Dear reader, this weekend I drove past my exit on the highway while thinking about my story.
That's not saying a lot, to be honest. I drive past my exits all the time.
But this time I was thinking about my story, lost in the exhilaration of seeing it in my mind, feeling as if I could run down a hill, arms outspread, and actually fly.
Instead, I was driving and missed my exit.
In the midst of all that I paused, realizing it is one thing to see the story unfold and quite another to make what I'm seeing clear to anyone else...that there is no world except for the one inside my head, and in order to convey any of it, I have to sew sailor suits for all twenty-six letters of the alphabet and take them out for a walk, arranging them over and over, in every possible configuration, so someone else may know about the trees and the lane and the girl with the crooked smile. Nothing, not even a teaspoon, will manifest itself without me telling it to do so. With my tumbling troupe of letters whom I beg, wheedle, and cajole, I must build this world in all its detail, word by solitary word.
I realize this would seem self evident, especially to someone who's already about 3/4 of the way through her story, but every once in awhile when my mind takes off running, it brings me up short to remember every cloud must be noted, every rainbow must be spelled out in terms of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. Otherwise, no one else will know they are there.
Sometimes it's tedious, sometimes daunting and draining.
Sometimes it is pure joy.
Sophie got home yesterday after having been gone all week to volleyball camp and then spending two days on a wilderness trek commemorating the experience of the early members of our church who crossed this country on foot, moving west, at great personal sacrifice and spiritual growth.
By the looks of this picture it would appear she did not suffer too much deprivation.
Izzy has been practicing up a storm lately. She will participate in a two week music camp which begins tomorrow and as part of this, we are hosting a 17 year old boy from out of town who plays the viola. They just spent the last hour listening to recordings of the pieces they will play.
Kids these days.
Caroline is just doing her thing. Over the weekend she got a chance to babysit my neighbor's grandchildren...it was her first babysitting job ever and she went into it like she was being recruited by a Fortune 500 company. She invited a friend to go with her and before they left I overheard them troubleshooting every possible scenario, nailing down the schedule, debating the merits of possible storybooks, wondering about snacks.
She came home ecstatic and in her way of never summarizing anything, climbed onto my bed and told me all about it.
This was taken while Izzy and Alex listened to the pieces they'll be learning for the next two weeks.
I'm pretty sure Marshall was listening, too.