The Whistler's Dream

Everybody needs a dream...
Mine is to go to Oklahoma and play whistles for The Pioneer Woman. (Having been invited, not in a "creepy stalker" kind of way, for the record.) Heck, I'd play in a pup tent in the backyard for the joy of the cows and critters. What can I say? I'm a fan.
Everybody needs a dream...

Random Fluffy Foto!

Random Fluffy Foto!
Writing in bed, and Beka editing by ear. Really. The ear typed some letters. Really.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Realignment



In the course of listening through the Bible in a year, thanks to the Daily Audio Bible, one will come eventually to a romp through the book of Isaiah.

(Truthfully, we're nowhere near that book now... These writey-bloggy-thingies sometimes sit and bake for a month or two or six before they see the light of day...)

You know, I'm not sure if anybody has ever used the phrase "romping through the book of Isaiah." Most people wouldn't use the word "romp" to describe a trip through any book of the Bible.

(But, as all the world knows, I ain't "most people." Nor "some people." I are a "people," but that's about it.

"I yam what I yam and that's all that I yam." *toot toot*

Now hand me that can opener - I gots me some spinach to eat.)

So - romping through the Bible. Not usually thought of as a "romp."

Though... there IS the Song of Songs...

Never mind. Not gonna go there. Nope.

Anyway, some verses from Isaiah 30 caught my attention:

GOD, the Master, The Holy of Israel, has this solemn counsel: “Your salvation requires you to turn back to me and stop your silly efforts to save yourselves. Your strength will come from settling down in complete dependence on me— The very thing you've been unwilling to do.
Isaiah 30:15 (MSG)

Usually when something like this catches my attention, the Lord is having a word with me. In this instance, the phrases "turn back to Me," "settling down in complete dependence," and, the one that really hits me - "The very thing you've been unwilling to do."

Yeah... that. 

Ok - I'm finally getting the "settling down" part. I've learned that my life works a whole lot better at a slower, mindful pace. If I don't take the time to stop, to contemplate, to mindfully approach every day, then I get lost in many ways.

-But-

Settle down in complete dependence?

Nah - I'd rather squirm and cry and weep and moan and smack my hand against a wall - all of which are really, really bad for my emotional balance.

"A troubled mind and a doubter's heart.
You wonder how you ever got this far.
Just leave it to Me - I'll lead you home."
- Michael W. Smith

So, "settle down" = very good. "In complete dependence" = very good, though I'm not even close yet.

Settle down in complete dependence? I know that it's good - in fact, the best way to go about living... And yet, it's "the very thing I've been unwilling to do."

Yikes-a-roni.

How stubborn am I? How unwilling can I be? Read on, kids...

You've said, ‘Nothing doing! We'll rush off on horseback!' You'll rush off, all right! Just not far enough! You've said, ‘We'll ride off on fast horses!' Do you think your pursuers ride old nags? Think again: A thousand of you will scatter before one attacker. Before a mere five you'll all run off. There'll be nothing left of you— a flagpole on a hill with no flag, a signpost on a roadside with the sign torn off.”
Isaiah 30:16-17 (MSG)

Yup - very stubborn. Slow to learn, slow to listen, slow to trust.

What do you think of those last two pictures - "A flagpole on a hill with no flag, a signpost on a roadside with the sign torn off?"

Oi to da Vey...

What do I think of those last two pictures?

I don't like them. Not at all.

They scream futility to me - as the Teacher would put it, "a chasing of the wind." All of my running, all of my flailing, and all of my refusal to just settle down and depend is pointless, useless, and a waste. It leaves behind an empty flagpole and a signless sign.

If it ended here, if this were the last word, the door slamming, then hope would be gone, and I'd be lost.

-But-

As God, who is rich in love and mercy, does so often, He holds out hope. Emptiness doesn't have to be the final word...

