June (already)

We were wandering down a lazy street in Louisville, remarking on how the sun still shone brightly at almost-9 pm, when Price said something that made me pause.  

"It's already June 13th, and so ... " 

I don't really remember what he said before or after, but instead I felt the tired weight of the last month-and-a-half in my steps.

"June 13th? No." 

And now it's the 18th, and somehow we can officially say we're closer to the end of June than the beginning. I can't begin to calendar out what the last 6 weeks have been, and more so the last 3 weekends which have taken us to a graduation, a wedding, and a funeral. Combined with the 3-dimensional reality that being back in my world, away from my home office and flung back into an old-life-loved-and-lived-again, I am feeling particularly human ... and so very, very tired.

If the graduation was for beer sneaked quietly after midnight - not for the graduate, of course, but rather small-batch bourbon barrel stouts enjoyed by his older siblings safe away from the watching eye of the eldest generation - then the wedding was for white wine, sipped and spilled with the dearest of friends, and the funeral was for Chilean carmenere downed in a dingy motel with stories and tears and the best attempts at disconnecting from the present reality. 

And this weekend was for a pause, for beers cracked open and watching the sun dip behind the Ohio River ... for t-shirts and no makeup and the kind of quiet, easy, comfortable love we dreamed of as high school girls. Gray sweatpants, no makeup? John Mayer was right.

It's all beautiful, this crazy hard life. I've misted more tears in the last month than I know what to do with - happy, sad, angry, empty, full. But there's beauty and grace in all of it - in watching with a fiercely protective heart a brother graduate, in witnessing a stunning covenant between two of our best friends- a marriage blanketed with all the hope and strength and prayer and humility it will need to survive in this world East of Eden - and perhaps the most beautiful of all has been the grief ... the sweetest remnants of a life well lived and the impact its loss has on all who loved her. What a testament it is to a woman who was strong as iron and soft as silk, with a voice that rang out with roses and the scent of south Georgia society. Grief is hard, ugly, and not meant to be part of our story. But grief means something exceptionally beautiful is gone, and oh how our hearts can rejoice in having known her, and having been known and loved and doted upon by her.  I believe a heart filled with grief is the best possible one with which to say good-bye.

There is no real theme to tonight's story ... the first in weeks, I'm afraid. My words are rusty, but I need to write them.

So here's to a new summer of words and capturing the beauty of this sweet season. It's a special one - I can feel it down into my bones.