that moment when…(and this summer more than ever…)
all week i’ve been feeling it. that moment that best can be likened to the glorious fraction of time when you’ve been out in tippity teetering heels all night, when your toes have been practically yelping in protest and the bones in your feets have been threatening to cut you off at the ankles, when every ounce of you wanted to wriggle out of this unnatural state of constraint, but you had to make like a grownup and prance around in footwear that does its best to topple you, and sometimes makes you chew on your cheek besides. but then, finally, the night and the torture come to an end, and there in the dark, and practically running, you round the bend, you lurch toward the door and you begin the release for which you’ve been throbbing: you scrape the toe of one pointy shoe against the penned-in heel of the other, and you kick the darn foot-clamps clear across the kitchen.
you stand there, for a minute or two, just drinking in the feel of your bones falling back to their pre-ordained order. you listen to the flow of the blood trickling back to the tips of your squeezed-colorless tootsies.
you savor the long-awaited rush of relief. the busting-out-of-whatever-bound-you.
which, pretty much, is how it feels around here. more so than in a very long time. because summer in this old house has arrived with a groundswell of holy hallelujah. boy one is finished with college. boy one is hanging around. boy two just finished with grade school. ergo, this is a summer that comes with a full ladle of finish. and, perhaps, an extra-deep dollop of purest enchantment.
this is, more than any summer that i can recall, one of those moments when the hours make like salvador dali had at them. they warp into stretched-out proportions. they expand, not contract. they breathe. and sometimes, like sunday afternoon when my firstborn and i plopped into old wicker chairs and stayed there for the better part of three hours, they stand perfectly utterly still.
i am, in this seasonal opening act, indulging in time. i am whirling, deep down inside, in the rarest of joy, the feeling that somehow i’ve cupped my hands, sunk them deep in a font of holiest waters, and come up spilling; splattering drop after delectable drop.
i’m not worrying, for heaven’s sake, about what’s for dinner, i’m not looking at clocks. (though i am watching ice boxes magically empty, and i am setting world records for laundry.) i’m feeling the lumpety-thump of my heart when the sound of the footsteps comes down the stairs at times when i’m usually alone and the house is usually silent. like a kid on christmas morning, i’m peeking through cracks in the door at two sleeping boys with no need for hurry.
maybe i love it all the more because i know it won’t last. and not only because i’ve been around the block enough times to know that, soon enough, the days will be so hot and so sticky we’ll all be wishing for igloos. and popsicles will seem a sensible breakfast.
maybe it’s all the sweeter because i never imagined we’d all have one more summer together. i hadn’t pictured four cereal bowls plopped on the table, each one blanketed in warm-from-the-field farmer berries. i hadn’t imagined the windows rolled down in the old station wagon, and me and my boys blaring the radio, wending our way to no particular anywhere. i hadn’t considered boy upon boy curled up on the couch, arms and shoulders entwined, words of brotherly wisdom being imparted in whispers.
for now, it’s one fleeting drink-it-all-in suspension of time.
we’re back to the place, and the moment, when the letting loose rubs you all over. like a terry cloth towel before it’s worn thin. it’s that magical interlude when the season is new, when we’re just on the cusp, and everything is raw and deep and our pores are wide open and we’re guzzling it down. right in here, in this opening act of summer’s production, the season of so few cares, we’re hard at work simply savoring.
and this particular summer it comes with a brand of relish that i’ll never ever forget.
this just might be the summer whose frames i’ll play and replay till the last gasp i breathe on this earth.
well, goodness gracious, i got a wee bit sidetracked — make that a lot sidetracked — here this morning when my ferocious jungle cat (he who seems to be showing off in recent days, proving to any and all that he might be old but he ain’t over yet) carried into the house — into the very middle of the family room’s old persian rug, mind you — a still-wriggling, but-not-for-long critter, clutched in the sharp-toothed grip of said hunter cat. i let out a yelp, as is my usual inclination, and hip-hopped in circles till i got the duo to skitter back through the rip of the old screen door. it set me to quaking for a few minutes there, and then i needed to settle back in to the rhythms above. and, oh goodness, the wonders of summer took on whole new dimensions.
and in further keeping with this slow-time summer, i’ve just spent the last hour plopped on the post-college kid’s new navajo rug, chatting about his early morning adventures procuring yet another job. normally i fidget till i hit the friday-morning-publish button, but not today. today i know that all’s in due time. and if it unfolds slowly, it’s all the more glorious….
finally, before i go, a most blessed birthday i wish for my beloved friend cecilia and her forever love, gary, who serendipitously and marvelously share the same birthday. this is a big one for ceci, a day of more than usual import. i send love and prayers in double dose.
so before i sign off: what do you savor most at the start of this laid-back season……
My heart is in my mouth, so no words can come out. Loving you, your dear ones, and praying for Cecilia and Gary. How lovely they share the day. And how wonderfully you soak in all the precious moments.
loving you back, sweetheart….
We have had a tad bit too much rain here these days so i am still waiting for some serious spring into summer weather. Which when it comes I will be wanting popsicle’s for breakfast. I love that.
it’s actually sweater weather here today too. one minute sweaters, the next minute barefeet and shorts…..frozen yogurt and fruit is pretty much a breakfast bowl tucked in the freezer. then it’s not too far a leap to a plain old popsicle……
drink it all in! Me, I was following you-know-who around the house like a puppy dog this morning while he was getting ready for work. He was looking for his sunglasses; I was stealing every moment I could!
steal those moments, baby doll! they fleet, as we both know too well….
Oh, I love seeing your red garden clogs perched upon a comfy cushion! Enjoy this well-earned, glorious expanse of suspended time, my friend! And sending much love to Cecilia and Gary as they celebrate their shared birthday. xoxo
and happy blessed 33 a couple days after the fact, dear friend…..may your feets too find a perch upon a pillow…….
one of the most blessed times in the garden as late spring turns the corner to summer: orange asian poppies and japanese iris stand tall beside draping double peonies; hosta’s foliage and miscanthus’ spires have grown lush and thick at the garden’s edge; thick storm doors stand left open as thinner screen doors are used, and the patio becomes another room in our house; fruits ripen and our young ones rush outside after dinner to pick fresh strawberries to eat (blueberries and stone fruits are ripening but still await summers hotter days and nights); my daughter counting down to last day of school, and expectations for the start of long summer nights, playing down the block late, after dinner. these are some of the things i savor now.
so so beautiful. always takes my breath away when i find my beloved brother here at the table, where there will always be a place of honor set for him…..because i am so blessed to have you, david, as my deep and soulful brother….xoxox