Imagine you are looking down at yourself — if you can’t do this, imagine that you are looking at a mirror reflection of yourself.
This is an ancient practice that takes only a few seconds, and I do it, when Shiva Rae says so. I don’t know why this is an ancient sacred practice; although, I have my guesses.
The wind blew my neighbor’s long curly hair into flames as she was lighting luminaries for advent. Other than the horrible smell, she was fine. In my kitchen was the long lighter she needed to borrow, so in she came. My kitchen greeted her with a wide array of costumes all over the floor, cereal bowls from the morning breakfast, dead leaves that needed sweeping, laundry baskets in various stages of folding, and backpacks sprawled open with hand-outs waiting to be read and signed. How much will it stifle their innate creativity if I banish the entire lot of costumes into a box to the garage attic, just so I can have a day without a river of Batman, Robin, Buzz Lightyear and Woody flooding every hallway in the four floors we live in? The sleeves must be stuffed all the way inside the gloves, so that “everyone will think this is my real skin.”
I wasn’t ready for advent, with everything nice and tidy — it was five o’clock, and dinner was yet to be a twinkle in my eye. Here is the worn-out analogy of “not being ready” in the same way that there was “no room in the inn.” The luminaries, still in the back of my van, probably wouldn’t make an appearance on this special city night, especially planned to light the neighborhood in the glow that we know as advent. Instead of wrapping paper, the elementary school PTO sold luminaries to the community. As part of his math unit, my third-grade son’s class even went to the coordinator’s house to help measure and pour the sand.
I wish I could tell you that I lovingly embraced it all; knowing that the messes mean there are children in my home, the little patter of tiny feet, to be loved and lots of laughter. But I didn’t. I was frantically, inefficiently working to put my kitchen back together so that I could bask in the light of advent. But when my neighbor with the hair said, “It looks so great in here.” I looked at her in confusion. She went on, “It just looks so cozy — you just can’t see it”
Imagine you are looking down at yourself. If you can’t do this . . .