Faithful friends, this is my 100th post. For about a week I’ve been working on a draft for what I meant to be this milestone post; it’s a chipper celebration of the names and etymologies of landforms that I promise to eventually publish. I haven’t completed that post, however, because for about the same amount of time I’ve been working on that draft, I have felt anything but chipper. Apparently a somewhat common effect of mono is that it makes a person have difficulty sleeping. This is cruelty piled upon cruelty! Added to this week being the start to my somewhat intimidating second quarter of grad school, the lack of sleep is getting me down, and I can feel myself slipping down the talus slope of discouragement.
If my mother is reading this, she shouldn’t worry too much, though. There have been a lot of encouraging moments, and I am daily reminded of all I have to be grateful for (including you, mum, and please know that I finally got around to making your stroganoff recipe, so thanks).
One of those moments came while I was browsing through my Google Reader subscriptions and came across another grace-filled post from RG, who frequently, if unknowingly, drops gifts of poetry and reflection into my morning routine. Here is a prayer she posted today, from the theologian Walter Rauschenbusch (1861-1918), titled “Thanksgiving Day Prayer”:
For the wide sky and the blessed sun,
For the salt sea and the running water,
For the everlasting hills
And the never-resting winds,
For trees and the common grass underfoot.
We thank you for our senses
By which we hear the songs of birds,
And see the splendor of the summer fields,
And taste of the autumn fruits,
And rejoice in the feel of the snow,
And smell the breath of the spring.
Grant us a heart wide open to all this beauty;
And save our souls from being so blind
That we pass unseeing
When even the common thornbush
Is aflame with your glory,
O God our creator,
Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
A second gift came in the form of a song, “Slumber my Darling” by Alison Krauss, Yo-Yo Ma, Edgar Meyer, and Mark O’Connor, which has been a comfort in my life for over a decade now, and for which I have my father to thank, for introducing me to the song when I was an anxious 13-year old. Here’s hoping for a healthy slumber for us all.