Then, confident and free-spirited, he took off, mopping like a ballroom dancer or an Olympic figure skater with a prop. He had the time of his life out there. Gabe finally had his hands on a mop.
That kind of joy should be bottled.
It really should, shouldn't it? Why is it that we lose our excitement for little things like this? Is it something we have to lose when we grow tall and burdened? Heaven knows, with the trials that weigh down us grown-ups, we need the joy more than than the children do. But where does it go? Does it dissipate with our childish innocence? Does it have to be lost forever, replaced with our maturity and knowlege?
Don't get me wrong, I'm not depressed or feeling low or anything. I consider myself a generally happy person, in fact. My life is perty darn good. I have a loving husband, and more than a quiver full of happy, healthy, wonderful children. And those are just the big things. Life is full of little happinesses that surprise me all the time when they land on my shoulder and blow in my ear. I love me a good sunset. A good meal. Baby toes and dimpled elbows...
But it's Lent. And I guess because it's Lent I'm rebelling against a joyless state. We're warned to smile through our penances if we want to gain merit from them. But, jezelouise that's hard to do! I'd like to be better about taking the little penances and chores and humdrumness of the daily daily and find joy in it -- like I did when I was a kid. Like Gabe did today, turning a chore into fun. I want to be happy about mopping! I want to get a kick out of making meatloaf! And I want to smile through Lent.
Is that asking too much?
St. Philip Neri, the laughing saint, pray for me!
(Are you laughing at me, St. Philip?)