Saturday, May 28, 2005


Summer burst in without knocking first. Our rainy May turned into blazing May, ninety degree temperatures two days in a row. Originally, the weather forecasters said we'd have clouds and rain over the weekend, but glory be! They were wrong.

At 6:38 a.m., Babygirl woke me, asking if it were time to go to the "beach." When she says "beach," she actually means "pool." She knew that today the pool would open.

Instead of getting up at 6:38 a.m., I slept in five minute increments, sometimes ten or twenty minutes increments. She woke me over and over again, asking for a drink or socks or a new video. And with much vexation, I'd do her bidding, then crawl back into bed. Then, just as I'd drift back to sleep, she'd appear at my bedside again. I didn't get up until almost 9 a.m. and then, Babygirl raced me to the shower, stripping her clothes off and jumping in before I had a chance. She showered for twenty minutes while I cooled my heels, changed the sheets on the bed, put away clean laundry and puttered.

At noon, the kids were splashing in the pool, exulting in the eighty-degree heat. Babygirl sat for a long time on the edge of the wading pool before turning onto her tummy and sliding feet first into the water. I appreciate her slow, methodical approach to life. I'm like that myself in so many ways.

We stayed only until 1:30 p.m. Babygirl needed a nap. So did my husband.

After dinner, my husband went to the church to gather his materials for study. I took the four kids for a two mile walk. We are beginning our training regimen for our vacation in Walt Disney World. My boys are not in shape and I don't want to hear them bellyaching about being tired in the Florida muggy heat. They only complained a little.

When my husband returned home (about 6:00 p.m.), I took the boys to the pool again. This time, less than twenty children frolicked in the aquamarine pool. My twins played a raucous game of water basketball. YoungestBoy jumped off the diving board time and time again. I read more of Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry. Then my cell phone rang. A church woman was trying to reach my husband. I told her to call again and I turned off my phone so the call would ring at home. Then a bit later, I turned the phone back on, just in time to receive a phone call from my husband.

A church woman's husband was rushed to the hospital. He has lung cancer and he wasn't breathing.

Ten minutes later, we were in the car, heading home so my husband could go to the hospital. So much for his much-anticipated quiet evening of study at home. So much for staying at the pool until it closed at 8 p.m.

He called at 9:30 p.m. to tell me that the man had died. He finally returned home at 10:30 p.m.

Memorial Day weekend will never again be the same for that family.

I thought today how very small children have no concept of the future. They live here, today, not three months from now or next year. I need to stop staring off into the future and focus my eyes on my daughter's curls as she prances in her ducky float in the swimming pool. Tomorrow is not promised. We have today.

Savor it.


Blogger Julana said...

My dad was a minister. One summer Saturday, a member of the congregation shot himself, and ended up in the hospital. We left for a once-in-a-lifetime Cape Cod vacation, with him in serious/critical condition. When he passed away a few days after we arrived, we piled in the car and drove 24 hours straight through to get home for the funeral. I always think of this when you tell these stories of the whole family adjusting to the needs of a congregant. This is how minister's families often live. I'm not sure parishioners realize it.

7:28 AM  
Blogger M3 (Mary-Mia) said...

>Tomorrow is not promised. We have today.

So true. So absolutely positively true. And so hard to keep top of mind. That was a beautiful post. I catch myself putting my head down and just powering through days frantically running errands or meeting deadlines "until the weekend comes" or "until our vacation" or until whenever. And then something will happen, like news of a good friend with a life-threatening diagnosis, and it stops me cold. It reminds me not to wish away or waste any time. It makes me remember to enjoy each day, make it count somehow, make sure I focus on the things that make me and the people around me smile.

9:12 AM  
Blogger Bossy♥'s YOU said...

ahh froliking in the pool..carefree summer be a kid

1:34 PM  
Blogger Jan said...

I think I'll go sit around and watch my children play. Thanks for the reminder.

3:44 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

me too. off to watch my kids play. thanks.

9:35 AM  
Blogger Judy said...

Their still fun to watch, even in their twenties...

5:06 PM  
Blogger Lora said...

Yes, savor it, but that's hard to do at 6:38 a.m. Thanks for the reminder to live life noe.

8:18 PM  

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