My future mother-in-law has been asking for a blog post for months.
Last month, I was snowed in for five days, and when I showed up on her doorstep with margarine and eggs, her road still enveloped in feet of snow, she asked again.
On the drive home, I thought about it. Dismissed it. Scratched it away.
Because the truth is, I don’t know what to write about these days. When I started this blog, 5 and a half years ago, I was terribly depressed. I was reeling from a bad breakup. An eating disorder. A tendency to count calories. Or looks from cute boys. Or self-esteem wins.
I was trying to walk out my door each morning and see goodness oozing out car windows and shining on street corners.
Twice a week, I got through simply by showing up to bat. By letting a small ember burn in my belly.
I am a quiet fighter, a determined woman, and I needed to reclaim my life. It was only a matter of time.
In January, I bought my first house. In less than six months, I’ll walk down the aisle to stand in front of a man I can only assume was a gift from God. He is that good. He is that kind. I’ll become indoctrinated into a new family then.
My life is good. My life is full. My life is merry. But after shoveling three feet of snow off my car, my sidewalk, my front steps, my deck, I cannot help but think life is an uphill battle.
People never stop asking you things. When are you getting married? When are you having a baby? Why aren’t you having a baby? When are you having another one, and another one, and another one? Will your baby go to private school or public school? Will you send your baby to an Ivy League university? Will your baby ever get married? Will you be a grandparent?
And you stop along the way, and you wonder when life became this competition. When did life become a series of check check checks?
It’s worth stopping to see the small moments: the cars cleared out front, four hours and three aspirin later, the sea of neighbors hauling snow bit by bit, their front lawns swelling with icy hills.
Your dog being swallowed by the mountains of white on either side as she searches for grass, any grass, to mark her own. Her paws sliding so fast across the slick wood floor that she can’t stop and crashes into the wall chasing after a toy.
The red cheeks of a baby boy, plopped in a tiny sled, bundled head to toe, waiting for a push down the hill.
Those are the moments I caught that weekend. Those are the moments I hope to always hold tight.
Because between each check mark, each finish line, are sweet sweet stories of hard work and laughter, triumph and sadness. And those are the moments we live for. Those are the moments we hold.