Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” John 20:21-22 (NIV)
As we awaited the birth of our first child, husband and I attended Lamaze classes. He encouraged as I breathed and blew. We ended up not practicing what we had learned due to an unplanned last minute C-section. I never experienced what Bill Cosby describes as having someone pull your lip up over your head. But I still use the breathing techniques twenty three years later. Take today for instance.
Upon arising this morning, I went to the kitchen only to step into a pile of sand. My first thought was an angry one. The one who makes the messes never cleans them up, that task always falls to me. Breathe. Be grateful, the sand is the result of tracked in mud signifying a good morning rain. The drought is over. Breathe.
Race out of the driveway, late to an appointment. A neighbor’s dog has knocked over our garbage cans. Stop in the rain to pick up the trash. Breathe. In the garbage, I see remnants from a dinner party with friends. Good times. Breathe.
Arrive at Physical Therapy. My therapist tells me that soon she will be releasing me from her care. But, wait; I still have the muscle pain in my back and shoulders. It hurts. Sometimes, a lot. Will I never get better? Breathe. She reminds me that when I first came to her my hand and elbow were numb. I haven’t had the tingling in about six weeks. Progress has been made. Breathe.
At work, I frantically try to take care of last minute details before going on vacation next week. Youngest son who is feeling a little adrift now that school has ended is feeling quite needy. He calls me a lot. On my cell phone. At work. Another phone call interrupts my work. Husband tells me his cousin’s teenage son died last night in a car wreck. “It could have been our boy,” he sobs. Breathe. The phone calls mean our own son is alive and well.
More layoffs. Seven people this time. Three of them have more than thirty years with our office. Breathe. It wasn’t historical resources where the cuts were made. We are still okay for now.
The day continues in such fashion, and through it all, I continue to breathe. I breathe and in those breaths comes life and a reminder of what and Who is most important.
Lunch with a new friend, an amazing woman whose life has been so different from mine, but yet, so familiar. We exchange stories of children, family, travels, passions. We share a love for history, research and for writing. Again, she reminds me of what is really important, and I breathe deep of her wisdom. Returning to the office, my work gets done; I tell co workers good bye, run errands and come home. The sand is still on the floor where I left it this morning, but now the sun is shining. I feed the horses. And breathe.