When one of you is self employed and the other is unemployed, one of two things can happen: every day feels like a holiday, or every day feels like every other day. In the case of my husband, it's the latter, especially when work was nil for so long. Now he is busy-busy and there isn't time to mow the lawn, have a BBQ, plant a garden, or even fly a flag! He counts himself as extremely organized and fortunate when he still has time to sit and read his Bible before he leaves the house each day.
Unemployed (for right now) I can't claim to think each day feels like a Holiday but there certainly is a predominant spirit of procrastination enveloping me. It's much easier to let things slide because I have 'plenty of time' and can do 'that tomorrow'.
Maybe we've lost that Holiday Feeling (whoa--oh, that holiday feeling....) maybe we never really had it. My memories from childhood about Holidays are fuzzy... what did we do on Memorial Day? Did we have picnics with family and friends? I grew up on a farm so the chores were always a part of the day no matter what else was going on. But we had time for family gatherings, outings to the mountains for hikes, lakes for swimming and there was usually a parade over the memorial weekend.
Raising kids, I was more in touch with the fact that a Holiday was upon us: no school for one thing! And we usually did get together with another couple, children in tow and spend an (often soggy) day grilling hot dogs and laughing over nothing much.
When I started dating Bruce, he was still very involved with Boy Scouts, as his son was a scout and Bruce , the scout master. Usually Memorial Day found us at the cemetery for a portion of the morning, where the scouts did a flag salute and a short ceremony was held. I can't think of anyone I have known personally that I have lost in a war, although I know many who have served. It was a very emotional and proud experience.
Yesterday was just a Monday in our house. Bruce needed that full day in the shop to get work done and I did the usual Monday things: laundry, list making for the week.... seems a little sad to have let the day go by and not have given much thought to what that day stands for.
Sometimes I think Holidays get viewed as inconveniences. Shoot, the store/bank/post office is closed... yesterday it was that the buses were not running on regular schedule which meant I had to make a run out to the other side of the county to pick up Bruce's brother, who doesn't drive, to bring him back here to work in the shop with Bruce. On the other hand I was relieved that the bank was closed and no checks would bounce as we needed gas in all the vehicles and the paycheck had not arrived yet. The phones would be quiet while the streets would echo with the sounds of people laughing; neighbors celebrating the day.
Still, as I drove through town and saw all the flags lining the streets, unfurled in the breeze, my heart was stirred. I didn't feel sad that there wasn't any family BBQ happening, or that I had missed a parade or a Ski-to-Sea race or a visit to the cemetery. It didn't matter that Bruce was working and that my kids are all grown so school being closed didn't affect me. It was just a moment as I looked at all those flags.
I can't even identify what I was feeling in that heart stirred moment. Pride? Honor? Sentimental thoughts? Gratitude? Blessings? Maybe a smattering of all?
Today the phones will ring and the mail will come. Cars will shuttle past on the road and the town will be quieter as most folks have gone back to work. I have my list to attend to and today a check may bounce. A friend is coming over for coffee this afternoon and the sun is shining. A few flags are still up and I raise my cup... in gratitude for all the blessings of this life... noticed or forgotten.