yesterday was the day. or, it was supposed to be. they were coming, the nice retired couple who had walked through my bedroom, who had seen my row of skirts hanging from a wide wooden dowel in my closet. they wanted to talk about how deep our well is, how much money we pay for electricity in january.
one o’clock came, the children were shooed outside, we were ready. & then. . . nothing. no nice retirement car pulling onto the end of our asphalt driveway. we called, trying not to be pushy but yet. . . how long until a perfectly coiffed house is blown to the wind under the tutelage of a two-year-old? really.
turns out the nice retired couple had car trouble. they were at the toyota dealership.
they would get back to us.
“we’ll get back to you” is an odd place to live. our entire world is suspended with this small pledge, breathed out without a second thought to the bearers’ mental state. with that single phrase, we are everywhere at once: scouring craigslist & zillo for house & land, sizing up andy’s t-shirt equipment to see if it would fit it in x-square feet, thawing out the last chicken for dinner tomorrow. & with that same phrase, we are nowhere: boy, they hated it. our house is too “cabiny” (actual quote). maybe we should have hacked out that huge juniper in the middle of the yard to make more lawn. we should have, should have, should have.
truly, an exercise in skin-thickening.
to say nothing of what perpectual show mode does for the psyche. our house isn’t perfect for most people walking across the wood floors andy tapped down himself. of course it isn’t. most people aren’t us. & those most-people don’t mind telling us they don’t care for the toilet seats or the blue paint in the bathroom. entry to a house-for-sale hands out clipboard & score sheet & giant red pen. it’s like holding yourself out on a glass slide under a microscope for ever & ever.
what i’ve noticed about this constant state of limbo is that i can’t live any more than this one single day, really. when i don’t know if we’ll be here next month, i can’t hammer down the squares of my calendar. i have to stay loose. like a boxer. i can cast gentle nets into tomorrow, but there’ll be no sharp tugging to secure anything for sure one hundred & ten percent.
which is really how we ought to live anyway, isn’t it? i mean, how many hours, days, would i gladly take back that i’ve frittered away in obsessive planning or rearranging, trying to eek out an agenda i approve of instead of trusting what comes to me is what i need.
all i have, all i’m a hundred percent on is just today. like my kids. tomorrow is javin’s birthday, the big 11, & he’s leaving all the planning to me. he hasn’t even put in a request unless i’ve asked it of him. dessert, honey? cheesecake. plans? he doesn’t even care. he knows it’s going to be good, that we’ll take care of it. we love him, that’s what we do.
he rests in that.
so, i’m putting a bead on javin. i have today. tomorrow? that nice retired couple might come back, or it might be somebody else who will love my toilet seats & light blue bathroom. but if it isn’t? & if they don’t?
You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You. –isaiah 26:3.