Join me on a little thought-journey, will you? Just to set the tone for this post of maybe-ten Thankfuls (we’ll see – I haven’t decided whether or not to count them yet).
So. Just stop and take a moment. Keep breathing, keep reading, but if you can, try to block out everything else that’s going on, and just focus. Notice the funny shapes of the letters, and the incredible way we infer so much from these amazing symbols in their various configurations. Feel them going into your eyes; their shapes each registering in your retinas and sending flashes of information along your neural pathways, bestowing understanding – transferring ideas originating in my brain, out through the Blogosphere in series of 1’s and 0’s, and off your screen in wavelengths of light, ready to form similar synapse patterns in your brain, as you receive the thoughts.
Now we’re ready to go.
Imagine that we’re standing face to face. I have something to show you.
We both step forwards, and I hold out my cupped hands to you. I’ve got a small, half-smile on my face, and a look of happy anticipation, as though I know that something wonderful is going to happen next. I’ve got my hands cupped in front of me, carefully holding something very precious.
Remember the place where you were when it happened. Remember the people who were around you, and the things which were said. Remember the clothes you were wearing, and their texture against your skin. Remember the temperature of the world around you when this memory took place. Remember all the tiny details – the nuances of the memory, and how important they are to it. Remember the smells and the scents which were present. Cast your mind’s eye around the landscape in which the original moment occurred. Call to mind the way you felt inside – the way it made your spirit feel to realise at the time that this moment, RightNow, is what life is all about…and let your heart and mind revel in the delight of that memory, and its intense happiness, which is no less diminished by time, but polished by the passing days, until it glitters in the cupboards of your mind, ready to be taken out and basked in.
Just be still with your memory for a few moments. Let the act of remembering re-gild the cradle of neural pathways in which it nestles. Make them stronger. Keep hold of this loveliness.
Now I’m ready.
This week I’ve been blessed enough to have several moments of incredible happiness. Not just the ordinary type of ‘Oh, how nice!’ happiness, but the kind of happiness which stops the entire world to let you enjoy that moment more fully. The kind of happiness where you cannot help but grin, because you’re already smiling before you realise it. The kind of happiness where your heart feels as though it really has begun to glow, with a bright, golden, syrupy feeling of warmth and wonder and delight, and the corners of your soul crinkle up and get twinkly as they reflect the light shining from your eyes. The kind of happiness which envelopes your whole being and either makes you laugh or shout or jump or just become still, and treasure the moment silently, letting it take you over completely.
Those moments. Ones I’ll treasure:
The sight of a small person on speeding legs, with arms stretched out wide, topped off with a HUGE grin, running straight towards me, into my arms, nearly bowling me over with the weight of it, to be whirled around and around in the sunshine, before being caught up into a massive hug, snuggled close and gently rocked side to side as I sing into their ear “You’re my favourite [name here] in the whole wide world; You’re my favourite [name here] it’s true; You’re my favourite [name here] in the whole wide world; ‘Cos there’s not another one I love like you.”
And then the sight of the other small person, who had been waiting impatiently at the other end of the grass in front of the cafe by the sea, gearing up to take their turn at doing exactly the same thing, with every bit as large of a cuddle and a grin and the song at the end.
The feeling of Husby walking up behind me as I go about kitchen-y chores, getting in my way and hampering me from working as he wraps his arms all around me and snuggles his scrapybristly chin into the side of my cheek for a huge hug, and just stopping to enjoy it. And hug him back and stand for long minutes, knowing that whatever our ups and downs and challenges and wonders, we belong.
The utter wonder of a hundred aeroplane contrails left like pick-a-sticks across the sky, sparkling bright white, silver and gold in the morning sun as it bathes them in light against an intense, vivid blue, and watching as they slowly dissolve, becoming feathery and lighter – less like lines carved with precision, and more like fluffy, rippling smudges of finger-paint smoothed across the vast, arching upturn of sky.
