On Friday we heard the horrific news about Newtown, Connecticut and our hearts went out to the parents and the town in their unimaginable shock and grief. Everything I had taken for granted was now special and bright. To turn up to my children's school at 3pm and have them stride up to me "Hi Mom," bag bouncing off their back and shoes untied, was a privilege and a blessing.
|Jackson, Tallulah, Cy and Harley|
Oh yes, I've known that happiness "cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed." But still I've spent my time consumed by the next trip, the next sparkly thing, having regrets about not buying a Christmas tree or whether candy canes in a jar would make the room perfect. I haven't had the grace to accept that happiness is being grateful for what you already have.
So I'm grateful.
For Cy, 8, who bounces out of bed at 6.30am, so happy to be in the world that we can hear the grin in his (loud) voice as he belts out baseball chants.
For Tallulah, 11, who yesterday danced in the street with her friend Ariana, both wearing their best frocks. "Dressing up and dancing with my best friend..." she told us "that's one more thing checked off my Bucket List."
For Jackson, 13, who will sit on the couch all morning patting the dog, already knowing the quiet poetry of a day.
For Harley, 15, who's still not too old to be excited about his friends coming round on Friday afternoon to play whiffle ball. "Whiffle!" they will hiss to each other at school all morning Friday, reveling in how dorky it sounds.
For living in a place where hibiscus blooms in winter; for my Mum who will play Rummikub with the kids all week long; for a decade of friends who have sat with me in their kitchens eating hummus and pita bread, laughing, crying and rolling our eyes; for having a husband who plugs in my phone every night, brings me a glass of water and, when we've finished reading, gets out of bed to turn out the light even though the switch is on my side.
"Fanks" as Cy would say. Thanks.