Friday, July 18, 2008

A good ache

My body is in a bit of a shambles after a physically demanding two days. On Wednesday evening I swam a mile, then kept my granddaughter for about 4 hours. She's the sweetest baby but I carried her around a lot and she's probably about 15 pounds now (yeah, I know, it doesn't sound like much but try picking up a 15 pound weight and carrying it around with you for a couple of hours!) Then yesterday I picked up Craig's nieces from the airport and we spent the day together alternately shooting senior photos and sightseeing. We finished the day by gathering at Waterloo for burgers - Anna, Brandon, Katie, Jennie, Craig and me. What a fun, incredible, amazing day!! I love those girls!

But when I got home I knew I was in trouble, and I'm moving VERRRRRRY slowly this morning. The keyword today is R E S T. Tomorrow is the big day (Craig's 50th.)

I came across a Thomas Merton quote this morning that really resonated with me.

“Whatever new direction God opens up for me - my job is to press forward, to grow interiorly, to pray, to break away from attachments and to defy fears, to grow in faith, which has its own solitude, to seek an entirely new perspective and new dimension in my life.”

That's so easy to swallow when it's not your life that seems to be falling apart. I'm not saying that my life is falling apart right now, but there are several curve balls coming at me, things I didn't see on the horizon. My challenge as a person who believes is to TRUST that whatever's going down will scoot me on down the path toward a higher good. Instead, sometimes I'm like Chicken Little running through the minutes and hours screaming, "The sky is falling! the sky is falling!" It all boils down to the issue of perspective. Either I believe God is running this show or not. Period. You may have to hold me to that tomorrow...

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Happy 4th, Pipsy!

Yesterday was July 4 and I was intent on getting some sparklers so that my three-month old granddaughter could see them. Actually, that's not true. I wanted to get a picture of her seeing one. This one is my favorite and a friend made the comment that it was symbolic. She mentioned something about how it was hopeful and patriotic, which made me take another look at the picture (i.e. get my mind off the image and the light and color, and look more deeply at its artistic value.) What is it saying to me? I guess the first feeling I had was sadness, in that here's a beautiful, fresh little soul who is mesmerized by a celebrative symbol of what it means to be American. There is so much good about being an American - I'm definitely not about trashing our country. But I couldn't help but think that that little ball of fire represented all she's inheriting from those of us who have come before her. We, in many ways, are defining our children and grandchildren by what we're handing them. I'm concerned that Piper is going to parent her children in a much more polluted and stripped planet than we have. I read recently that Americans throw away 2.5 million plastic water bottles per day. I also learned that landfills are closing at the rate of one per day. How can all of our trash not affect the living space of those who will come after us? I'm also disturbed that we're handing our descendants crippling debt, as our current national debt is around nine trillion dollars! I am troubled by our oil guzzling and can't help but feel that over the last 100 years - since the industrial revolution - we have used up way more than our fair share of the earth's resources… not to mention wasting them. There's a kick ass song on the new Eliza Gilkyson CD called "The Great Correction." Really makes you think. Looking at Piper gazing at that sparkler makes me want to be more aware of how my choices will affect her in 20, 30, 40 years, and how they will affect her children who come after her. I hope we all wake up before it's too late.