Oh yes, people of Zion, citizens of Jerusalem, your time of tears is over. Cry for help and you'll find it's grace and more grace. The moment he hears, he'll answer. Just as the Master kept you alive during the hard times, he'll keep your teacher alive and present among you. Your teacher will be right there, local and on the job, urging you on whenever you wander left or right: “This is the right road. Walk down this road.” You'll scrap your expensive and fashionable god-images. You'll throw them in the trash as so much garbage, saying, “Good riddance!”
Isaiah 30:19-22 (MSG)

I probably should break those verses into chunks, to allow us all to take them in piece by piece... But I just can't. There's such a wall of amazing there that I just can't bring myself to split it up.

Tears are over, grace is abundant, and the Master is keeping us safe, guiding us and helping us - "Your teacher will be right there, local and on the job, urging you on whenever you wander left or right."

Awesome upon awesome upon awesome.

And, in a quote from a DC Talk song ("Jesus Is Still Alright"), "Now we come to the payoff." -

Our response to all of this...

In the light of all this wonder, we look at all the garbage we've surrounded ourselves with - all of our toys, doo-dads, stuff to impress, attitudes, assumptions - any and all of the crap we make into a cheap blanket fort, trying to keep the Master from getting too close.

Get the picture? No? Ok - work with me here, kids...

Imagine every little corner of your world - external AND internal - suddenly being thrown into the full and glorious light of God's reality, letting you see just exactly what you've accepted as "real" life... Take a look at all that refuse, see how small your reality is, and before the shock and shame can overwhelm you, know that the Master is already wiping away the tears of His little child and taking you into His arms.

And we respond in the only way possible when confronted with the loving, intimate presence of God our Father:

We immediately throw all our idols, all our junk, all our stuff that was trying to take His place (and failing miserably...) in the dumpster.

When the light of the Master fills your eyes, everything else can be seen for what it really is - trash. Nothing else compares. Absofragginlutely nothing.

"So let it go and turn it over to
The One who chose to give His life for you.
Just leave it to Me -
I'll lead you home."
- Michael w. Smith

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

I Wonder Why I Wander


Nomadic career path.

That's perhaps the most eloquent summary of my journey thus far.

It certainly beats the heck out of "Aimlessly searching for purpose," "Futilely looking for something he'll never find," or "Has no idea what he wants to be when he grows up, and shows no signs of ever growing up."

Yup - nomadic career path. Much nicer.

 Nobody likes to live an unsettled life... At least, nobody I know.

Ok - there are those who really like change, new challenges, new situations, and new cars. Or obscenely tum-tum upsetting roller coasters like my neffypooh, who really has issues.

Not so much the Calbert. Especially the roller coasters.

We (Most of us, many of us, some of us, the old personages among us - of whom I am chief...) like things familiar, comfortable, and sort-of-predictable. At least, as predictable as life gets for we humanpersons...

Which is pretty unpredictable, actually.

Maybe we like the predictable because it give us some reassurance that when things are unpredictable, there's some predictable to help calm down the unpredictable. Kind of like drinking milk after biting into some sort of mind-numbingly hot pepper, like the Ghost Pepper - reputedly the hottest pepper humanpersons can possibly endure, with a lot of agony. Or so I've heard - I wouldn't go near one of those boogers with a ten foot... um... something that's ten feet long.

Why someone would choose to consume something that turns your innards into a seething cauldron of pain remains a mystery I will never comprehend. *shudder* Yet one of my good friends chooses those incendiary culinary options on a regular basis. He bewilders me. I love him - but he bewilders me.

So predictable ain't bad, except for those who thrive on unpredictable, spontaneous, roller coasters, and Ghost Peppers. The Master have mercy on your amped-up souls, cast iron digestion, and burned-out taste buds.

Amen.

So - nomadic career path? Certainly something I wouldn't have chosen. Not really one of my aspirations for my future. Not really on any list of anything I would have checked a big ol' YES to.

And yet, my Father seems to take delight in making sure "predictable" isn't really part of my daily existence. For certain things, yeah - He gives me a few. Daily Audio Bible? Yup - part of my day. Eating, sleeping, etc. Yup - got those covered.

Sense of purpose? Of calling or passion or direction? Not so much.

