Thursday, October 29, 2009

My rant about "The Good Lord"

It's been a long time since I've had a deadline on something, and now that I do, I find myself procrastinating like it's going out of style. And so what do I do, instead of doing this project? I sit down and write a blog. It reminds me of studying for exams in college. "Oh, this is a good time to organize my closet! Declare war on clutter!" "Oh, I must redecorate the room this very instant! Hang new pictures!" " Now is the logical time to put all my journals in chronological order from fourth grade through the present."

Today's random deep thought, brought to you by procrastination, is this: God probably doesn't mind any name for Himself, provided it is said in reverence, but if he DID have a pet peeve of a title, I bet it would be this appellation: " The Good Lord." It just dawned on me how ridiculously redundant, and also remote, it sounds. It's like the speaker is trying to butter Him up. Either that, or the speaker doesn't know him very well. I mean, you don't really hear theologians or Bible teachers or people on deep, meaningful spiritual pilgrimages referring to God this way. It's kind of like, " I knew Him once, when I was a kid. He was an okay guy." A tepid endorsement. I think it might be a generational, codgery thing. I mean, it's something that geezers call God: The Good Lord. No offense, all you geezers, but it's just not a young person thing. It strikes me as basic and flat. Might as well call him the Nice Lord. Ooo- let's find the smallest, blandest adjective for the biggest, most vibrant, powerful being in the universe!

I can just imagine God cringing.

This is my opinion. You can call Him "The Good Lord" all you want. Just don't let me hear it.

P.S. The above may totally make no sense. It's all due to the fulminations of procrastination in my mind. Pay me no mind.

P.P.S. As I have "gwunted and stwuggled" through this project tonight ( which I am not nearly finished), I thought of how Grampa M. used to say the following, which I thought was a quote from himself, but I googled it and it turns out that it's attributed to Francis Bacon... ( ha ha, Grampa M. and Francis Bacon...birds of a feather...): "Reading maketh a full man... and writing an exact man." I have had to stop and really think what I am trying to say, and what I really believe. It's hard work, my friends.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Sick day

Last night I jokingly said that I wished I could just get swine flu and get it over with. All this hype and hysteria over said flu - and the vaccine dilemma- is driving me mildly batty at times. And then Brad got home and I could tell right away that the hoarseness and achiness he'd been experiencing the last time I saw him - late Wednesday night- was more than just normal exhaustion. He looked like a Halloween haggard version of his normal self. At first, we thought it was just because he had been working something like 48 hours in the last three days. But last night, as he coughed deep, juicy coughs and shuddered with chills, it became quickly obvious that something more sinister was afoot. I thought about going to sleep in the other room but I was too tired to move. I wondered if I was about to get my wish, and face the piggy influenza once and for all.

About four this morning, I told him that he really shouldn't go in to work today. But he did. I fell asleep again, as he got ready to leave, and prayed that someone at the jail would send him home. And thankfully, his lieutenant sent him to the doctor, who sent him home. Once again, Lt. Lynn comes to the rescue. My prayuhs were ansud. ( That's my best written imitation of a certain southern gentleman, who shall remain nameless.)

Did I mention that Brad's worked like a bazillion hours recently? I missed him so much. So when he came home today, I almost didn't care that he was sick. Okay, yes, I did care. I felt sorry for him and wanted to take care of him. But part of me was just jumping up and down, just glad to SEE him. Glad that he was home and able to rest. They say he has bronchitis and sinusitis, and that he's pretty contagious so he wasn't really supposed to be near Aiden - or me...but I figure, hey, I spent the better part of the night lying inches from a sputum spewing sufferer so I'm sure my immune system is already engaged in hand to hand combat with the invader. Brad played peekaboo and keep-away with Aiden but I know Aiden was glad to at least get a glimpse of his pater familias, which is more than he has had since Sunday- which might as well be nigh unto forever to a child.

I was glad that I had cleared my day so I didn't have any big responsibilities to involve me and the things I had thought I might do were easily postponed. I went out to fill his prescriptions and pick up some things but most of the day was spent puttering at home. I made chicken soup from scratch - something I don't think I've ever done before. I felt quite nurturing and wifely. Well, I went way overboard on the pepper so it was a bit overpowering. My ascension to domestic goddesshood will have to wait.

It was raining outside. The comforting, warm smell of carrots and onions and celery and garlic and chicken filled the house. And I felt positively cozy inside. Just happy to have him home. Almost like I was getting a sick day myself - that gleeful pleasure of staying home from school and treating yourself delicately. I needed a low key day; we all did. It was quite delicious.

Now I need to go to bed, to aid my immune system in its battle against the bad guys which I am sure are there (as Brad would say: "lurking in the inky shadows"), despite my incessant hand washing and repeated applications of hand sanitizer.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Reflections on October 3rd

Aaaand, here it is again. This anniversary that I'm not quite sure what to do with. I wanted to go out and do something special, like go to the monastery in Conyers and look at bonzai trees and have a picnic to celebrate Andrew...because I think this day should be all about reflecting on the beauties and joy of being alive. I'm always skeptical when people do things and say, "This is what the departed person would have wanted..." But I'm pretty sure that it IS what Andrew would have wanted people to do to remember him- have a day of being fully alive. Of good times. Of appreciating autumn.

But this whole Grampa being in the hospital thing has made the day a little uncertain. Which maybe is a good thing. I don't know that I really want to concentrate my full powers of memory on this day. It's enough to have a low level of gut gnawing sadness.

Five years is a strange amount of time. It sounds like such a solid, rounded block. It seems like a long time - there have been a lot of changes since 2004- but it's not a long time.

Part of me really misses being in New Hampshire on this day. It feels wrong not to be there. We've talked about moving back someday. Georgia doesn't really feel like home in a lot of ways. But whenever we do go back to NH to visit, there's this odd feeling of being off kilter. When we were there for Grandma Sweet's funeral this summer, we took an hour to drive our dear old back roads and visit our favorite cemetery in Harrisville...and it was a beautiful day...the light streaming through the trees, but the light was sad. And it didn't have anything to do with Grandma's funeral that day. Honestly, I know it sounds strange, but I thought the light looked old and sad... and my gut told me that I'd never feel like this was home again either. I realize I am not missing a place but a time in my life when the world was all right, when I felt at home in a number of places. Because being at home means being with your family. And we haven't been all together in a long time. And it will be quite a while, I imagine, before we are all together again. But I believe that someday we will be together again. I'm not just saying that because it sounds nice; I really, truly believe it. Sadness, loss, absence...there is just something in me that cannot believe that these will go on and on, unresolved forever. My heart does not accept that possibility as ringing true. I believe to my very core that there is a God and that He is good, that human suffering matters to Him, and that He is, in His very essence, love. And that He will ultimately right all wrongs, heal all wounds, wipe away all tears. So while right now I am living in the present, acknowledging today's sadness, being grateful for the fact that it doesn't feel as bad as it once did, there is a part of me that will never get used to it and cannot accept it, that longs for home, and that part looks forward to the future and reminds me that this life is not all there is. I can't say I really look forward to October 3rd, but I am grateful for the perspective it always gives me.

So to all the people who remember us and send their love today, it is enough for me that you just remember Andrew and celebrate the profoundly wonderful fact that you have a great and precious opportunity- the chance to live- and beyond that, the chance to live eternally. Make it a good life.