Monday, December 26, 2011


I take Isabella out for her morning walk, my mind racing through the list of things I have to do before I even go to work: Finish the laundry, wash dishes, plan the week's breakfasts and lunches.  Then there are things for later, like deciding which bills to pay first.

It's the day after Christmas, and life goes on.

Whether we mean to or not, we all invest too much in this particular holiday.  We carry some ideal of what it should be, or memories of a perfect past that can never be recaptured, and on some level, there is always disappointment.  But that feeling of melancholy--is that the right word?--never fully kicks in until the day after.

That's when we shuffle back to work, or return the disappointing gifts, or otherwise realize that our dreams once again didn't quite come true.  Nice things happen, good things, yes, but that elusive magic we recall from childhood just never quite reappears.  And it will be a whole year before we can reach for it again.

Ah, but we become more aware of our own mortality with each passing year, and more aware, too, that the perfection we seek will never happen.  Things are put in better perspective, a hard-won wisdom that tells us that our dreams and disappointments are both equally fleeting.  Things don't mean what they once did because they simply can't, there's no time to dwell on what might have been or what once was.  Life goes on regardless.

Isabella picks up a scent and pulls on the leash.  For her, there is only here and now.  That should be enough for anyone.