Monday, January 9, 2012

The extraordinary ordinary

The house is quiet but for the sound of pages turning, novels held in the hands of my boys. Their tired lids fight to finish just one more chapter before sleep washes over them. I look up periodically as one of them pads down the hall to share a funny part with me. I smile, taking in their broad shoulders and long limbs. These boys that are turning into men right under my nose. And me, powerless to stop them.

Hannah has finally succumbed to sleep, and tonight that is no small victory. Her repeated pleas to sleep by my side were rejected, one after the other, each more creative in its attempt to persuade. Were it not for the cold I am fighting, I would have given in. Her snuggles keep me company most nights in my life as a travel widow. In spite of her flailing limbs and all-night-thrashing, her presence is comforting in a quiet bed. But tonight, I need rest above all else. The calendar this week is dotted with line after line of tasks and activities, all of which will require my best self.

The phone rings, and a familiar voice closes the gap of miles that lie between us. I share every moment, even the ones mundane. He laughs at our idiosyncrasies, the ones he knows so well. He vents a little of his own day, and my heart aches for him and the stress of his life. We say goodnight, and I offer a prayer of gratitude for the good man that he is. For his capacity to love that is seemingly endless.

I weigh the choices before me and pick up a book instead of a remote. I relish the extraordinary ordinary that is my life. I snuggle under a blanket and close another day. I am grateful and humbled by the peace I feel deep in my soul.

Life is extraordinarily good.

9 comments:

danandcindy said...

He turns on the computer, anxious to see what his loser sister has to say about her dumb life. Disappointed is his initial reaction, to see that it is simply a novelized version of any old Monday. Suddenly, he perks up, and is reminded of the remarkable occasion this could be to mock her in a way that almost seems pointless. But he can't resist, he is drawn to the comment button like a crack addict to the pipe.

Forsooth, stick to writing stories about pooping your pants, Bill Shakespeare.

brooke said...

Dan Dan Dan. What do I say?

I did love this post. You DO have a good life!

Lauren in GA said...

Oh, Dan.

That was beautiful, Stie. You truly, truly, truly have a way with words. I love it.

I know...I am powerless to stop my boys from turning into men...

...even the toddler is turning into a big boy...cruel little man that he is.

Sarah said...

Love this post! You have a great way with words. My husband travels a bit... so I have a taste of what it feels like on those nights. Though my kids are young enough it's still a fight to get them into bed... yes, book over tv! My choice too.

Annie said...

Amen! Well said, friend.

Tristan said...

Very well said! This makes me smile and reflect on how good I have it as well.

Julianna said...

VERY well said.

Now, if you could only block Dan from commenting.

:)

Liz said...

Powerless. That's exactly the word for this moment. Time is relentless, no?

Liz said...

Also, I'm a wee bit jealous that my brothers are not as snarky and witty as yours is. I want someone to mock me!