Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Showers of Light
Like scouts for the Perseid meteor showers due later this month, bits of light flash across the sky of my life. At first I notice one or two shooting stars and they barely register as extraordinary: several days of sunshine in a row, the scent of petunias playing around my head as I relax on our patio.
Then they start to occur with regularity, streaking through with little time between, impossible to register anything but wonder and joy.
A breakfast yesterday with a fairly new friend in which the conversation was deep and satisfying—vulnerable and intimate. As I left the restaurant, running into two former and beloved students and their mom and a sister I can hope to have in a couple of years—hugs and happiness and warmth. From there to coffee with a friend with whom my relationship has grown this summer from an occasional pleasure to a constant source of comfort.
With time to spare before an afternoon appointment, I decide to get a pedicure. My first in two years. A luxury I'd decided to forego along with many other luxuries to better afford my leave time. Sitting in the big black throne of a chair with a breeze dancing through the open door to Enya's voice while my feet and legs are given gentle care. Walking out with a lighter step and purple toes.
More time to spend as I wish. An awareness that time freedom is the greatest gift of all, and soon will be even more precious to me for its rarity.
I go to an office supply store. The fall of my first year of leave, this is what I missed most: having a reason to lose myself in the world of paper and pencils and post-its, and to bring home an abundance of treasures from that place. Yesterday I gave myself that gift. Meandering each aisle as though visiting a familiar trail in the wilderness. Grinning with delight at new choices and products. Starting with a basket, which I quickly trade for a cart, and fill.
At my appointment, finally, hearing myself say, "I have hope." Surprising us both with the words and the depth of the truth underneath.
Coming home to a frantically happy dog and complaining cats, Walt gone to a day of golf, sitting on the patio in the last of the day's warmth and feeling nothing but gratitude.
Each event a clean flash of light, barely faded before the next one follows. As though I were actually lying in the grass of my field watching the shower of miracles, I feel held by the earth. Safe. Grounded. One with it all.
The Perseids are at their most spectacular in the darkest hours of night just before dawn. Bits of rock, distant cousins to the sun, ignited by the speed of their travels, announcing like the Star of Bethlehem the arrival of a new beginning.
photo by Mell P from Planetsave