It's been a long hot summer.
And it goes on.
My Momo always said, "If you don't have anything nice to say...." you know the rest right? And that about sums up why I've been such a slacker of a blogger these past couple of months. I don't really want to bore you, let alone myself, with the long litany of self-absorbed whining that has threatened to over take me.
The thing is, I know better. I know how inordinately blessed a life I lead. I know that I have more than any one woman could ever ask or imagine. I have a roof over my head. I have the "problem" of too MUCH food. Enough that I have to clean things out of the refrigerator. Enough that I sigh over the state of my midsection.
I have air conditioning, running water, health, children, love. I have choices, freedoms, knowledge. I have work that I love, passions and time to pursue them. So really, I have no business complaining about the heat, the drought, the financial questions that plague me... how will we... what if... how long can we go one this way... what happens when...
But even as I know all these things, I've had a hard time coming up with much to say here. I don't mean to say that I've been depressed or in a constant state of worry. I have laughed this summer. I have snuggled. I have created. I have. But there has been this underlying thread of listlessness, of worry, of doubt. I have been treading water, and so long as I don't look up and see the ocean around me, I do okay. I go about each day, doing my best, trying to count my blessings, trying to have faith, trying to rise to the occasion of this time and this place in the history of us.
But I don't want to just do okay. What I want is to be aware, always, of how truly, remarkably, wonderful it is, THIS time and THIS place. I don't want to smile in spite of my troubles. I want to rejoice because of my blessings.
So this week I'm going to try to bring to you some of the things that have really moved me lately. Things that have really spoken to the beauty of right now. Things that are helping me to gain and keep the sort of perspective on life that I want to demonstrate for the young men that I love.
Today, I give you, Emmanuel Jal.
He is a former child soldier from the Sudan. In the video below he tells a little bit about his life, how he was rescued and his hopes for his homeland. For me, the most powerful part of this short video is the last 4 minutes or so, when he sings a song that he wrote for a woman, British aid worker Emma McCune. It was because of her love and courage that he is able to dance and to sing today. The result is a full-body, unabashed display of passionate gratitude.
His simple statement, "I stand here because somebody cared," applies to all of us though, doesn't it?
And you know what? I find it just about impossible to at once feel sorry for myself and also deeply grateful for the people who have cared for me. It can't be done.
Today I will be grateful. Passionately grateful.