The love and support and prayers and emails and facebook messages and smoke signals and ham radio transmissions that I...we...our family received in response to Friday's post was nothing short of overwhelming. I shed more than my share of happy tears that day. And every day since. Tears of gratitude and humility. Tears of longing to thank each of you personally. I've said before that I'm so thankful we don't get what we deserve. Because I don't deserve such kindness and generosity. The love that has been heaped upon me by strangers. Strangers no longer. Yet there it is. Here you are. You. Who said that and did that and are doing all of that. My heart is full to bursting and I don't know how to say or show how much your prayers and love mean to us.
How many times can a person's life change? How many times can I say "You changed my life"? That she changed my life? That he and they and that...changed our lives? Can I say it just one more time? Because it's true. No one is alone. We are not alone and YOU are not alone. I know that for certain now. In my life, I never really felt a part of anything. I felt odd and different and alone. I felt like a soldier of one, carrying the weight of I don't know what to a destination unknown. But I had to do it, and I had to do it alone.
But I was wrong. I'm wrong. No one is asked to do this alone. Life is not a solitary pursuit. Whether we know it or like it or want it or realize it, we are born into a family and a country and a world and a community. We are inextricably knit together and by recognizing that link, by exalting in our interconnectedness we, so small and insignificant, can become very big and oh so significant to one another.
When my husband was a little boy, things fell apart financially for his family. They went from being quite materially comfortable to being very poor. He's told me stories of two sisters (earthly sisters or nuns I don't know) who would bring their family five gallon buckets of leftover food from catered events. They would eat the leftover food from catered events brought to them in five gallon buckets. And they survived. Eventually things got better and now it's just a story. A distant memory.
So I know things can get worse. Perhaps they will. I have to be ready for that. But I'm not going to expect that. I'm going to expect the best while knowing that if the worst happens, somehow it will eventually work out. I know I've said that before, but honestly I wasn't really sure. After this weekend, I KNOW. I know that things will be okay. That they are already okay. Being poor is not the worst thing that can happen to a person. Accepting charity is not the most terrible thing a person might do in their lives. This is not terrible.
I just looked at the clock. 11:53 p.m., y'all. Ask me if I've done any lesson planning for next week. Go ahead...ask me!
Hah! That is a big negativo. Also no meal planning. Or party planning. Although that last one probably goes without saying.
And to think I had intended to tell you about the wok that Tommy found burried in the side of our hill. And how we scrubbed it out and then Tommy cooked our dinner in it over a fire in a rusty, dilapidated burn barrel that he hauled into our front yard. And how we used a plastic tiny-tots table for "prep" and the big girls insisted that it was the best day of their lives on several occasions throughout the afternoon. But since I've already rambled on for too long, I guess I'll have to leave you wondering what it was I meant to say!
|practicing those home ec skills|
|safety first 'round here|
|potatoes from our garden|
|note the jacket worn as cape. tres chic!|
|dang that's hot!|
|it's a rough life|
|"pollo al disco"|
|watering down the grass "you know...so it doesn't catch on fire"|
|everyone's a comedian|
|yep, dogs prowling in the background...as usual|
Thank you. All of you. Thanks for hanging out with me here. And thanks making the world a better, smaller, more beautiful place.