Monday, November 29, 2010

Let the Sun Shine In

It's been so long since I've posted that I'm not sure I remember how to do it . . . good gracious! Has it really been over a month?!? Yes, it has, and I have nothing to offer by way of explanation. Did you miss me? Did you even notice my absence? Please don't say no. (You can think it. But please don't say it in a comment.) I've randomly commented here and there, but good friends in the blogosphere have dealt with major life events and weathered the aftermath without so much as a how-do-yo-do from my corner. I hope you don't hate me.

I'd like to be able to tell you that I have been furiously participating in NaNoWriMo, and the publishing of my masterpiece, the fabled Great American Novel, is forthcoming . . . but I can't, because I haven't been. I'd like to be able to say that I've been so caught up in cleaning and organizing my cluttered and messy house that I just haven't found the time to blog. That, too, would be a lie. I have also not been on a long trip, secretly pregnant and delivering another baby, spending all of my time volunteering at a homeless shelter, meeting with Hollywood producers regarding a made-for-TV movie about my fabulously interesting life, or engaging in a principled internet-fast. I have, quite simply, been lazy. And maybe I've been wallowing a little.

The other day I was cleaning Garrett and Connor's room. I am baffled by boy smells. Even if they go to bed squeaky-clean and Burt's Bees-scented, I am still overwhelmed by a mysterious odor not unlike scrambled eggs whenever I check on them at night. This prompts me, on a regular basis, to fling open the windows and let the breeze blow through, in a futile attempt to air out the latent smell of burgeoning testosterone.

I pushed the windows as high as I could, and then, as I tucked the quilt and fluffed the pillow and arranged the stuffed animals on Garrett's bed, I noticed the play of light through the open blinds. I watched windblown leaf-shadows dance across Laney Kate's dimpled fingers as she patted the bedding, an ardent and surprisingly productive mimic of my own tidy efforts.

I had a brief moment of clarity as I watched her golden-red hair glint in the bright light: the sun, I realized, keeps on shining. All I have to do is let it in -- throw open my windows, pull back the curtains, raise the blinds, let myself be illuminated by the light that cannot stop itself from filling up an empty space -- my empty space. The sun keeps on shining. The grass keeps growing, the world keeps spinning, the birds keep singing, even if I'm not watching.

This is the greatest tragedy of blocking out the sunlight: What did I miss? What did I not see because I was closed off from the possibility? I'll never know.

But now I'm watching, and these windows are open for good.

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