There are some moments in the day when you feel a sense of contentment and an overall good feeling. To me, one such trivial (non-trivial personally) moment each day is when I make both kids take their afternoon nap and run downstairs and make tea for myself. I come back to the study (these days KB sleeps in the study on the pull out Elmo couch) and take that first sip of hot tea as I begin to check my mail and then read a few blog posts before either child wakes up from his/her usual restlessness. That moment is one of satisfaction – at having completed the duties of that day so far, a load off the back that once the nap time is done, the rest of the day should be more easy and manageable. It is a moment of pleasure – to have the luxury of time, however little, to sit in the company of your children, yet have that moment to yourself…to feel connected to friends through email…to be able to enjoy reading something well written (when I read some blog posts) while sipping a cup of hot tea….to sit in a warm and cozy room on a cold day….it just feels good overall. I feel that same joy multiplied every night when I go to bed (usually the last person to do so) and feel connected in that physical space – the four of us, together, feeling warm and resting for the night. I never linger much on that thought – I just immediately thank the creator for that feeling…for that blessing.
Yesterday, as I sat down to have my tea, I was reading an article in National Geographic on the migration of illegal immigrants from Central America to Mexico and then to the United States. I quote here a part of that essay:
“Before the Lópezes left Managua, they had heard the counsel repeated now in certain poor neighborhoods of Central America: If you are leaving for El Norte, find Padre Flor Maria Rigoni in the city of Tapachula, 20 miles north of the border, because the first dangerous crossing you will make is not the one that takes you into the United States. It is at the southern Mexican border where the perils begin—the thugs, the drug runners, the extortionists in official uniforms, the police and migration agents who pack undocumented migrants into detention facilities before forcing them onto buses to be deported. The Tapachula migration station was recently rebuilt, to hold 960 migrants and process them more quickly; the southward-bound buses roll out every morning before dawn.
The Lópezes rode for hours in the 90-degree heat, Jessenia standing on blocks attached to both sides of the bicycle’s rear wheel. She carried her shopping bag in the crook of her arm and kept her hands on Armando’s shoulders as he pedaled, avoiding migration checkpoints by veering at intervals off the pavement and onto dirt paths. They had remarkably good luck. No one assaulted them with machetes or rifles or handmade pistols fashioned from PVC pipes stuffed with gunpowder; no one beat Armando and dragged Jessenia into the weeds; no one forced them to undress so that their body cavities and secret sewn-in clothing pockets could be examined for hidden money. No passing taxi driver decided to collect a payoff that day by alerting muggers or immigration officials that a vulnerable-looking couple was approaching on the road.”
I read such stories and I wonder about them later. Did they make it to the USA? Did they manage to get their two-year old child to join them? As I sit down and feel that opposing force pulling me to complain about all that I don’t have – I ponder about such people who have to toil and risk their lives in the hope of a better life for their children. I have to remind myself constantly that I am blessed in many ways. I am grateful for everything, from the most trivial like my hot tea to the bigger blessings – my children, my husband and family. I shudder to think of this balance in my life being disturbed in anyway. If I put myself in the shoes of the people mentioned in this article, I feel a shiver run down my spine. There are people suffering far worse and there are people who cruise through life without any problems what so ever. We will never figure out the rhythm to the dance of destiny and why people go through what they go through. The only thing I can do is to acknowledge all the blessings I have, and in some sense a lot of the people around me have. I can only wish for life to be good to those who have been very unfortunate in many ways and pray for them. It is this train of thought that made me pass on the blessings to the many unknown people I read about and wish for them a better life….and to all of you who do happen to read this post.
P.S - Lavs, this is in response to your "Blessings" tag by the way. Thanks again!