I remember the drug Christmas was – the twinkling lights, vintage sounds of seasonal classics, the humming of sugar coursing through my veins, the inexplicable phenomena of dancing sugar plums, roving schoolmate conversations on just how Santa could possibly do all that he was credited with doing, oh, and the free soaring elation of dreams come true in the days leading to Christmas morning. It was the feeling that anything could happen; Santa a slave to our desire. Christmas reigns as king of all days for most kids when all wanted is translated and understood in all received. It’s the most wonderful time of the year!
Poor old St. Nick pimped by consumerism as a delivery mechanism for desire equals happiness, receiving trumping giving and individual, again, escalated above all others. Continue reading
a smile connected to the sun known by shuffled steps and a beaded brow
all waited for
all breath held for
all hope hesitated for
oh, and sleep
the Sun faithful
truer than truth known
It’s been awhile since I’ve smiled without effort and rested in the day here without waiting for another. That’s the day I know now, full of hope and the knowledge that no matter the circumstance, hope perseveres, founded in the faithfulness of a God who knows no stopping or uncaring. Other days will crash ashore with uncertainty and challenge, but the faithful learn that trust is best perfected in unnavigable waters. Continue reading
Often lately, we’ve found ourselves there stuck between emotion and disappointment. Tears threatened to fall from her reddening, yet stubborn eyes as she stood before me while doing her best not to look directly at me. I leaned over her lording big controlling words meant to strip down her actions to unthoughtful disobedience aimed to hurt and defy.
There we stood,
screaming at the moon
wanting love without give
trouncing on delicate soil
uninvited yet demanding
so long to lullabies equaling love
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Few days I go back, deep into the abyss where those days hold the stillness of a mausoleum, memories cataloged beauty and yesterday. When I do revisit those days, I find the most perplexing piece of my life lived. Like … Continue reading
The blades just kept spinning like life and order and nothingness. Everything made sense in its whispered hum. I just faded in the noise, into time unaccountable and in the realization that my hands do less these days while my mind just spins in circles –much like the humming fan blades turning intoxicatingly.
I do far less these days, but I’m busier. And tired(er).
On an average of five hours sleep, I go until I cannot or should not.
Just a handful of months ago, I finished my first book to much joy and self-adulation. The amount of focus needed to see an idea through to storyboard, gruelingly sliced and shaped into an outline and then strung tighter together with words, pushed limits broader than I knew possible. I met the day earlier than dawn and the kids to work with diligence closer to the end. Words filled blank pages deep into night after the kids went to bed, all the while, working and learning to be a single parent between the margins of writing. As I look back at pictures of daddy daughter dates, first experiences as a single parent and too many dessert overloaded movie nights to count, I see me smiling easier.
Those days didn’t escape. We leaned into each moment honestly and didn’t even know it. We didn’t need to. The moment was enough and it was all we wanted – nothing more.
Continue to full article at Deeper Family
We live in circles and lines defined more and better each day in routines, in habits. The habits we tolerate shape our pace through life and weave together the perspective in which we gaze out at the world alive around us. In similar fashion, we fail to perceive or even recognize the panorama of what could be when we become hemmed in by habits.
If we always return home the same way everyday, we may never become aware of a shortcut, a better way home.
There comes a time when ascent flattens and pace slows to life less than extraordinary. In youth, we excitedly run with risk absent of consequence as we pursue dreams unhinged to plausibility. Call it youthful exuberance or recklessness, but there is an invigorating vitality in running through each day with a hunger for more and a thirst for tomorrow. As a result, we grow exponentially in youth, not because of the mere pace of our going, but our openness to new experiences and investigative curiosity in all surrounding us. Naturally, we slow in our lean into adulthood as we take on responsibility and schedules. The pace of yesteryear cannot be maintained in the same way as we draw circles of priority and lines of direction. Continue reading
I just stood there, my eyes filled with tears colored disappointment.
I expected something different and didn’t take well to the surprise. My mother confused, bent low and spoke soft as she tried to understand how such a dead ringer of a gift could somehow bring grief to my bothered little soul. But the other kids laughed and cheered in front of our fellow kindergarteners as they teetered with larger boxes and tore through endless amounts of wrapping paper. I remember my turn; my eyes scanning the room hiding the ferocity of excitement within finally landed on the box being brought toward me.
The smallest of all boxes was laid before me. Little primal like chants rose to fill the room buzzing with holiday mania, “OPEN IT! OPEN IT! OPEN IT!”
Her eyes, squinted and unfixed, glanced my way, not as to lock in but to demand explanation and confess fear. It’s toughest when I can do little to intervene and help her.
She’s oldest of the three, all blazing toward maturity. Before us lies frantic years cresting high in emotionalism and confusing nose dives for no discernible reason. Teenagers are a mystery of hormonal weirdness. It’s a stretch of life confounding the most prepared of us parents. I gaze at my oldest daughter in moments flashing unfamiliar and pray it all sticks and holds together. The worst part that really cripples me is the understanding that she will disappoint me, break my heart when she pushes me away and says hurtful things. I pray for her then and teach as often as I can now. I don’t own control, and to a large degree neither does she. Out of control, her choices will be tied to insecurity and friends she’ll swear are so close to her. I’ll wonder in those moments how we got to that point so fragile and ready to break.
I pray He holds His words in our hearts and goes to valiant pursuit when we stray; we, the one, apart from the ninety nine.
“What’s wrong?! Why are you crying now?”
“I don’t know.”
“You must know.”
“I just look so ugly.”
I took a path of less understanding and shot holes through her feelings, reasons why she shouldn’t feel the way she did. Honestly, the reasons were given to stop her from going too far from me. I’m a man raising three little girls quickly morphing into young ladies. My emotional capacity is regularly dwarfed by those little estrogen soaked hearts dreaming in fairy tales and sparkly endings. When I cry, a recognizable cause stands clearly identifiable, but they cry and move through varying emotions with the suddenness of a jack in the box.
CONTINUE READING AT A DEEPER FAMILY. . .
I enter the day on fire already at dawn.
Each one lined up in demanding succession, already laying claim to time not yet, minutes too young to be accounted for, but they are before I even have the chance to live. We live in some sort of deficit common to most and known by all. Busy, we all are; some more than others by choice and some sinking in a devouring schedule.
It appears that life demands more at different times. My schedule is busier now than I can ever remember, and balancing all of it seems more than daunting of a task most days. Like plates spinning threatening crash and disruption of symphony – items on my calendar, tasks stacked in my to do list, appointments butting up to each other, project deadlines, responsibilities, opportunities, ideas – my days blur and bleed into each other, a monochromatic smear undistinguishable from the one before.
Just the other day, after juggling work meetings, finishing a writing project and coaching my little first grader through addition problems, I asked her if it was really Thursday. She, matter-of-factly replied, “I don’t know.” So we were both lost and disappeared back into our work because bath time, dinner and family talk awaited us, impatiently.
You get it just like I get it: we’re all busy, probably more than we should be.