After this, there'll only be five more posts before 500. Five hundred. I've seen the number climbing for awhile now, ever closer to that mark, and slowing my pace as I wonder what my five-hundredth-post will be about. Such pressure.
My thoughts of late have been traveling with my head: in a gravitational pull toward my pillow. That rest I was craving did arrive, eventually, though it was not as I expected, or when, and not near often enough. Much the same as I expect God to yell loudly, and he whispers instead. Or that feeling when you think you're about to drink water, but take a swig of milk. Somewhere on the edges of and between those two analogies lies the definition of my week.
Nights needed me awake, and mornings were spent grasping at sleep. Afternoons filled up with urgent diversions, feelings of guilt, feelings of elation, tedium, routine, and routine breakers. Evenings stretched themselves out and knocked me sideways into bed at odd hours.
There were interruptions, sour in smell and taste. Like bad milk unexpected, I found dark corners of my heart where I was sure good light had been. My innards boiled in helpless defensiveness and I carved words on to the sign post, so I remember next time: grace is for those who need it. I wonder if I will remember next time.
The week was redeemed with enough beauty to pause the heart and start it up again forever; wild joy and quiet thanks abound. Humbly, I remark on the privelege of being present. In the middle of an operating room, nurses rustling, doctors attending, machines filled with beeps and whirs, came a baby's cry; soft but unmistakable; quiet, but here. He arrived early but with care and attention, and though my sister had a feeling it was a boy she was still delighted at the announcement. I viewed his arrival through my camera lense and tears. A kiss on her relieved forehead, and a quiet reprimanding of the clock: my brother-in-law is on his way! A few more hours and he'd be the one kissing her; the one standing here instead. When his flight lands, I show him pictures, and give them space, and think how little I care of sleep, so long as my new little nephew is okay.
There were moments I was too busy, and too over my head. There were rare hours of quiet, still, peace. I got to watch the eyes I love look at me as though I were beautiful, as I sat disheveled, hair in tatters, back curved from lack of sleep. I saw that life is fast paced and I am too hazy to keep up, though it continues to show me beauty so I might try.
Afterthought #495: I am happy life has me happy to try.