Thursday, May 5, 2011

the light that lifts me up

Sometimes a weight comes.

You carry it around. After a day or two, you think: You still here?

So, you feel it out. You wonder: Hmmm, where are you coming from?

Is it a cyclic thing, like the moon, or a slowspun wheel, clicking onto Sad briefly before moving on?

Is it the news that a dear friend lost one of her friends to cancer a few days ago? Her friend was 39.

Is it the strange energy from recent world news, spreading out like stone-rippled water?

Is it the Busy? The trying to stay ahead and on top of things?

Is it the Not Sleeping Enough?

What is it?

I feel around.

I sit in the quiet and try to find the source.

But I don't know it and can't find it, exactly. So… do I stay here, sifting, or do I try to lift myself up to the light?

I reach into my day…

and lift the light out.

It is morning. I hold an egg, still warm, just laid by a proud hen. I cup it in my hand. It is clean and round and perfect.

I watch my girl's face as she plays violin for her dad after breakfast. It's not even a day after her first ever violin lesson. She is so delighted.

I wait for my kids to make birthday cards for their friend. They work on their cards for hours. I am not allowed to see!

I sit at the table and read a book that makes me laugh out loud not once, not twice, but three times in just as many pages. 

Just-after-lunchtime, we go out into the day. We take our friend out for present shopping! For cake eating and hot chocolate drinking! Her smile makes the whole day sing.

I listen to the laughter of children. 

Late afternoon, and I watch my kids at art class, heads bent over the paper. Their focus feels like someone holding something vital in place. 

When we get home, dinner is ready and waiting, made by my beautiful husband. It is delicious. Each bite tastes like love.

Night time. I listen to my children making tangram puzzles on the floor.

The dishwasher whispers in the distance.

The kitten reaches a pink tongue and licks her back.

The stairs creak as the kids laugh and chatter their way upstairs to get ready for bed.

The light is there in every single moment.

The light that,

if I focus on it,

can lift me straight up,

and leave me smiling inside.



  1. Lovely. I admire how you can capture the simplest emotions of life (even those that don't quite have a name - melancholy perhaps?) so eloquently. How many times have we all felt like this but rather than look for the light and the seek the joy we get caught up in the negativity.

    I am curious....what book made you laugh three times aloud? I must add it to my list!

  2. Beautiful, Helena.

    You know what else is beautiful?


  3. Taking time to enjoy all of our different emotions is quite lovely, without needing to know why we are feeling that way. It is. And it will change, just like the light.

  4. You have such a beautiful way of expressing things. Thank you for sharing this. I am so sad to hear of your friend's passing.

  5. After a pretty crap week, I love your words!

  6. I read your posts some days and time stands still. Thanks for that. You write so beautifully.

  7. Helena, what can I add to these comments? You have such a beautiful way with words. I love to read them and today they make me stop and consider all I have that is good. I, like Jess, would love to know the book that made you laugh.

  8. So much awareness, making each moment so meaningful. Even moving through the indescribable ones...beautiful. Have a wonderful Mother's Day and weekend!

  9. Thanks so very much, everyone. It means a huge amount to have my words connect with you all, and read your responses! It makes me feel warm and fine, like the world's not big at all, and never insurmountable :)

    About the book I was reading; having not read it all the way through I don't want to recommend it, yet (I am a perfectionist that way!). Maybe it'll suck by the end?! But so I don't leave you hanging, instead I'll say: any book by Terry Pratchett makes me laugh out loud, like all the time, all the way through! Thanks to my niece, I've become a big fan, and my son now loves his books for younger readers.

    For grown-ups, I'd start with Colour of Magic and go from there. For kids I'd start with The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents, or the Wee Free Men series. Yeah, I know. I could go on and on! :)

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I love hearing from you! Thank you for your heartfelt, thoughtful responses—they lift me, and give me light.