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Dec 18

Startled by Grace

To live
is so startling
it leaves
little time
for anything else.

—Emily Dickenson

Isn’t this how life feels?

So often I just feel startled. Like when I walk into book club and am bombarded with the news that an acquaintance has cancer. Then I’m hurtling back and stumbling forward. And eating way too much cheese fondue while I try to find my balance.

Then my teen startles me with her ease. How I tell her I ruined her favorite sweater and she replies, “That’s OK. It was nice while it lasted.”

How did I get this kid in my life?

Or I watch my almost 13-year-old slip on her sister’s bright red hoodie to wear to school. God, I’m flabbergasted by my great good fortune. All the troubles whirling in my head sway and stop. And I say, This. Take this in. The girl before you, calm and happy. We arrived here. Lucky. From hard work and attention, this girl stands before you blooming in her sister’s sweatshirt. All is well.

To live
is so startling
it leaves
little time
for anything else.

—Emily Dickenson

 

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