Peace Like A River

What a glorious couple of days these past few have been. Alison went out to Colorado to visit our new nephew, Colton, for a few days. This is not why the days have been glorious, of course. It's been the obvious missing joy. But it has meant that I've been hanging with the girls, not responding to emails or answering phone calls or staring at screens, just getting to relax(ish) and enjoy the time with my daughters.

I turned 31 yesterday. I made a few strips of Benton's bacon, had a heart attack, awoke from the coma and loaded the girls in the car to go eat Five Guys with Cason and his family.  My daughters are in love with their son Rowan.  He just started walking.  We talked about the Sixpence record he'd just been working on and ate burgers, while my children attempted to eat Rowan.  It was great.

The weather here has been awesome the past few days.  After the most snow I've seen in my 13 years in Nashville it's finally back to being Southern.  65 degrees and blue skies in February.  Sign me up.

The girls rode bikes/trikes and we went to the playground.  We absconded a little birthday cake left over from the surprise party we throw Paul Eckberg Wednesday night.  Finally, sugar-crazy and meat-hazy we settled in for the night, and after the girls were in bed I watched a little 'Lost', folded some laundry, and read Leif Enger's "Peace Like a River" until I fell asleep.

(Note to everyone: Read that book!)

Today was another gorgeous day.  We got home from lunch after church and were going to take naps, but the girls were immediately in the climbing tree as soon as the car had stopped.  They were having so much fun I just imagined up enough energy to give up my own nap (which I had been pretty excited about) and let them play.  I read on the porch in a rocking chair as the girls were laughing and doing something with their dolls and the swingset, I never figured out exactly what.

I couldn't help thinking that 12 1/2 years ago I rolled into this city in a tired old Mazda with two cheap guitars and a box of paperbacks, feeling quite utterly alone.  I got a speeding ticket that first night, in the rain.  I was lost.

And now, in this same city, which I have grown to love, I feel completely at home.  I have been given such wonderful family and friends.  Life, for all its pain and confusion, is sweet.  And in this moment I really sensed it.