A Prayer

The world is quiet, like a winter day when giant snowflakes fall one by one until everything is thick and round, telling us to stay home, go back to bed, play.

Every weekend now is a family weekend, every meal is a table set for seven, every night children are all safe in their beds.

Now is a time when it feels natural to write a letter by hand, to call a friend and talk long, to make rolls from flour and salt when the shelves are bare.

But how can I love this life when it’s covered with the blood of sacrifice?  How can I know this joy when it is lifted from the shoulders of misery?

I confess that I dread the glorious day when normal life opens up again.

When our calendar will be colonized like a strategy game being played by ourselves and others on the territory of our lives.

When I will once again take up battle with my princesses about what they are wearing, where they are going, and who they are with.

When I am alone in the crowd and feel like a girl in a rushing windstorm, trying to find my way home.

I am powerless to direct the evolution of the world. The only thing left to do is ask.

May this time change me. May it open me to suffering I have not let myself feel, to beauty I have not stopped long enough to see.

Show me how to sit in my own heart, so that when it is time, I may walk gently into this new world and not lose my way.