multiplication

Though I keep strands of twinkle lights around the house throughout the year, they’re abundant now in this spirited December season.  On the piano and mantel, along the banister, outlining bedroom doors, around the kitchen window, along the porch railing, on the Christmas tree.  One morning, with trees coated in ice and cold rain falling, I write at the dining room table and catch the reflection of twinkle lights in the window, lights (and joy) multiplied.

I guide students through a week of writing lists, inviting them to slow down, to be playful, to be thoughtful; it’s so much more than lists.  I guide another set of students through an hour of restorative yoga, inviting them to slow down, to rest, to let go of thinking; it’s so much more than bolsters and blankets.  I teach, I guide, I instruct, sure, but also and especially, I hold space.  Over the years, I learn that this is no small matter, connection multiplied.

She gifts me a piece of her artwork.  I want to pay, she wants to send it freely.  It’d be so easy to insist, to dive into an awkward back and forth.  Then I remember times I’ve gifted freely in a similar manner, have wanted nothing in return, have only wanted to share my love – here’s something for you, here’s a little piece of my heart – and so I catch myself.  Instead of insisting, I open to receiving.  I think it’s easy to receive, except for when it’s not.  I’m lucky to have a friend like her who is gentle and generous and patient, in whose company love is multiplied.  

There are extra cups of tea – black, green, herbal – hands cupping the warm mug with swirling steam, with enticing aroma.  It’s such a simple comfort, ritual and pause and sometimes-motivator.  As I steep another cup of tea, I look across the street to the geese picking through ice-coated grass, looking for something to eat.  I expect the pickings are slim though their persistence must be paying off, they’ve been there awhile.  Every now and then, one of them flaps its wings and I wonder if this is some signal to the others hey, I just had the juiciest root EVER!  Even on a cold, icy December morning sustenance found, joy multiplied.

Christmas isn’t a season.  It’s a feeling.
~ Edna Ferber ~

Listen to Michelle read the piece…

6 thoughts on “multiplication

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