Career? Goals? Upwardly mobile status? Nope.

Interests? Hobbies? Which musical instrument to play? Which instruments to not play?

Um...

Nomadic is more how I roll.

"I see me rollin', I hatin'..."

(Ok - hatin' might be too strong of a term, even if it is a song quote. But "strongly dislikin'" or "finding moderately objectionable" don't really flow. 

I didn't choose the thug life - the thug life chose me.

Right.)

And for the first time in my constantly wandering path, I may actually be close to somewhat of a revelation of a possibility of perhaps an understanding of why I wander...

Maybe.

I'm never supposed to look at the world the same way twice.

Huh? 

Yeah - that was my reaction too.

Let me put it this way - if you've read more than a couple of these meanderings known as The Whistler's Wonderings, (also known as the Fluffy Goodness...) you'll notice that I seem to have a unique view of the world, of faith, and of wonder.

There are other words one could use to describe it... like "skewed," "whacked," "semi-disturbing," or even "weird."

And no, I'm not offended by any of those. Truthfully, I think they all apply in some way or another.

Really.

Now, this may be a load of Calbert-flavored hooey... but in my slanted view of reality, (Oooh - "slanted." That's one I forgot...) this comes closer to helping me understand why I'm never allowed to "settle down" in one place than anything I've pondered my way through.

So here's the deal - Those few, short-lived times when I've had a regular job, I tend to settle into a routine, a groove...

A rut. I'm like a little wind-up toy on a track - wind me up, let me go, and I'll follow the track around, same direction, same steps, same same same.

A big ol' honkin' rut.

And I quickly lose sight of wonder, of beauty, of God's hand moving so gracefully in everything that passes through my day. I forget just how much I've been blessed, the gifts I've been given in all their diversity and wonder (and strangeness...), and I start seeing the world the same way, every day, same ol' same ol'...

And I'm not supposed to do that.

If the scenery never changes, I don't look at life from different angles, seeing different views of God at work in so many ways. If I'm buried deep in a rut, I never look around to consider how this thing of faith continues to work as everyday life, with all its challenges, doubts, and struggles.

If I get settled in one place, I don't see the wonder of God at work right here, right now. I lose the view of my Father's gentle hand, nudging me in so many different ways.

And I forget how much He loves it when I make refrigerator art for Him. In fact, I sometimes get so deep in a rut that I don't make art at all.

So, He keeps me moving, knowing all the while how uncomfortable it is.

He doesn't let me put down roots, even though He knows how much I long for some little space that I can call "mine," because He'd rather have me see all of creation as "His."

He keeps me unsettled, continuing my nomadic path, because if I don't wander, I lose sight of His wonder.

What He has given me is a purpose... a vision... a dream... (For the first time in my life, perhaps?)

I want to spend my time telling His stories, pointing to Him from all the different twists, turns, angles, and strange viewpoints that He leads me through.

I want to communicate His wonder, His mercy, His goodness, His grace... And show how He is so very active, so very involved in it all - right here, right now.

I have no idea what that vision will look like, or if it even is valid. I have no clue how it could become reality. I simply know that it is my passion - using all the diverse gifts that He's given me, from that unique viewpoint He's brought me to ("strange," "slanted," "unusual," "weird..."), and with all the childlike delight and wonder He's put in me.

I want to tell His story.

I want to share His wonder...

As I wander.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Mara ("Bitter")


A friend of mine was preaching a sermon from the book of Ruth, and asked her friends in the social-media-interweb-internet-thingies which character they identify with most from the book...

Now, being a guy of the manly male persuasion, my options are a little limited. After all, there's only one really manly man character in Ruth - that would be Boaz, the kinsman redeemer.

(Unless you want to be the dude who was more closely related, who had first right to buy the field, and take responsibility for Ruth, but decided that he didn't want to, so Boaz was able to buy the field and be the kinsman redeemer, and everybody lived happily ever after...)

(I really should have looked up his name, since that would have taken way less time than writing out that whole thingie above, but as all the world knows, that ain't how I roll...)

