Keeping it Real
Saturday, someone pulled up next to me on the freeway in furious stop-and-go traffic on my way to my brother's house for Easter. They made the roll-down-your-window motion. You have no brake lights. I stopped at the nearest town. We checked the fuses, but it wasn't that simple. So, we dropped my car at the closed garage and navigated mass transit for 2 hours (!) in order to get a rental car at the airport (local rentals were all closed for the holiday/saturday/evening). I finally made it to my brother's place at 8:30 PM. I was not hit from behind by an SUV speeding around the corner only to meet my stopped and not-brake-lit car. I am very thankful that we were not injured. Bless the couple who took the time to tell us.
Saturday night after a 6 hour trip that should have been 2, I hung out with E, E2, my bro, his woman, and my niece. Adorable niece can say my name, sort of. She can say E's name better than she can say mine. She's wonderful, spoiled like the oldest grandchild that she is, attention hungry, and great. She woke up at 2 AM and, rubbing her eyes in that great way that kids can, and walked to the sliding glass door that separated us older kids from the house as we sat and told old stories about family. My sister-in-alomst-fact (not law, but close enough) effortlessly rose in mother-response and took her to bed. As she carried my niece away, my brother spoke his heartfelt expression of fatherhood aloud:
Sometimes, I just can't tell you how great it is. I can't explain it. A lot of times, she's crying and cranky and I'm like, "Come on, stop it, give me a break, do you really have to be like that?" But sometimes, she gets up and she rubs her eyes, and she's just so amazing. I love it. I can't explain it. It's just so great at those times.
That's all he said about that. But the emotion in his voice was humbling.
My sister didn't make it to Easter brunch. She pulled out of a gas station and into a car with an 80-year-old woman driving. Her car was out of commission. No one was hurt. Again, I was thankful.
My mother had an emotional moment while going through her jewelry with D, my bro's wife-like-baby-mama. Some of the things that my grandma left my mother have been in the family for ages and my mom doesn't wear them because they aren't her style. But she doesn't want to get rid of them either. Turns out, D is a jewelry artist and started jumping up and down and screaming at the sight of these old crystal necklaces. My mother gave them to her, crying happily at finally having a proper place to give them away and have some closure.
Today, I started to stress out about the work I need to do for moot court try-outs, the fact that there's only 14 days of class left, the amount of work I need to do to get my head around all of my subjects (particularly contracts) before finals, the stupid logistics of returning the rental car and getting my car back (assuming the repairs were easy to complete and I could afford them), and the reality that I didn't get a call-back for the trial team.
So, I went over to Salam's blog for a dose of reality. I highly recommend it if you are in need of one. If you don't need a reality check, I recommend it for the historical context, his great explanation of the Sunni-Shia religious past and present conflicts that arise therefrom is very educational.
[exhale] Well, that was a lot for one discussion, wasn't it?