Wednesday, March 12, 2008

We can all stop pounding vodka, my emails are no longer in Russian. Unfortunately, my dictionary still is. The problem seems to lie within the Baskerville font this time around, though I still can't say why. I was up all night trying to fix it, and I went to bed with that sick feeling in my stomach like I'd just wasted more time in this precious life. But the garbage men hauled off some large trash items I had placed out there, just as a test, so they saved me some time I would have blown on removing them myself. Perhaps it's all finding its own equilibrium. God bless the garbage men! I'll say it again, these guys have done more for world health than anyone in the last 150 years.

Not that my aluma-garbage poses a threat to world health.

I've been barking and whining about the DST change, but Matt reminded me how great it really is. He's right, of course. I want to wake up with the sun and get home from work before it goes down so I don't feel like the day is done and gone, all spent on bacon-fetching. I prefer taking out the garbage cans in the daylight, instead of dragging them down the driveway in the dark, with the silhouetted neighbors peering through the windows at me, scowling at the ruckus. Taking that first sip of coffee and seeing the morning sunlight casting a shadow of the blinds on the hardwood floor always warms my soul from the inside and revs up the day. Just the sight of it takes me back to some good moments: living the artist's life in that bungalow in Pasadena, waking up in the cottage on the coconut plantation during my honeymoon. I could sit and sip coffee all morning, just watching the shadow slide across the floor. And I have, at times prayerfully.

A moment from my honeymoon, best vacation of my life, nearly five years ago:

So DST is great, if only for the sunlight. And it's becoming easier. When the baby comes, you spend weeks begging the little bugger into a routine, and then she gets a cold and won't sleep through the night, throwing off any schedule you may have mastered, or at least mustered. You finally get her feedings synched with your timetable so you can fit in the rest of life -work, making dinner, doing the dishes- and then DST rolls around. Everyone adapts to the new time just fine, except the child, who is now waking up an hour earlier, needs a nap an hour earlier, is hungry an hour earlier. You'll get her whipped into shape and then she'll get sick again, or you'll go away on vacation and she'll be up late in the hotel, with her sleeping off hours in the car. Then you notice on the calendar that DST is going to roll around again in a couple weeks and you either give up entirely or force the issue -which is all nonsense to a child.

Children have a unique sense of time, alien to us. They understand God's sun and moon and the pangs of hunger and sleep. Clocks were invented by man as if to best God, See? I can measure your daylight! And then we go ahead and change them every six months without admitting their imperfection. To children, the clocks are merely a novel way to display numbers, with the meaningless flipping of symbols, and a way to measure only what they can and can't have right now.

This is why teaching patience is so important, and if you haven't learned it your child will teach you (and it will be a painful experience.) But if this life is a gift, then patience should be more than just tolerating the passing of time with a long wait. Without patience, life is an intolerable succession of inaccessible moments that makes joy fleeting. With patience, comes the moment to be able to reflect on past and current joys and the hope of them to come. It is here that the beautiful details of life reveal themselves to be the once and forever hiding place of God.