(HAH! I did look it up, and we don't even know his name! He's just called "the kinsman" or "the family redeemer." I RULE!!!)

(This time, anyway...)

So for a manly man of the male persuasion, there's Boaz. Or "Kinsman Redeemer #2" as they would put in the final credits.

But if I'm honest, I identify with Naomi.

Specifically, I identify with her when she says:

“Don't call me Naomi,” she told them. “Instead, call me Mara, for the Almighty has made life very bitter for me. I went away full, but the LORD has brought me home empty. Why should you call me Naomi when the LORD has caused me to suffer and the Almighty has sent such tragedy?”
Ruth 1:20-21 (NLT)

Mara - Bitter. 

Unfortunately, that's been me for a long time now. Perhaps far too long. And perhaps I've finally come along enough to look at it, write through it, and at least attempt to deal with it. At the very least, I'll have put a face on it. Sometimes, that's the toughest step.

It seems to me, in my limited but yet extensive career in Maraology, that when bitter invades our lives, we have some choices...

We can live in it, like Naomi "call me Mara" seems to be doing here. And perhaps we come to believe it defines us.

Who could blame you? I mean, look at Naomi - the circumstances, the losses, the pain, the frustration. "And the award for Best Mara in a Tragedy goes to..."

When someone we know is crying Mara, we can totally understand it. Usually. Sometimes. Maybe. But as time goes on, as they seem to live in it, we may find ourselves backing away, shaking our heads, or quietly muttering amongst ourselves.

We can defy it. We can get in people's faces, we can wear our Mara like a badge of honor, we can make the world rue the day it dumped in our Froot Loops, and we can take the posture of "Kickin' Mara and takin' names."

And, in our defiance, perhaps we're putting Mara on steroids. Marazilla. *Rowr*

When someone we know is defying Mara, we can totally understand it. Usually. Sometimes. Maybe. But as time goes on, as they wield Mara like a club, reducing all the world around them to rubble in their defiance, we may find ourselves backing away or quietly muttering amongst ourselves.

We can let it pass over us. And this would seem to be the "ding ding ding" moment - the right answer that makes you today's Mara champion. Let the bitter pass over, don't let it settle and grow roots, just let it go.

(The first one of you who begins humming "Let It Go" will be immediately escorted out by security. And by "Security," I of course mean Beka wielding the Tongue of Slobberyness and the Flashing Ninja Paws of Destiny. *shudder*)

But bitter seems to have a way of launching sneak attacks. Even when we think we've allowed it to pass over, to "flow like water" (to quote various martial arts teachers, including my Tai Chi teacher), it has a way of creeping up on us and playing Whack-A-*Calbert.* (Insert your name *here* - or don't if you prefer the mental image of Calbert being on the receiving end of the Whack-A. I'm here for your entertainment.)

So we may *say* that we let it go (Watch it - I'm still listening and Beka is standing by...), only to have Mara lurking in the background, waiting for the right moment to strike. And the only person we're fooling with our "it passed right over me" attitude is ourselves. Others see the totality of our world, and as time goes on, they may find themselves backing away or quietly muttering amongst themselves.

Disclaimer: I'm more than aware that each of these scenarios have been played out by various and sundry folks, who then managed to either work through it or embrace it, find grace, and move on. I'm just not among them. At least, not in this zip code.

*** time passes ***

Sometimes, I find myself writing through something like this, and I hit a wall - the words flow, then just stop, slamming up against a brick wall. There's no more to be said at that moment. And I shake my head at myself and wonder why that happens - I seem to be making progress through something, only to run into a wall just when I'm in the fast lane toward clarity...

Perhaps not clarity. That'd be giving Steve (the Mental Hamster) too much credit. And he's NOT fancy that way.

Anyway, I hit one of those walls at this point, packed up the ol' iPad, and headed off to other things, wondering where all this bitterness was going... And as usual, my Father had a destination in mind. He just wanted me to listen a little more carefully.

There is another option, and at first glance, it's going to seem like the worst one of all:

We can accept the bitter.

("WHAT???????")

