Sunrise 7:23 am
My first sunrise outing away from home, which illustrated my ignorance of time patterns. I am a few hours west of my home town this morning, but I had no idea that the sunrise would be a full 10 minutes later after so short a distance. Damn. I could have slept an extra 10 minutes.
The Christmas vacation officially ends tomorrow morning. It has been a thought-provoking period for our household, as my husband and I discussed in the car on our way to visit his family and pick up our daughter. When all four kids were home over Christmas we were in a lovely yet occasionally unsettling state of togetherness. We all love each other, and love the idea of our family, both nuclear and extended. But each time that we return together, there is a reorganization of selves and relationships. No one is static in their lives away, or their lives at home, and we all reacquaint with each other's new selves each time we gather. At the same time, we are forever bound to earlier versions of our own and each other's selves. It is a delicate dance. Without sensitivity to, and respect for all of the complexities of growth and change, history, individual trials and explorations, and the intricacies of love and relationship, families can (and surely DO) malfunction. Family is, nonetheless, an institution worthy of the effort it requires.
A lovely and seemingly effortless groaning board of hearty soup, brown rice salad, fresh bread and holiday goodies was laid out at my in-laws last night. Cousins all around, three generations together. There it was again - that sense of timelessness juxtaposed with a sense of time sweeping away in a blink. Same group, same food, but how did that tumbling pack of two-footers turn into these towering, sentient beings around a poker table? And how did those young parents get so...middle-aged (especially that one in the mirror)?