Sanctuary of the Ordinary

On our drive into work this morning, my husband expressed his new outlook on life: To take one day at a time… to embrace the joy of each day and understand its mission. It sounds so anti-climactic like that… so un-profound. But the truth is many live in the pain and glory of the past or in the fear or hope of tomorrow.

Often the present is missed or endured. 

Now I am sitting in the office at almost 6 PM. Our workday is over, mostly. I am just waiting on my husband to finish a meeting, and we can drive home together. I am thinking over the day. It was full– meetings, deadlines, problem solving. In many ways, typical. But sandwiched in between was a lot of relationship, conversation with co-workers and friends, laughter, linking arms for common goals and purposes, words of encouragment, lots of listening, and some good coffee…

The mission of this day was quite ordinary… just a work day. And because of that the joy of it was hidden in the mundane.

Although typical, it was a good day. A full day. I just don’t know why, but I love routine and the ordinary. The love the ordinary of each day! There is beauty in it, stability… sanctuary… When crisis hits, it is the normal that we long for… the day to day routine that keeps us going. And we would trade anything for the normal that we once regarded as pedestrian.

I take pleasure in simple things like a cup of coffee, clean sheets on the bed. a swept porch, a hard day’s work, even doing the same old tasks over and over. That is why when my family moved to Ukraine more than a decade ago it was so hard for me. Suddenly, I was stripped of all the simple things in life that brought me pleasure like a cup of coffee, clean sheets, etc. Hard to imagine, but even those basics were gone for a time, until we got our feet on the ground. But in time, the normal–as normal as life gets in the former Soviet Union–became cheery again for me.

I want it to be said about me at the end that I lived a life full of days… not years, but days… savoring the high, the low, the prosaic, embracing all of it, gleaning from all of it…

that I have found a sweet sanctuary in the ordinary passing of a day.

 


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