Monday, June 7, 2010

A Lesson In Flexibility

We went to bed last night dreaming of spending the afternoon at the pool today. We all find a lot of pleasure in being at the pool while "everyone else" is still in school. It's only for a week or so that we get to play hooky like this but it's worth every moment. Unfortunately, it hasn't happened yet this spring.

After a last look at the stars popping out from behind the trees outside my bathroom window, I went to sleep last night dreaming of my first dip in the pool this year. I woke up this morning to pouring rain.

In this desert oasis in which we live, we have had the most wet and unpredictably gloomy spring I can yet remember. Yesterday it rained off and on all day. I decided to approach this weather differently yesterday: for the first time since I've been able to hang out my laundry this season I didn't lament the fact that I'd have to use my drier. "What the heck," I figured, "be grateful to have the drier since I have tons of dirty laundry that has to be dealt with." I went about the day, turning out basket after basket of clean, dry clothes, happy to just watch the sun come out, then the rain fall, in an endless back-and-forth. We had a brief break in the weather in which we scrambled to get suited up and headed to the pool. Samuel and Grace played with their friends for about thirty minutes before Grace--usually so hardy--crawled out of the pool, goose-pimply and dripping wet.

The gray clouds and intermittent rain cleared away again just in time to enjoy our dinner outside on the deck. We sat around the table laughing at the chicken antics (the girls love to come out in the evening), gazing at the big fluffy white clouds patched against the brightest of blue. Plans hatched for swimming on Monday, spirits lifted at the hope that we were finally going to get our "normal" weather back this week.

I said goodnight to the stars outside my bathroom window and crawled in bed, window open to let in the cooling air.

This morning, it poured again. "Okay, let's be flexible. I'll read a bunch of our book to the kids, The Captive, by Scott O'Dell. Do a little math, bake some bread, maybe even some cookies. Heck, make it a cozy inside-the-house Monday." Flexible, right?

And now, as I finish up this post, the sun has burst out again, lighting up the sparkling green of the grass, touching the tops of our backyard trees, sending the birds into paroxysms of morning song.

It's a perfect lesson in flexibility. No point in resisting the arrival of rain, or even (someday) the oppressive heat that is sure to come, eventually. It all happens and all we can do is adapt and live the day the best we can. Bring out the rain coats, or the swimsuits, or neither, but do it gracefully and without complaint, for the weather is going to happen whether I resist it or not.

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