James gave me an olive tree for Christmas. A peace offering, maybe. Or an assurance that despite the wreck of a year that we’ve had, we can care for something together and watch it grow. Not that we are wanting for things to care for or togetherness. In a few days we’ll have ourselves a four-year-old. A month later, our baby will turn one. The tooth fairy placed a 50-cent piece underneath the pillow of our six-year-old last night, the second she’s received in less than a month.
With a tree, thank goodness, the stakes are quite low. Dare I say, it feels especially agreeable to care for a living thing that doesn’t hum or bounce or bellow or make any demands at all. A tree is a still and quiet charge that can be neglected most of the time and still turn out more or less okay.
I’ve been reluctant to write anything at all about the end of the last year and the start of this new one. There’s too much to say and I’m still so much fumbling around in the thick of it. But I revisited the piece that I wrote at this time last year and against all odds it gave me some measure of comfort. As prophesied, I have plodded along. I have walked on my knees. I did not know even a fraction of what was in store for me then and I have no more certainty about anything but the plodding now, but here I am. You, too.
With any luck, we’ll make our way through this year, watered, and fed, and cared for, bellowing, bouncing demands and all.
+ The sparkly prism was a gift from a longtime reader. It is delightful in every possible way.
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