Told ya.

If you feel your indignation rising within you, ready to heave forth a mighty torrent of contention, disagreement, or at least mega-trolling, pause thou thy poison pen (keyboard, etc.) and hear my tale, ye lords and ladies.

Acceptance is NOT surrender.

Acceptance is NOT apathy.

Acceptance is NOT weakness.

"Alright, writey-boye, get to what the hork it is, that I might load my catapults of refutation and lob stones at thy ramparts."

Wow - I seem to be stuck in medieval mode. Sorry.

Acceptance is a simple acknowledgement that we were hurt, regardless of how, why or by whomever or whatever. And that there are wounds and scars from the hurt. And that we don't have to live damaged, bleeding, and crying.

It can be all three at the same time...

We can live in it - and accept the fact that there are scars. Every time we see those scars, there's a reminder of pain and bitterness. It's a part of our history, thus it's a part of us. To refuse that is to try and perform plastic surgery on our own bodies - trying to excise the scars and make everything purty. Doesn't really work, and can go horribly wrong.

So we accept the scars, the pain, the hurt.

We can defy it - and accept the truth that there's no need to drag the bitterness around like a little kid with a wooden ducky toy trailing along behind them. Just because there's bitterness in our history doesn't mean it needs to be in our present. (And yes, I'm so tempted to go for various quotes from Kung Fu Panda 2, so save me the effort and just go watch it, ok?)

So we learn from it, and realize there's no honor in wearing a badge of Mara.

We can let it pass over us - and accept the fact that our hands aren't big enough to carry all that weight, all that bitterness, all those hurts and scars.

The hurt happened. The bitter came. And I'm not strong enough to deal with it all alone. So that's where I have to climb in my Father's lap, cry on His shoulder, get angry, scream a bit, and learn what His comfort feels like in this confused, broken world, to His confused, broken child.

Apologies if this sounds like the point where someone just threw in a pithy churchy God-thing at the end to make it a neat little devotional, but in my world, this is the only way to put Mara to rest.

It's the only reality that gives me any hope of moving away from Mara-ville into Calbert Acres.

Call me Mara? Sometimes.

But thanks to my Father's grace, Mara isn't forever.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

The 40 Year Long Way 'Round



I think I might start a series called "My Weekly Butt Kicking from Pastor Craig."


Nope - too wordy.

"Pastor Craig Kicks My Butt."

No - just doesn't seem right.

"Kickin' with Craig."

Aahhh - that's the ticket.

(If I was cool and hip and in the know, I'd put something like #kickinwithcraig, but I'm not, so I won't.

Although I might see if I can get my peeps from First Cov to use it. Hee hee hee...)

Let us proceed with the kickin'...

Craig has been working through a series in Exodus called "The Great Escape." (And you should really check it out... the link is right here, and you can find the whole series and more CraigAwesomeness at the First Cov website.) So on a Sunday past, we found ourselves headed out from Egypt, and smack dab at the Red Sea in a sermon titled "Freed To Follow."

We also found out that Craig has never seen "The Ten Commandments." Imagine - never seeing Charlton Heston saying "Let My People GO!" or Yul Brenner saying "Heck NO, NRA Boy!" or Edward G. Robinson being his usual gangster self, only in a tunic, sandals, and a head thingie.

Perish the thought. Craig got some watchin' to do.

Anyway, part one of the kickin' came in this little factoid:

If the Hebrews had went a direct route, they could have hit the Promised Land in just a few weeks.

-But-

God the Master knew that they weren't ready to deal with what that road would bring them, so He took them the long way 'round...

The 40 year long way 'round.

Wha??

Yeah. 40 years of mercy wrapped up in wandering, complaining, learning, and manna.

(Ba-MANNA BREAD!! Ah, Keith Green - we miss you!)

40 years teaching former slaves to be a free nation following God the Master.

Cal's takeaway kickin' from this: When God is refining us, training us, and shaping us, it'll take as long as it needs to take. Not a second more than necessary, but not a second before we're ready either.

Even if it takes 40 years...

