White Flakes and Snow Jobs

We’re at my family’s home across the country from our California home. I’m sitting in a chair looking out the window, and there are white flakes dancing around outside. For a moment I thought “ash,” and then I realized, no, snow. Ax will be thrilled when he wakes up. He has been begging to see snow and this will be his first time seeing it come down fresh from the sky. When we tucked into bed for the night last night I could hear him tossing and turning and sighing big sighs of unsettled-ness. I said, “What’s on your mind, honey?” He said, “Nothing.” I said, “Oh, that sounds nice.” Then he added, “I just hope our family is safe from the fires and smoke.”

I should have said, “me too.” But instead I quickly went down the list of all our family members and where each of them was, out of the fire.

And then he said, “I mean, our friends too.” And I told him that people got out before it was too dangerous and that even though there is a big fire and smoke the reason people leave is to stay safe and healthy. Like, trying to convince myself.

And then he said, “What about the owls and the other birds and animals?” And I said, “Wild animals are very smart creatures. They can sense when danger is coming and will go.”

And then I realized I was making stuff up to reassure my son, but that it probably sounded as much like a BS snow job to him as it did to me. So I got back to a more honest, more conscious way of relating. I said, “I actually don’t know what happens to all the animals. Probably some will be safe and some won’t. What I want you to feel and to know is that we are safe, you are safe and we can wish for others that they will be safe too.”

“Ok,” he said. And then we said our little hodgepodege evening prayer:

“Universe, please reveal what there is to be revealed. Please heal what there is to be healed.

Show me the way of patience, tolerance, kindness, and love for myself and for others.

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Please help me be willing to let things be as good as they can be, as good as they are.

Thank you for my life. Spirit is with me. Amen.”

And then, for good measure, we added: “Please protect all the people and animals.”

I’m gonna keep going.