I have been feeling short of breath. I failed to give my wife an earnest deep breath when she asked and it was then that I realized that holding my breath has become my new resting state.
It's my cousin's last week in Vancouver. In the time he's spent with us, he's become a knitting buddy, closer friend, and a favourite of my littles. We are all going to miss him dearly but happily (and necessarily), we are cramming in some quality time with him, doing all the the fun things we can - amid all the Much.
Today we picked the boy up from school and then we chased the sunset to Iona Beach just in time to behold a dusk-lit horizon swathed in orange, mauve, and white.
I needed the ocean today.
I needed to run with the wind: with it, against it, beside it, with my the children and my cousin. Together we danced in defiance and in celebration of the power of the wind's whipping chill. We laughed. We giggled. We brrrd. We bent with the reeds and skipped with the grass. Then we fled the ocean front and made for the marshes where the wind punched less and we ran some more.
I needed a reminder that everything, our big move, the work, the mothering, my faults, our triumphs, the littlest most annoying things, other things - all of it: problems with solutions. There are indeed bigger wallops in the grand scheme of the universe and the fierce force of mother nature. We are all connected. Everything happens for a reason. I can only do what I can.
We only lasted 15 minutes. We were not dressed to break the wind or to brave the cold. So by the time twilight gave in to darkness, we were safely in our car, breathless and grateful.
I am still holding my breath but the wind, it's still in my hair and in my lungs.
3 more sleeps and then we move. I can't help but think that once we're home, once we claim our new space, that there will be three little birds at my new doorstep, singing of melodies pure and true. Or toddlers bickering. Either way, every little thing is going to be all right.
We breathe with relief now because we've heard from our families and although there has been some damage to their property, everyone we know and love in the Philippines seems to be safely social networking. I can't say the same for my paternal grandmother's Leyte home town. Please consider doing something to help the Philippines recover from Haiyan's rampage. Everything counts, even your prayers and happy thoughts.
A friend of ours out here is assembling boxes of gently used items to send out to those that have lost everything. So that's part of what we're doing, but we know that many organizations have committed to help. My aunt recommends donating through the Humanitarian Coalition of Canada because the Canadian government has committed to matching our contributions dollar for dollar.
I hope that all is well in your world.