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Friday, July 31, 2015

Right Around the Corner

Photo by composingfun
Apologies, dear reader, that I couldn’t write a blog post this week.
Photo by Hamburger Helper
I tried on Monday, but as soon as I sat down with my computer my youngest daughter came and asked if I could help her make scrambled eggs for breakfast. She got a kids’ cookbook at her day camp and was beside herself with anticipation, as she is considering attending the Le Cordon Bleu as soon as she’s old enough. She’s seven now, but eighteen is right around the corner.
Photo by Jeremy Noble
On Tuesday I mulled over several ideas for a writing topic, but my son asked if we could have a Donut Date. We do that occasionally, when all the other members of the fam are occupied elsewhere and we find ourselves alone. We walk the mile or so down to Dunkin’, have a nosh and a chat, then hoof it back. It takes a little chunk out of the day, but he’s on the brink of twelve, and his departure for college is starting to feel like it’s right around the corner.
Photo by Jenna Carver
On Wednesday I had an idea for what I wanted to write about this week, and I got up early so I could hammer it out while the rest of the house still slept. But then my middle daughter—who usually sees no value to the day until the sun has passed its apex and is on the way down—got up early too, and wanted to discuss something that’s been bothering her. She’s showing the signs of approaching puberty, and I’m terrified for her about middle school because she’s a little too much like me, and junior high was the worst two years of my life, bar nothing. I’d rather have a limb amputated sans anesthetic than live through seventh grade again. So even though my girl’s just ten at the moment, adolescence and high school are going to pass in the blink of an eye. And they’re right around the corner.
Photo by Tetra Pak
Thursday I thought I’d get some time to write in the late morning and early afternoon. Then my husband called to say that his schedule had opened up around lunch, and he asked if I wanted to meet him for a mid-afternoon date while the kiddos were at camp. With three children in the house and all the babysitter-age teens in the neighborhood overbooked with their own hyper-scheduled activities, alone times with the old man are few and far between. So I put on some lipstick, spritzed myself with a shot of perfume, and met my beau for lunch. Because an acquaintance of mine just lost her husband in a car accident. You never know what’s right around the corner.
 I intended to block out Friday as a writing day, but then found out that a friend I hadn’t seen in fifteen years was in town with her family and had some free time she didn’t expect. I’d never met her children, so I invited them over. As a goal-oriented, time-challenged pragmatist, my natural inclination is to view other people as obstacles to my plans and challenges to the control I exert over my space and time. But I’m learning that relationships are the very heart of life’s meaning and value. As teacher John Keating asserted in Dead Poets Society, “…medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.” Having lost a person I fully expected to see again someday, I want to remember that I never know what’s coming around the corner for any of my friendships.
So, kind reader, I have nothing to offer today. I have failed in my ambitious attempt to write a new blog post each week for one full year. I don’t suspect that my musings are grand or profound or entertaining enough that you will be heartbroken to miss one this week. Still, I feel I have let you down.
But if you’d like to come over and make scrambled eggs, go for a donut and coffee, sit with me to talk about navigating life, have a lunch date or pop in for dinner, I’m here for you.
I can always write later. Because the stage of life is coming when I’m no longer so needed and stretched and fragmented, and the unfilled hours of the day yawn in front of me like an empty road.
It’s probably right around the corner.
Photo by Ramiro Ramirez


  1. While I am incredibly sorry for being one of the reasons for which you missed your opportunity to post a blog this week, I am incredibly thankful for being able to see you after all these years. Thank you for opening your home to me and my family. And look, I found your blog and enjoyed the read as I prepare for a night's

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  2. I'm honored (and maybe a little embarrassed!) that you read this! We had a wonderful visit with you and your family, and I am so glad you had time to come see us! Don't be the least bit sorry!

  3. Loved your blog. You write so honestly and so impassionedly, I'm glad you didn't have time to compose something else. Now I know why you were so busy all week.