sunny spells, scattered showers

The drifts remained long enough to give us a rare realization of our "white Christmas" dreams, but now the rain has fallen on our snow-globe world to bring on the bleak midwinter. The presents are not surprises anymore, the candles have burned down, and the yard is a slough.

There is consolation in standing under the sapphire lid of night. I tilt my head back - back - back so far that none of the dead earth steals into my attention. If I stare intently enough, maybe my eyes will draw the hope out of the stars. Maybe time will stop for a little while, or better yet, turn back to the days before these tears and before the man in the wheelchair lost his vivacity.

They say that to be broken is to heal, to bear the cross is to win the crown. I didn't realize how long in coming the healing and the crown could be. I know the Child came to eradicate eternal scourging, but oh, we must still live this life. We must still bear the cross with no notion of how long the road will be. Journeys are pleasant when one's companions are familiar. When their personalities are known and loved, one has faith that whatever the road brings, all shall be well. This man is not who I know, though. Give my father back to me and I will gladly walk the roughest road. I will push the one who cannot walk and I will carry the things he cannot hold. But there are decades left and he is so altered in spirit. Can you not give him back to us? Not the body -- the body we can care for -- but the spirit, give it back, give it back. Why have you let it fall so far? I am not strong enough to pull it back up. I am not even strong enough to fully enjoy the sunny spells, for the showers are now too frequent to forget.

I know that the Child was born to be the answer to all these cries, and most days I can hear him. But today there is interference.


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