Learning, with excitement, that I can wish on lost eyelashes (then inexplicably losing about 8 in three days) and taking great care to sweep each one up onto a fingertip, balance it there for a moment, thinking with a smile in my heart of the person who told me, and then blowing the eyelash away into the world with one swift breath, ready to carry my wish to the stars and help make it come true (hey, I can dream, right?).
Discovering (as I wrote it) that I love quickly and trust slowly, but that in spite of my propensity to love (and love and love), there are a growing number of people I trust, and being able to say that to one of them, and to have it said back in return…incredible.
Receiving just-the-right-amount-tipsy and beautifully harmonious but utterly, wonderfully bonkersmad messages from a friend and her friend (who has a gorrrgeous singing voice, like chocolate silk) as they duetted together just for me, because they could, and it was fun. I actually laughed so hard at their discussions about the duet, the flubs and ad-libs that I had to hide myself in the back of the van (I listened before my clinic opened) for fear that anyone peering through the windows would see me and think me unprofessional because I could barely breathe from laughing with such delight.
Picking up a pen and paper frequently throughout the week to continue writing a lengthy missive to someone who warms my day, without knowing it, without even being there, just because I’ve thought of our friendship, how much it means to me, and how much I relish being “stuck with” her.
The knowledge that from now until I’m 90, sunsets will hold a deeper and more wonderful meaning to me.
That my first of the ‘Kicking Cancer’s Ass’ posts was wonderfully well received, and that together we raised money for a thoroughly good cause.
Receiving a BIG ol’ box in the post (which I had to go and fetch) and needing to wait THE ENTIRE DAY to open it, because Other Things, and then finally getting to it to discover that it was packed with an armchair tour of the sender’s summer, and information about the places she’d been to, and meaningful souvenirs of each place, showing that in spite of distance and quiet and busyness, she’d taken me with her in her heart. And (amongst other, truly amazing things) two tiny, discovered doves inside a sand dollar, BEACH in shells and oils, and an (against dress code but who cares) infinity ‘wishlet’, which has not left me yet, and is tied tight around my left wrist as a constant reminder of just how very, very, very incredamazingly lucky I am to have such a fabulous BlogWife. (Not to mention the added mental giggle it gave me as I wondered if anyone would ask me about the bracelet and then I’d have to remember not to slip and use the term ‘BlogWife’, so I didn’t come off as a complete lunatic – fortunately it hasn’t happened yet!)
Texts and emails back and forth with one of the (relatively few) close-in-Real-Life friends I have, culminating in a couple of ginormous emails and then a text saying that she felt like she’d gotten a reply from a celebrity, which made me laugh, because it just goes to show the way the Blogosphere can build you into a ‘persona’, when she and I both know full well that she’s seen me fall over repeatedly trying to catch a tiny, soft frisbee as we played, drunk, in my living room at about 2am.
The shining, wonderful light which is the knowledge that on Sunday I will be going to see my Soulie, after FAR too long, and that in spite of the letters and texts we’ve been sending, NOTHING will be more wonderful or more grounding or more affirming than us catching sight of each other, running towards each other and smooshing each other into absolutey HUGEMASSIVE hugs, our faces tangibly grinning as though we’d stuck rainbows upside-down in our mouths and they were pressing our cheeks out sideways. Then there will be tea. And cake (probably) and talking and talking and talking.
AND (bonus!) I got a marriage proposal, apropos of nothing (apparently) – just because the chap in question has decided he loves me and wants us to be married. Which is incredibly sweet, because he’s only four (my Soulie’s son – which is how I heard about the proposal – he just came out and told her this, completely out of the blue). So I’ll keep him in the wings, and if, one day, I’m a glamorous 70-something year old widow, and he’s still interested, I might have bagged myself a hot, 40-something toy boy.
Did YOU have any of those incredibly happy moments this week? Was your memory a truly, truly wonderful one you’d like to share? Have you got Ten Things to be Thankful about? You know where to write…