I bought a giant (8.5x11, for me that is giant - I've been on the 5x8 format since 1988, when I bought my first daytimer at Price Club on Security Blvd). Anyway, I bought this giant but otherwise not particularly distinguished datebook for 2009, because I need a lot of room to write because I need to keep track of basically everything on the earth - my schedule, work deadlines, availability of church volunteers, Eric's gigs, Eric's social life, Ian social life for crap's sake.
What about my social life? you may well ask. Well, it's in there too, though it does not require a lot of room to write.
Which is largely by my own choice. I like to work, I like to hang with my husband, I like to read, I like to cook. I even like spending time with my kid, (although jeez! He needs to back off a little! He's getting awfully possessive. Frankly, I could use some space in that relationship.) Socializing has fallen far, far to the bottom of the list. And I'm not aware of missing it, usually. (Unlike, say, the time alone to write/read/think, without which I become observably twitchy.)
But I suspect that I actually need it, on some unacknowledged level. At least something low-impact, like going to my knitting group occasionally, and chatting with people who do not know me well and do not expect anything from me. Just hanging out.
(Hmmm. Except the last time I went to knitting, which was MONTHS ago, I was outed as a religious professional and got into a huge deep spiraling conversation about death.)
(Except - I liked that. It was actually stimulating and there was good give and take, and I think I helped the person a little.)
All I can say is, the last third of 2008 has been doing its level best to KICK MY ASS, and I am still here,"... hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair (most of the time)...struck down, but not destroyed."
(I wasn't planning on quoting this next part, because I don't understand it - "We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body." I don't understand that intellectually - I couldn't put into my own words what point Paul was trying to make - but I kind of feel that sentence in my bones. It rings true on some non-rational level.)
Okay, here's where I go all Christian-y on you. Sorry, I know this will not mean anything to most people, even followers...but the end of that chapter (2nd corinthians, incidentally my favorite book, chapter 4) says something I hope I can come to believe:
So we're not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace. These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us. There's far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can't see now will last forever.