Part two of the kickin' is...

God is NOT a travel agent. (I love this picture, Craig!) We don't come to Him, with our destination all picked out, all the things we'd like to see, and all the amenities we want included, so that He can make it all nice and smooth and hopefully cheap.

Rather...

He takes us along the route He decides, to the places He wants us to be. He makes the plan, not us.

I think of it this way: We are deployed. We're sent to where we're needed - either to be the agents of change for the Kingdom He needs us to be, or to places where our training continues.

We're sent - sometimes for short assignments, sometimes long. Sometimes relatively calm places, where we can rest and learn, and sometimes into the middle of conflict, where we face challenge and struggle on all sides.

For the record, this is the only reality that helps me make sense of my nomadic life path - never staying where I'd like to stay, never allowed to put down roots or feel like I'm in my "place." He keeps me moving, keeps me unsettled, and continues to deploy me where He wants me to go.

And, slowly, I'm finally accepting it. 

So far, it's been since 2006 - the 8 year (and counting) long way 'round. Truthfully, it's been much, much longer - the 32 year long way 'round since my best friend became my bride, and a longer long way 'round since leaving my home town and coming to Grand Rapids - I guess I'm really on the 55 year long way 'round, and there's no end in sight.

Which brings us to the third kickin'...

The cloud and the fire.

Every step of the 40 year long way 'round, God went before them.

Not behind, watching them hit struggle after struggle. Not above, sitting on a cloud in a long white robe watching the little ants go marching one by one...

But, before them.

Ahead of them.

Already knowing the way ahead, already knowing the challenges they would face, and already providing what they would need to keep going.

Oh, and hearing their muttering, complaining, and general crabbing all along the journey. Imagine a 40 year session of "Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet? AreWeThereYet?AreWeThereYet?AreWeThereYet?AreWeThereYet?AreWeThereYet?AreWeThereYet?AreWeThereYet?"

Every parent who read that just had a major shudder. I know you did.

"AreWeThereYet?HowAboutNow?WhatAboutNow?Now?Now?Now?Now?Now?Now?Now?Now?Now?Now?Now?"

Yeah. Whee.

Oh, and don't even get me started about the gold cow. Edward G., you're goin' DOWN...

(That won't make any sense to folks like Craig, who've committed the egregious sin of never having seen the movie. And yet, I still love you.)

God the Master plans the path we need. God the Master know just how long it will take to bring us through the lessons and assignments needed to have us end up just where He wants us.

And God the Master goes before us. Always.

Thanks, Lord. Message delivered by your servant Craig, and received by your kiddo Calbert.

#kickinwithcraig - a hashtag whose time has come.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Reconnection


One of the "gigs" I find myself in lately is working at the airport...

I pause to allow you, dear reader, to be a tiny bit envious. I don't blame you at all - Honestly, I do an internal happy dance every time I get to use the phrase, "I work at the airport."

**Woo hoo!!**

See? There I go again.

As someone who really does get geeked at the opportunity to hang around an airport, there are a number of sights that I don't think I'll ever grow tired of...

-- The glow of lights on the landing field - since I work nights, I get to see them every time I arrive.

-- Lights in the control tower as I walk toward the terminal. Again, I get to see them every night.

(I'd really really REALLY love to get into the tower sometime, but I don't think that'll ever happen - I don't even think the "I'm a newbie and got lost" excuse would work, let alone the "What do you mean this isn't the bathroom"? excuse. Either of those would probably lead to me getting an ever-so polite talking to by the fine and friendly folks in the blue uniforms with the shiny badges...

Ain't nobody got time for that.)

Back to the sights I see...

-- Looking at planes going up, coming down, and parking at the gates.

(Did I mention that I get geeked about being at airports? I did? Good...)

(I'm going to ask my boss if there's any chance I could also train to work on the ramp - I want to be one of the cool kids in the reflective vests with the magic glow sticks of authority that have the power to steer a big ol' plane nose onto a little mark on the concrete.

That'd be fun. Also might induce slight moisture in one's neither regions - this would, after all, be a big ol' plane nose, heading STRAIGHT FOR YOU. 

