It's a mixed bag, alright. One day you get dumped on, and the next your head is in the clouds. Reality goes from mundane to macabre to sublime in the blink of an eye, and still... we just keep on with it. That's life.
Nothing is static. Change is inevitable.
I lead a fairly ordinary life and so, I imagine, do most of you. Days drag on in dull sameness until the occasional blip to remind us that there is more to it than that. We have good days and bad, but most are a muddle of both. For example in the last two weeks I have gotten - and gotten over- a wicked cold, nervously anticipated and enjoyed a visitor from Japan, experienced moments of stress and immense pride as my daughter declaimed poetry on public television, braved a blizzard to help my husband with our broken plow truck --- and rejoiced the next day when he was actually able to resurrect it! I've shoveled the weight of that truck in snow, experienced a power outage, sang for a friend in critical care... and last night learned of his passing. Today I will finish cleaning my house and making brownies to welcome a second round of Japanese visitors, while mulling the music for my friend's funeral. Another ordinary day.
What keeps us going - what drives us to look toward tomorrow?
What makes life worth living despite its ups and downs?
I can't answer that for you, but for me it is hope. Hope that I will see another glorious sunset, hear another moving sonata, read another masterfully written novel. Hope that even though I cannot commit to the time and monetary investment of her joining the lacrosse team, I will get to revel in my youngest daughter's role as a fairy/pirate in her upcoming school play, and that my teenager will get into the college of her choice with enough financial aid to make her attendance possible. Hope that my worries for my adult children will be unfounded, and my dreams of a sustainable writing career for myself will come to fruition. Hope that whatever is around the corner will be a blessing, even if it's wearing a mask and holding a gun to my head.
"I have learned it is all in how you look at things."
Will I be disappointed? Maybe. But living without hope is an even bigger disappointment, one that keeps repeating itself, like a broken record of bad karma for the brain. Believing tomorrow will bring nothing but rain clouds blinds us to rainbows.
Today and always, I have hope that there is more to life than what we're living now, that it keeps going on, even after we're gone. I hope that for my friend who just died, for myself, and for you, too.
And, I hope you see the rainbows along the way.