I had some big plans. Well, maybe not big plans, but other plans. I thought about re-examining the Peace Experiment of 2013, or acquiescing to peer pressure and venturing into Voskamp territoy with The Greatest Gift, or even just getting up a few minutes earlier, centering myself with something nobler than my twitter feed.
But then the eldest took a late night field trip to the emergency room. The man got sick. And then a kid got sick. Maritime storms lashed us up and down for a few days and I decided to just feel sorry for myself instead.
This is Advent 2015 and while Instagram is alight with advent wreaths and sweater capes, my beeswax candle has been poked mercilessly by a mysterious culprit. We're drowning in laundry. Eczema will be the death of me. 2015 was long and hard and I just want it done with already.
And yet... we have slowed beyond our control, forced to rest and wait and put things off to the side. The six year old is asleep on the sofa, home sick from school three days straight. The Muppets / John Denver mash-up A Christmas Together sings him a lullaby and the tree glows against his feverish cheeks. The girl will ride her bike home alone, as she's done everyday for the last month, thrilled with this first glorious, cold-aired taste of freedom. The eldest is prepping for his own life change: Star Wars with friends at the cinema and dreaded Christmas exams.
Our life feels so different than it did a year ago, though it looks much the same (sick kids and all). And whatever the New Year will bring is (peacefully, gratefully) held loosely in open hands.
For now we wait with the world for a coming Light. We'll listen to the songs of my childhood, trade beds and cough-duty in the night. We'll make banana bread and I will eat too much of it. We'll put off all our Christmas shopping until the week before (as is our custom) and we'll forget who we wrote Christmas cards to. We'll fight and sleep and watch movies more than we should.
And right now, I will sit in the silence of a sleeping child, a man at work, a mother with her words. It is Advent, after all.