter of the table and on chairs.

My heart races and I am frozen, seeing all this. Where do I start? How do I start?

I take a deep breath, close my eyes and pray for peace. I pray that I relax, that I know that what needs to get done will get done. Then I open my eyes.



And I understand that the laundry will get put away - by me or by the first person to grow annoyed at fishing shirts/socks/towels out of a basket. The coffee on the school table is surrounded by the remains of the days work - and it's a lot of remains because a lot was accomplished. The dry towels and dirt/leaves on the floor are a reminder of the insane amount of fun the kids had finally being able to play in snow (after three years of no snow. Three.).  The hot chocolate is the mess left from Violet making it for Sarah and herself without any help at all. They overdosed on marshmallows and messed around with candy canes, seeing how long it would take them to melt. The Legos are John's pride and joy. Oh, the hours he spends building and creating. Just now there is a sushi bar, complete with a conveyor belt, plates, moving door, and tables, he built from the description I gave a week ago. The clothing and toys to be wrapped and donated are the kids learning to bless others.

When I take a minute, when I take a breath and just be still . . . I can see this. Are there things in here that I do need to take care of? Absolutely. I will have a dry towel in the morning.  But I must remember to stop, just stop, and look around. What am I doing here? Why are we here?

I'm being reminded, again and again, that I need to be still in order to hear what is being said to me. Being still is not a strong point in my personality. Yet every time I remember to stop and be still, to listen...well, I hear. And I'm reassured that this is right. The mess, the loudness, the crazy. This is us. This is how we learn and live.

And it is good.