Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Butterflies...if you throw it hard enough.

So much has been going on and I've been so busy that I've neglected writing...I hate having to play catch up. So I won't...I'll just brush over the bare details. Brian finished school and I love having him back. He's at home working on the house and being bored while loving every minute of it. I'm his sugar mama.

I've been coaching Track & Field (notice how track & field automatically gets written with an ampersand instead of the word "and"? That's really weird...has it been branded and packaged that way? How did that happen?) for the Special Olympics for a few weeks now and I am loving it. It is easily the most rewarding thing I've done and I have a lot of fun.

Work is going well. The weather has been warm. I planted a cute garden with a little shrub and a mini white picket fence and I transplanted tulips from the back and put them in the front. They promptly died. Just goes to show you what an effect your environment can have on your health!

My parents came back from Europe and my brother gets back from Nepal tonight...all the Knox's back in one country...hooray!!

Hmmm...what else have I been up to? Oh, I know...I just wrote the most boring blog post ever.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Making Memories

Yesterday I packed a picnic lunch (using all the nifty picnic paraphernalia I brought back from Korea) and met Brian at the University where he had finished his fourth of six exams. The sun was shining and we set up our picnic blanket on the grass in a grove of tress near the Mormon church. No significance there except for the free parking. We had such a great time. We ate the Easter dinner leftovers and fresh cheese and bread from the deli. After lunch we laid down and let the sun warm our faces. I felt so happy I could have burst. We laughed and it felt so good to be lying on a red and white picnic blanket on a warm April day with my husband. The bright sun gave it all a kind of dreamlike quality...or like a memory sequence in a movie. Where everything gets a little fuzzy and too perfect to be accurate. But it was accurate and everything was a little fuzzy and I loved it that way.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Like the Branch Davidians miss their David, so I miss Easter...

I actually missed Church this past weekend. Not because I suddenly started believing in God again but because I missed the rituals that made up such a large part of my Catholic youth. Easter consisted of more church than any other season and truth be told, I loved it. I was fervently religious as a child and I now realize that I was trying desperately to receive some kind of sign. When I kissed that old wooden cross at the front of the church on the "day Jesus died" I imagined as hard as I could what it must have been like to die under the hot sun and above the jeering crowds. I cried for Jesus and sent him messages of love and thanks with all my little heart. When it came time to have our feet washed I tried not to feel the tickle of the old priest's gnarly hands and imagined it was Jesus himself cleansing me of my sins. On Palm Sunday I waited anxiously for the part when the Holy water would be sprinkled across my row and felt renewed and freed as soon as the tiny droplets hit my skin. Easter was the greatest day of the year as I rejoiced that Jesus had risen and given me chocolate.

I actually thought about going to Sunday mass last week, just to relive it all again. To me this does nothing but illustrate the incredible power of ritual and tradition. There is a reason the Catholic church uses so many ritualistic elements in its services and why its been around so long...if you do anything for long enough its bound to seem normal. And not so completely crazy.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Life and Death and Rain

It's dark and raining this morning and it looks sort of foreboding and eerie outside. I love the means spring is coming and everything will be clean again...oh, and the smell. That fresh "good things are coming"'s enough to make me cry.

I experienced a runners high for the first time in my life last night. I've had friends who've told me about this phenomenon and claimed to have experienced it but I honestly didn't believe them. What I felt every time I went running was hot, sweaty, tired and in agony. Not exactly a high. But last night something happened. I don't know what cosmic circumstance aligned for it to happen but I know at one point I felt freed from my body like I was invincible and as light as a feather. I felt like I was floating and that I could run forever. It was awesome.

I've been thinking about death a lot lately. Now, I think about death a lot anyway but a few people I knew have died in the past several months and that has got me thinking. After millions of years of evolution you would think that humans would have come up with a way to deal with death better than we do. I find it a hard concept to get my head around. The idea that someone is there, with feelings, a smile and a history and then suddenly, they aren't. It doesn't seem to make any sense, even though I know it makes perfect sense. I heard Margaret Atwood say once that our ability to understand death is hampered by the English language. We think in a first person language that has past, present and future tenses. We struggle when we try to drop the subject or the future just doesn't work.

These thoughts of death haven't been sad so much as just considering it as my certain fate. I have always appreciated the small things in life and have made an effort to slow down and feel grateful for being alive. Lately I have been trying even harder to live life actively as opposed to by default. The TV has been put away for months now and neither Brian nor I has dragged it out. I have been running, breathing deeply and talking to friends a lot. I'm eating healthier than I ever have. I've started doing a lot of volunteering and getting involved in the community and it feels good. I feel alive. The way I figure it, if I've never really felt alive I won't be able to appreciate feeling dead.