in between dust and dust…

Today as I sip my coffee and listen to my children argue over the finer points of video games I am struck with a profound sense of gratitude. Immediately following that I am reminded about how very temporary we are. Living here, in this modern-ish time we are transient compared to the mountains and the deserts. We are passers-by to the clouds that form and disperse and form again. We are dust before we live and we are dust after we die. In between, we are cells and skin and compassion and anger, gift and curse, air and water, muscle, sinew, word, flesh, heartbeat, bare hands, holding tight to whatever is warm when things turn cold.

I am thinking about my grandmother and about all of my family who have gone ahead into the great who knows. I am thinking about loss and about this present moment. I’m doing that a lot lately and it’s a strange, unfamiliar and uncomfortable habit. I am thinking about having peace in the right now and letting that become bricks under my feet rather than trying to pour concrete to last the next three hundred miles. I am thinking about the apple core on the table and the shoes strewn on the floor and about the feet that keep growing because of those apples and instead of complaining I stop and I take this in. I grab the smallest of the small people I’m in charge of and I give him a squeeze because I can. One day, I think to myself, he’ll be running around another house in another state probably or another country but now, right now he’s here, shirtless and shoeless, a bristling bundle of unbounded joy. He is mountain and desert and dust. He is air and water, muscle, sinew, word, flesh, heartbeat, bare hands, holding tight to whatever is warm when things turn cold.

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