Lately, I've been thinking a lot about the two weeks I spent in northern, northern Alaska; about 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle. A few years ago, I traveled there in February and it doesn't take a genius to guess that it was (fill-in-the-expletive) cold. Honestly though, as much as I didn't love wearing eight layers, walking like a penguin and eating seal meat, that entire visit gave me the gift of wonder again.
The kind of pure wonder I experienced as a kid.
The kind of wonder that can only come from
standing in the middle of the darkness
of the Arctic Circle
while staring at the Aurora Borealis
dance across the sky.
|image courtesy of weheartit|
I've been thinking about that wonder. Missing it.
Closing my eyes and remembering that night, in the snow, just a bit off the steps while my breath came out in short gasps, near the whale bone monuments... and the sky.
That divine, breathtaking sky.
Something about the memory alone has sparked wonder in me again.
So I've decided, this week, I'm going to let it seep back in. I'm stopping in my tracks and I'm looking around.
I want to be where I am. Not daydreaming about somewhere else.
I want to be with the people I'm with. Not updating my facebook while I share a seat and a shoulder with them.
I want to hear stories face to face. Whisper secrets to friends.
Let my heart swell a bit with love and joy.
Drink cheers to the coming New Year.
I really want to put cheesy 90's Christmas songs on repeat, and twirl around my apartment while Madeleine asks me when we're opening presents.
Let the lights twinkle late at night, curl up with a good book, and listen to Bing Crosby croon.
I want my social networks to collect a little dust while my face to face world brightens with cookies and anticipation.
It's the week of Christmas, and I'm feeling the coming hope. I sense the arrival is near.
I'm closing my eyes, stargazing, letting wonder fill my senses in the least obvious ways.
If I could give all of you a gift, I would. I'd wrap it up in brown paper and ship it off today.
But I can't.
Here's what I can do:
...wish you sweet moments with the ones you love, the perfect recipe, magical bliss, the unbelievable second that makes your heart dizzy with joy, the childlike glee to remind you that all is not lost.
...if I were standing next to you, I'd squeeze your hand and say, "Look around. Find the beauty." And when you furrowed your brow, I'd say, "Even your furrow is beautiful."
... and wonder. I pray you have one moment that takes your breath away and for once, you don't go running to find it.
I'm wishing you a very happy and merry Christmas! See you next week!