end of days

Yesterday was good.

I hesitate to even say that out loud, because I don't ever really get to the end of the day and declare the day a good one or a bad... they're all just-days these days.

They happen. The hours tick on, and eventually they end. As long as the end comes, I sigh with relief and eventually crawl into bed, already thinking about the end of the next one.

But yesterday?
Something about  yesterday was good. 


The boys and I climbed into my bed when the sun was still out...
They gathered books, and toys, and iPhones.  
We stayed there until after it was dark and no one even noticed that the moon was out, that the kids across the street had long been quiet...

The day had ended unnoticed.

We lingered there for longer, and sleepy boys eventually got tucked into their own beds.

We read one more book.

And I stood there, in their doorway, wondering how many days I've ended before they were done...


pack it all in...


I've let the clothes pile up on my bed.

The washer broke three weeks ago. A valve busted one morning in the cold; the boys and I came home from a grabbing a fast food breakfast to water running all over the car port...
So I haul clothes to my mom's and she washes them while I'm at work.
I haul them home and they just sit there- on my bed...
because I'm too tired to think about putting them away...

I've been sleeping on the couch,

It's like deployment mode-
except he's not in harms way,
he doesn't put on a uniform,
he doesn't have a pillow on my bed
and I'm not holding on to a dirty shirt because it smells like him...

and he's not my husband anymore....

The new valve for the washer is still in the box. One of these days, I'll find a screwdriver and replace it.
maybe not.
Empty boxes are piled in the corner. We're moving out, did you know? I don't know exactly when I'll pack; just that it has to be done before April One.
I'm sad to be giving up our rental house. It's been such a good, good house.
But money is tight and it'll only get tighter, and for a while,
I think I need a little breathing room...

Back to my parents' house, we go...

It's tax season, and work is crazy.
There's a wedding in April and my bridesmaid dress doesn't zip and tomorrow,
I'll toss all the candy out of my office, and make time to run--
because in two months,
I have to walk down the aisle in a pretty dress and put on a smile and
stand with a dear family friend as she promises to love this man for the rest of her life...

I don't know what happens from here...

The boys aren't playing baseball. and my parents bought a camper last fall.
We should be out camping somewhere on the weekends, but it seems
like there isn't any time for that.
Storms come through tonight, and @Spann says there could be tornadoes.
Austin wants to know where our safe place is and how are we supposed to watch the weather
when our tv is broken...

Sigh. Our tv isn't broken, child.

We just don't have cable.
Friends are going out to eat tonight and I could go and I could take the boys but
there's all these other things that need to be done, and so I turn them down, and
I say another time, for the thousandth time.

There are some days, I dream of packing it all up and cramming it all in,
leaving a trail of forgotten things behind...
And some days, I realize... I'm already doing that...



The cursor just blinks there.

And the words never seem to leave my head. |




January 28, 2014, 11 A.M.

I told my dad today that I knew how to drive in the snow, that I lived on a mountain in Germany for 5 years and could hold my own through a slide.

Southerners do not know how to drive in the snow, because it doesn't snow here. Southerners don't have salt trucks, snow blowers, or snow shovels, because it doesn't snow here. Southerners, also, just really like to be at home... after making a milk and bread run. So when the roads start to look a little icy, and schools start to think about closing, and the snow keeps falling... our first thought is to get! to! WalMart! and back! home! before the first and usually only flake falls; our second is to get! the! kids! from! school! first! because it's rare that school is in session when there's a threat of snow. Southerners close schools, because it doesn't snow here and we don't have salt trucks, snow blowers, or snow shovels.

That's what happened today...

In a matter of an hour or two, offices closed and schools closed and the entire city of Birmingham decided they'd flood the snowy, icy roads with cars...

And... Gridlock.

It was no one's fault. It wasn't predicted correctly- the storm came much further north than anticipated. By the time the snow started falling, it was too late. The ground was cold. It was going to stick. People made decisions as best they could... It was what it was, at that point.

No one had a chance to make a milk and bread run... Except for those who are actually spending the night in the grocery stores and super stores!

A coworker left out one end of our parking lot, and an hour and a half later, she came walking back in... She'd driven maybe 100 yards to the other end of the parking in that time, and decided it'd be best to come back to work.

As I type this, I'm still at work. At 0030. 
(And apparently the landlines at work turn off midnight... who knew?)

Turns out, the best thing I learned in Germany about driving in the snow... is to not drive in the snow.
We walked to Target- bought food and pillows and comfortable clothes. We played card games and dice games until we all realized it was past our *yawn* bedtimes...

My boys are safe at my parents' house, in cozy beds... thrilled to have gotten more than a dusting of snow.
They thought all of this was just an exciting adventure!

Kids are stuck at schools overnight. Parents are trapped in cars, wishing they could get to their kids. The interstates are still full of thousands of people who just can't go any further until the road conditions get better. Warming stations and shelters are popping up all over the city; hotels are booked with people camped in the lobbies. Strangers are opening their homes and riding around on 4-wheelers trying to get people to a warm, dry, and safe place.

I don't really know what to say to wrap all of this up...

Other than, strangers aren't always the scary people we teach our kids to avoid. There are kind, loving souls out there willing to lend a hand to a neighbor-- even if that neighbor happens to be in the stranded car next to them on the interstate on a snowy day in Alabama...

I pray everyone has found a warm place to stay for the night. I pray your kids think that staying overnight at school is an exciting adventure. I pray that if you're still out there, braving the roads to get home to your loved ones, that there's a warm bed waiting for you.

Also? I pray there's a freakin' hot cup of coffee waiting for us all in the morning when the sun comes up...

And an open gas station, because my car is on E.

Sleep well, Alabama.


like an old worn hoodie...

Happiness seems out of reach most days.
But some days, the sadness falls behind and hides itself  there in the corner in a box and I laugh without thinking; I smile at the noise and I find myself living and breathing and running again...
The curtains are open and the breeze flows through. 
We shed the layers and soak the sun up through exposed skin.

Then at the end of the day when the sky grows dark, I'm reminded of that box full of sadness... 
I draw the curtains when the house grows still and I unpack it, sort through it, soaking it with tears-- 
and I toss some of it in the trash, I pack some of it away, 
and I pull the rest of it over my shoulders like that old worn hoodie I love so much...