**Woo hoo!!**

But with great power comes great responsibility - no making the plane do donuts or something just to see if the crew would actually do it. Bad Calbert. Very VERY bad Calbert.

Besides, I think the pilots would just run my sorry hiney over, and rightfully so.)

(Did I mention that I get geeked about being at airports? I did? Oops - my bad.)

One more sight at the airport that I don't think I'll ever get tired of: Watching people. Watching passengers as they disembark - sure. Although at the hours I work, the look on their faces is usually something like, "FINALLY!!" It's still worth watching, but let's face it - by the time they pass by little ol' me, they're rung out and ready for their jammies.

But the folks I especially like to watch are the people who are waiting for someone to arrive. It's always changing, from men and women waiting to catch sight of their beloved coming around the curve of the exit, to groups of folks waiting for someone to return from far away. Sometimes they're a bit wrung out too, having been shoved into extra innings when the plane they're waiting for gets delayed for an hour... or two...

That all seems to melt away though, when whoever they're waiting for comes around the bend and into their line of sight.

(And don't even get me started about how teary I get when one of the amazing men or women of the armed forces comes home... *sniff sniff*)

They hold signs, they bring flowers, or they greet their loved one with the biggest hug imaginable. Children run to mom or dad, families wrap their arms around grandparents, and friends have long looks into each other's eyes as they measure the time since they last saw each other.

They reconnect.

And I ponder this:

When I'm apart from those I love, even for a short time, am I as overjoyed to see them as someone waiting for a passenger?

I often say, and yea verily I still say, that my beloved's smile lights up the room for me.

-But-

Do I remember to tell her that?

Or do I let the ho-hum routine of each day take that away from me? Do I fail to bask in the brightness of that smile, because the daily grind has ground me down?

Too often, all that passes between us when I see her is a simple "Hi." Then a "Hi" back. We get in the car, we drive home. We carry our stuff in from the car, the way we do almost every single day. We may chat a little, or talk about something we need to do. I might chatter about my day, or she might chatter about hers.

But, if I'm honest, far too often we don't reconnect - not like folks waiting at the airport. And I think I lose something along the way because I don't make the effort to show her my absolute joy at being with her once again.

So, am I the only one who might get ground down with the daily routine like this?

No?

I didn't think so - we all miss so many opportunities to reconnect.

There's another example of reconnecting in our own home - our beloved BekaV. And she never, ever gets bogged down in the daily grind. She doesn't even know what a "grind" is - all she knows is that she's a dog and she's totally geeked to be one.

(Did I mention that I get geeked about being at airports? Twice? Only twice? You got off easy...)

Every time we've been away and she's been in her pen, (It doesn't matter if it was an hour or all day...) she has her little ritual of reconnection... She comes out of the pen, usually to me first, and ducks her head, rubbing it along my legs, pressing into me with those ridonkulously strong legs hard enough to knock me over if I'm not careful. She wants me to touch her, to hug her and pet her.

Then she runs to my beloved for the same treatment.

Then back to me.

Then back to her.

Then back to me where I mention that she should go outside with momma, and she finally runs full-tilt to the door, where momma has been patiently waiting.

Now, if she didn't get enough affection, she'll sometimes run back to me for one more cuddle, and then I'll get her going toward the door. She finally goes out, and the ritual is completed.

- Except -

When she comes back in, she's not quite done with me. She'll run in, come find me, and do more head ducking until she's satisfied.

Thus endeth the ritual of reconnection. Amen. Woof woof.

So, let me add to my ponderable thingie:

When I'm apart from those I love, even for a short time, I should be as overjoyed to see them as someone waiting for a passenger coming in after a long flight.

OR as a certain fur-clad cuddleball, wanting to duck her head, get some lovin' and try to knock me over with her powerful legs.

Yeah. That.

So, the next time I've been away from my beloved, I'll run up to her, bump my head into her knees, and almost knock her over with my (not-so) powerful legs.

Wait - something about that doesn't seem right...