Go the extra mile. It's never crowded. ~Author Unknown
For someone who makes sure her schedule has plenty of downtime, Saturday was a rare exception. Not only was my day packed, but I traveled plenty of emotional miles. I awoke quite luxoriously (in otherwords, without my alarm clock) only to remember too soon that I needed to get going. After a long walk with the dogs in what appeared was going to be a gorgeous day, a quick pick up of the house and a couple of cups of coffee, it all began. They clouds turned dark and the sky opened up in a monsoon of torrent winds and pounding rain. An omen?
Not long after, my sister arrived with her husand and my 2 month old neice who were here from out of town for just a couple of hours. The purpose of their trip - to place their dog into the hearts and hands of a new family. As the rains flooded the streets and the storm flew in, they made the exchange quickly and arrived back at our house, soaked in tears. When their sorrow subsided a bit, we celebrated a long waited reunion with eachother as I held and pampered my plump little neice. They couldn't stay long but as I watched them drive away, it seemed like this moment in time had been a gift for my soul.
Before we knew it we were on the go again, this time headed for my other sister's house to celebrate my nephew's 15th birthday. As we drove onto the free way, the sun boldly pushed it's way through the gray creating the most beautifully intense double rainbow. The rainbow followed us for a while until I saw what it was telling me. There could be beauty even amongst storms.
At my sister's house, were my parents and my other sister. We celebrated this birthday with homemade chili, garlic bread and chocolate cake. I danced in a tiara with my neice, chased my nephews around the house, and coaxed the 15-year old into some camera shots with smiles. The house was crowded and the noise level was high. But every inch was filled with love and laughter. I relished in it.
When we arrived home, we had just begun to wind down when our evening company arrived, cousin Rae and her Peruvian love. We sat in the garage together around our new bar table amongst bottles of wine and beer, cigarettes, candles and music. We commiserated about life, laughed about our day, and ate lots of Tims jalepeno chips - all the while our dogs were chewing our couch pillows to shreds. Another celebration was in order, for Rae and Juan Carlos had announced their plans to marry eachother. Our fiesta turned to cheers of declared love.
As the evening wound down and our company departed, I sat relaxing in Warren's arms as we listened to a Bob CD as the storm outside continued. The rains would not cease today and I had no expectation anymore that they would. Today's weather was not an omen. Today's weather was a reflection of the day. As busy and as chaotic as it had been, the day was ultimately fulfilling. Every event today was a colorful mix of mournings, celebrations, miracles, and sacrifices. I easily gave every part of myself today, experienced a flood of emotions and I felt strangely at peace. I immersed my being into the lives of others and in doing so, my packed calendar was not so overbearing anymore. Yes, my downtime was at an all time low today, but the extra mile was worth everything.