The days prior to our trip to Switzerland were a bit scattered and chaotic for Steve and me. Our home, still decorated with Valentine's Day remnants, was a jungle of sticky notes, schedules and highlighted lists pasted in random places, reminding us to remember everything that we knew we would so easily forget.
The daily grind can make us feel a little robotic at times. Our work is less infused with love and more infused with the fear that we won't get everything done. We are programmed to achieve our goals, running through the house wide-eyed, brows furrowed, responding to everyone in monotone voice...."Yes, you can have a snack. Pick up your shoes. Please flush. Wash your hands."
Sometimes it takes the most gentle nudge, a whisper, a stillness to break into our chaos and pull us back into peace. Two days before take-off, the nudge I needed came swiftly and softly in the form of the most beautiful snow I had ever seen.
The boys saw it first. Arms loaded with laundry, I was running from room to room, delivering the freshly folded goods, when I saw them, standing quietly, pink noses pressed to frosty panes, little eyes admiring a big surprise. Fluffy clusters of snowflakes swirling down from the sky, waiting to be chased by five little boys.
Then, just like that, the silent awe turned to squeals and screams. The watching was over, it was definitely time to run! I dropped the laundry and grabbed my camera, following fast feet outdoors to take in the day's delight.
Seeing them run with wild excitement around the yard, mouths wide open in anticipation of the falling flakes landing on their wiggly tongues put me in stitches.
And, it felt SO good to laugh, to break out of my robotic state, to feel more human again after being hyper-focused for days on preparing for the trip.
Soon, the boys realized that one of the gang was missing. They began calling out for him, and I snuck back into the house to see if Andrew was still inside, the chant of his name still echoing from behind.
The house was so quiet, the only sound drifting from the nursery, a soft snore from the littlest one still holding fast asleep. But, there, in the quiet was Andrew, sitting in front of the windows where all of the excitement first began. Worried that there was something wrong, I asked him why he wasn't outside with his brothers. He smiled and reassured me that he was right where he wanted to be. "It's so amazing, Mom. I just want to take it all in."
Amen to that. Amen to that.