a family walk

Bubbles in puddles mean rain for three days.

It’s day two.

The transplanted bushes and sod are greening. Roots are taking hold.

I never cared much for landscaping. And still don’t. But lately, I’ve found there’s a calming effect being so close to the ground, putting fingers into the earth.

But there was no yard work today. No fishing. No basketball with my son in the driveway or throwing the football to my daughter as she jumped on the trampoline.

After supper, the rain slowed just enough for a family walk.

Birds everywhere.

Robins yanking fat worms from the soil. Sparrows collecting string and grass for nests. A blackbird stabbing a small blue egg on the sidewalk. Doves watching the world, cooing from powerlines.

The kids don’t usually want to walk. I get it. He’s 14. She’s 10. They have more important things to do.

Play video games. Chat with friends. Zone out.

The deal is if they walk with us for two miles, they can bring their headphones and listen to music. They’re happy with this, for now. And it gives me and S.B. time to talk. Not about anything earth-shattering. Usually, it’s about work, our plans for the future, the kids. But it’s important for us. Even if we don’t say much. And especially if we have been out of touch. Busy doing what needs to be done to keep the wheels from falling off this middle-class bus.

There’s great intimacy in walking with your spouse.

Your partner.

Your friend.

Sharing footsteps, heartbeats, and breaths, as the sky grows dark and sprinkles turn to drops.

~ KJ


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