March brings out the existentialist in me…questions of belonging and purpose start to occupy me as I go about my movement of the day. My general rhythm of wake, nurse, play, go, feed, nurse, nap, chores, write, read, play, feed, bathe, nurse–a rhythm that is my son’s so also mine–begins to feel inadequate and the gray gloom of continuing winter weighs heavy on me.
In response to this, to this sense of heaviness, I’m starting to look around for those first buds of spring. The crocus and snowbells which are the first to pop through the thawed earth and the haze of the willow as the willow branches begin to yellow with new life. Yesterday I allowed the time for my curly headed wonder to poke about in puddles with a stick as he explored the textures and margins between winter and spring–first poking the snow, then the puddle, then the snow, then the puddle. He dipped leaves into each pooling sidewalk skin of snow melt and experimentally dipped fingers in and looked in wonder. Yes, even this mild winter has been a long one.
As I witness his learning, his growing and changing, I wonder how too I have grown and changed over these past two years. I wonder where the next steps will take me–and how I might best live into my callings as priest and parent. The supply gigs (Sunday subbing) are starting to trickle in for the spring and I eagerly wait for phone calls and e-mails asking for my help. It’s a delicate balance this parenting and priesting and, while my little is little, I know that his needs and the needs of my family are best served (for us) by having my time spent with him. But, I still long for the parish and for other ways to serve and I am exploring how I might best do both.
Yes, it is March, and I recognize this feeling…this malaise in search of spring. It’s a metaphorical and literal haze as I search for purpose (a purpose I already have in all reality). But, as an English Major I cannot resist linking to this awesome song from Avenue Q (cusses abound in this one…so if your kiddo is apt to start singing “f*ing purpose”–and if you don’t find that funny–you may want to watch this one on your own).