I'm contentedly immersed in our "now".. yet have had so much on my mind.
Sad things have been happening around us, weaving in and out of my thoughts each day.
One thing that is at the root of most of my thoughts, and the root of most of what I am, is my kids.
They are growing and changing. It's quite incredible, really.
I'm enjoying days spent together and letting them stay up much too late at night.
We're cleaning out closets (oh, how they grow!) to see what we need -or preferably don't need- for school, which starts in September for us.
I've been thinking of our day by day lifestyle. Saturday night I wrote this, and then stopped:
"Day by day.. Minute by minute.. It's how we're livin'."They lost Charlie Monday night.
Those are song lyrics I love. Words I often feel like I'm trying to explain about our life. And also what's on my mind this evening.
Just getting through one day at a time. Not yet thinking about the next, living in the now. It is indeed how we're living most of the time.
Not everyone embraces that about us. Some of our fellow humans have predictable schedules and are planners, weeks and months in advance. But for us, there are endless variables to a day in our lives. We take them one at a time.
On my mind tonight is a baby boy named Charlie, our sister-in-law's nephew. Charlie is not quite 4 months old, and has lived all his life in the hospital. He's beautiful. His parents' love for him is beautiful. Charlie is living day by day.
We spent this evening with many of his family members, his aunts & uncles, his cousins, his grandma & grandpa. My heart is sad for them all. It was an evening of smiles, yet I came home and cried for them.
Again, I'm reminded of how precious time, and life, is.
I can't stop thinking about Charlie's parents, and all the people we know who have lost children.
I'm so sorry. Those words just aren't big enough.
Charlie's dad wrote this morning about healing vs. bandaging the hole that losing Charlie has left.
My grandparents lost two sons after long battles with cancer in their teenage years, something I can't fathom. My grandma is in her 80's now. That was long ago, just before I was born, but I'm pretty certain she wears a bandage over a void that will never be filled.
I think of DJan, my blog friend and role model when it comes to living life adventurously, honestly, & fully, who has shared about losing her sons. I think of our neighbor Marianne's sister Helen. Today is her 101st birthday. She lost her only son when he was small and she has lived all these years without him.
I think of others too, and I think to myself, "Wow, life is unfair." But I look at these same people and think, "Wow, life is beautiful, too."
Something I can't help but think about is the close relatives who aren't involved in our kids' lives, who haven't had a steady presence, haven't given the time to know and share the joy of them.
Our kids couldn't be more happy and well, I remind myself that they're not lacking in any way. But, the bigger the support group of people who are there for a kid & the more love & caring, the better. So it's too bad.
It's most unfortunate, though, for those who don't seem to know what they're missing.
There are others who would give anything to have their grandchild or niece or nephew in their lives, to cheer them on as they laugh, play, and grow. I keep thinking of that.
Back to these kids.. Mason is doing well after having all of his wisdom teeth (he had five) removed a week ago. It didn't go quite as planned but he handled it like the calm, tough kid he's always been for us. It slowed him down for just a few hours that evening.
He and Eric have football practice three hours each morning. Little boys have all different passions, and football was theirs. This will be their 8th season playing.
I'm anxious about this school year, unsettled, unsure that we're making the best decisions for all of them. Or more so, sure that we aren't. I want what's best for our kids.
Johnathan is stealthily sneaking up on twelve years old. It has just recently sunk in how close he is to teen-hood and how rapidly Mason & Eric changed starting around his age. Right now he's still our soft spoken, soft cheeked boy, but boy is he eating more like a teenager.
He's been surprising me with bursts of cleaning lately.. changing his sheets, vacuuming downstairs, and when I noticed someone had cleaned the toilet in their (four boys) bathroom, he told me he's been doing it once a week. Oh, glorious ray of wonder!!!
Lilly, is keeping right at Johnathan's heels in the growing up business. Yesterday they both had a friend over for a few hours. They were also both referred to the orthodontist at their dentist checkups this week. Sigh. She's creating with Legos at the moment.
Beau is keeping me on my toes while I watch him do standing stunts on his bicycle. He's very excited about getting supplies ready for 2nd grade. We're reading The Long Winter at night, a couple of chapters at a time. All three younger kids still listen to me read aloud. Pa just got official word that the train isn't going to make it to their little town on the prairie til spring. They are burning
twisted hay sticks to keep warm, and there is just a partial sack of wheat and a few potatoes left for food. The blizzards are dreadfully ongoing and it's only early January. Beau was growing quite distraught, so last night Lilly & I had to reveal to him that Almanzo Wilder will save the town and they'll all be fine.
Monday the younger three and I had a really good "Go Where It Takes Us" kind of day after their dentist appointments. That evening I chased this rainbow to the end of our road to get an open view. The size of it was incredible, my widest angle lens could only capture a fraction of it. I stood out in the rain and marveled until it faded away.
This was taken with the panorama feature on my phone:
I hope today takes you somewhere good.
You can learn more about Charlie at his Caring Bridge site.
There is a fund set up to help their family here.