Saturday, May 21, 2011

If It Were the End of the World...

God picked a great day to do it.  The sun is shining.  It is a pleasant cool spring morning and all my children are healthy and we are playing cards.  We slept in.  We ate date bread, buttered toast and cantelope.  The kids watched cartoons.  Their father weeded the tomatoes and I clicked through a few stories of the day.  We made a grocery list and I did the morning dishes.  We walked around the yard looking at all the plants blooming and coming up and my husband watered the flowers.  I tried to get worked up about the house but couldn't.  It's still a mess and somehow today, I'm detached from what normally drives me crazy.  The day is simply too pleasant to allow irritation and mundane littleness to interrupt. 

One daughter does homework, another is watching the Disney musical on Sharpay and there's a monster car race on the wii staring three kids who can't drive.   Exams are two weeks away and I've dutifully recorded the invitations to a swimming party and a sleep over on the calendar.  My four year old is wearing two types of stripes and is eating the last of the pasta shells from lunch while my husband and I split a diet coke.  She spent the morning snuggling with me in my lap wherever I went and it was delicious.  

Someone posted "It's the End of the World as We know it." by R.E.M. and we listen to it, but even the catchy refrain gets tired.  It's hard even to engage in satire when the beautiful air and the perfect temperature and the lovely sun converge to create a sense of the Earth at a profoundly settled peaceful moment.  My two year old is looking at a book in his room. There's plenty to do and it will get done, there's plenty to address, plenty to get worked up over, but it will all keep.

My daughter jokes that if this is how it's gonna end, she wanted to go to the bookstore and use all her gift cards so she could finish a couple of manga series before the end of all things.   Another said, we should feast and above all, today is a day to use credit cards and not count calories.  I suspect that tomorrow will indeed come, and even that's okay.  Amazingly, the day spools out like maple syrup, with deliberate slowness. Every breath is precious, and all anxiety seems oddly impossible.  The day feels graced.  Maybe all days are, it's just we're often too busy, too distracted, too willing to be caught up by time to notice all the ways in which the world is wrapped in beauty. 

We aren't supposed to live like there's no tomorrow, we're supposed to love like it's forever because it's supposed to be.  If it were the end of the world, it's a great day for apocalypse and it would be too bad we can't have more days like today. 

1 comment:

amanda said...

I popped in to read your "dog catches car" and noticed no comments on this well written, beautiful essay! Thank you for letting me enjoy your family life and thank you for your delightful insights as a Catholic mom.

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!