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[to my Bear]
We are often willing to take on Big Things. Unplanned changes. Cross-country moves (temporary or permanent). Enormous sacrifices. Reckless expenditures of money. Hours of volunteer time. Eternal devotion. There seems to be some sort of nobility in the superlative, the sort of thing that epics are made of. Especially when they're mingled with words like "never" and "always."
But what of the small, the ordinary, the thankless? Changes seen coming, discussed, debated, and argued over, and finally accepted as adequate only because nothing better presented itself. Short moves (my least favorite), convoying items a carload at a time. Quietly (or not so quietly) giving up some small thing that we think is an important part of Who We Are (when really it's just a toehold of selfishness). Going $20 over budget in one category because we failed to talk together before making purchases separately. Emptying the dishwasher... again. Choosing to love, and even to like, when one is being selfish just when the other felt entitled to their own selfish moment. And if one is willing when the other is not --- usually the Better is suppressed by the Worse, instead of the Worse being inspired by the Better.
There are songs and poems written about the Grand - maybe because it's more interesting to read, and maybe because the only word I can think of that rhymes with "laundry" is "quandary" and while appropriate, it doesn't quite the same ring as Emerson or Frost. We struggle to mix poetry in with the more prosaic aspects of life. But what if we did succeed in mingling the two?
What if we saw the poetry in mundane, daily conversation? What if we recognized the art of cleaning and cooking and just-making-it-through-another-day? What if we approached each and every moment with a song of gratitude on our lips, using "thank you" like teenagers use "like," but truly, deeply meaning it every time we said it? What if we signed each moment with I love you and sealed it with a kiss?
I think we'd be more willing - willing to overlook imperfections and failures and moments of selfishness, willing to extend to kind of grace that we'd like to receive, willing to love the unlovable (which is synonymous with "human," most of the time) --- and willing to walk many extra miles, because there's someone beside us to lean on.
What does the word "willing" invoke in you?