There is no question, when I am spending the better part of a weekend with 30-something-year-old Lost Boys that my life is far from perfect. If I had a perfect life I would probably spend most weekends on white sandy beaches, sipping ice cold beer with lime and getting bi-daily massages by a cute cabana boy in flannel with a beard. But since my life is not perfect, I spend my days chasing down fourteen different occupations with an odd assortment of companions and miscreants.
I complain a lot, I know that. I complain about my bad (terrible, awful) back pain, my weight, my filthy disgusting house that is 1000% INFESTED with dog hair right now. I whine about my bills and the General Impossibility Of Success in my life. I moan and groan about being lonely and having no one to cuddle with that isn't comprised of 47% fur, 12% slobber and a lot of toenails (actually, minus the toenails, it doesn't sound half bad). I am the quintessential first-world whiner. I own it. I could write a book on the finer nuances of Appropriate Whining and how to be most successful at perpetual complaint. It would probably be a best seller. But every once in awhile, all of the good in my life implodes like a collapsing white dwarf - which is probably a terrible analogy since white dwarfs are probably stars that are forming and not collapsing, but I am not the family astronomer, so we'll go with it - and converges on me in an overwhelming wave of knowing just how lucky I am.
In spite of the dog hair. And the 11 year old who won't quit wearing the boot cast that When finally got to take off. In spite of the fact that I ran out of laundry detergent several days ago and am tottering precariously on the brink of underwear recycling after the four-way fire camp fashion. I am lucky even spite of the giant wad of blond, red, and black hair, and what is undeniably dachshund fur, that just fell out of my sacred and well hidden hairbrush. My fortune is not reversed by the indisputable smell of dog pee on a corner of the living room rug when I do my one yoga move a week. I am not rendered unlucky by the fact that we have gone through no less than 47 rolls of toilet paper in the last 12 days. My luck is fixed. It is unconditional and unchanging, because my good fortune is the people that I have in my life.
At this very minute, as I watch a dust bunny the size of a football blow serenely into the bathroom, I have one brother booking me a flight to visit my other two brothers and a sister-in-law that I am pretty sure aren't pretending to want me to come visit. My other sister in law is redesigning the blog layout that I gave up on weeks ago, because she "wants the experience." My close-to-home sister is making plans (I just know she is) to come visit and repair my broken sewing machine, hem the new jeans that I got for Natalee two months ago for her birthday, and help me design a bedroom remodel. My brother-in-law has become my personal gun-shopper, and my baby sister is getting ready to drive her brand new car over for a visit. I am loved. All the way around. I am known, and I am loved. My friend came for coffee yesterday and stayed for 8 hours. My other friend built me a shadow box to hold all of the precious ticket stubs I have saved diligently over the years of reckless concert going. My kids mostly did their chores tonight without very much complaint, and Taylor Swift was BLARING over the amp while banana bread that they made from scratch was cooling on the counter.
I got two stories done today, three yesterday, and still have three whole days to crank out the last few details. I limped my way to a parent meeting for softball that starts in less than a week, tomorrow it's a track meeting for my all-star hurdler, and Thursday we meet about our graduating seniors. I subbed in SPED today, had lunch with one of my besties and got almost all of the paperwork done that I needed to for another new job.
My life is full. It's rich. It's glorious. I have friends from shore to shore and curb to curb and couch to couch. I have family coming out my ears that I actually LIKE. I have dogs that I could honestly sit and just watch sleep, because they're that wrinkly and cute. I have a house that I love, in spite of the dog hair, and the destroyed couch, and the ruined rug, and in spite of the fact that I may not get to stay here forever like I planned, I am comfortable. I am safe. I am home. Every wall speaks my name and the names of my children and tells our story. Every scratch on every cupboard is another part of living that makes it real.
I love this place. My place. My people. It's not perfect, but it's mine, and it's good. I am thankful.