Magnolias remind me powerfully of college, and of this particularly, wonder-full time of year
I write often about wonder here (I think wonder is one of the most-often used words in blog post titles of mine, and probably in the text of posts, too). It’s true that I feel awe and amazement on a regular basis, and that’s exactly how I want to experience the world. It’s not all good, of course: for example I feel nothing short of abject awe at how lousy vertigo feels. I’m writing this on day seven and I still feel shaky, nauseous, and flat-out terrible. I don’t even want to go on my kids’ favorite ride at Canobie Lake Park, the Turkish Twist, for two minutes. I’ve been trapped on it for a week now. This is terrible. And in the true meaning of the word, awe-some.
A lot of the wonder I feel is good, though, and as I walked to do an errand last week (bobbing around on the sidewalk, because I still struggle to walk in a completely straight line), I looked up and noticed that during one of my days in bed the world had burst into insistent, almost ferocious spring bloom. That this fact continues to amaze me, even in my fortieth year, makes me very glad. I started thinking about the things that I hope always make me feel wonder. I don’t ever want to be cynical, or jaded, or to take this world’s breathtaking beauty for granted.
I so many ways, spring is the season of amazement. I hope I always feel a surge of surprised delight when I notice that the trees around me are jubilantly blooming, that the air has a new, softer texture to it, that the days suddenly seem long. Like so many things in life, spring arrives very gradually and then, overnight.
So one thing I always hope to feel wonder at is the advent of spring. There are others, though:
Internet access in an airplane. In fact, airplanes in general. I hope I always feel wonder at how it is that this enormous metal tube is flying thousands of miles above the earth, and that I’m tweeting a I sit there. It’s downright incredible.
The speed of time’s passage. Specifically, right now, that Grace is graduating from sixth grade. I swear, I swear, it was just moments ago that my friends – some of whom I’m grateful to still call my friends – and I stood in that same gym, singing our class song, The Greatest Love of All, before exploding into summer, energy and enthusiasm and hormones all coming together into a tidal surge.
Dawn breaking across the sky and the gloaming before sunset. The fact that we get to witness these majestic moments, every single day (well, most, of it’s not raining), takes my breath away. Every day.
Organ transplantation. It’s not a secret that this is a cause near to me, and when I stop and think about the notion that another person’s heart (and another, different person’s kidney) beats in the chest of someone I love dearly I can’t even process it. The wonder is extreme. It boggles the mind. I hope transplantation becomes more common – please tell your next of kin of your desire to be a donor – but I hope it never ceases to amaze me. Because it is truly extraordinary.
What amazes you? What do you hope to always feel awe about?