Posted by: alegra22 | September 7, 2009

Chasing Daffodils

daffodilsSpring is creeping over the land like a young cat. It pounces, swats, rolls around exposing its soft belly, and then it crouches. It pauses. It remains perfectly still, its eyes locked on some shadow or flickering light that has distracted it from its true purpose – to chase the daffodils out of hiding and tell Winter to back off with a well aimed swat.

In those pauses, I run around throwing catnip like it is confetti. I sing songs about tuna and fresh cream. I beg and purr. Come here Spring, come here

I try to help Spring regain its focus. It is the least I can do.

Today, it felt like all my efforts to usher in the new season had met with success. Our deck glowed with sunlight, the weeds sprouted like they were stars in a musical, and an ambitious, energetic “to-do” list started to unroll in my mind. A To-Do list that *might* be super-charged by hormones. Last week the ‘mellow’ that Joaquin has been leaking into my system mixed itself with a new infusion of motivation. I am a woman with plans ( and an extra hour of work time now that the kids’ daycare hours have finally been extended) .

So, buzzing with all of this promise that Spring has finally agreed to hang around, I dragged my books outside. I pulled the mat covering our surfboards onto the deck and flopped down…at which point I remembered that I’m 25 weeks pregnant and flopping down on my belly isn’t a good idea. It was a rude awakening.

I’ve begun walking around with my hands on my belly whenever they are not needed for other activities. I do this for two reasons: 1) I love feeling Joaquin move around and, 2) it is a reminder not to do stupid things. Even on my third pregnancy, I still need constant supervision to protect me from my own great ideas. Example of a ‘great’ idea: climbing up on a swivel chair to reach an object on the top shelf – the fact that I have lived this long validates the saying that God protects the innocent and the foolish.

With the novel coming together, the thesis beginning to take shape, another short story submitted to a competition, our house really beginning to feel like a home, and other important things, it is no surprise that all this easy-cruising would hit a speed bump. What is the number one rule of a good story? The protagonist has to be challenged. As in something has to happen to test us.

Dan’s new job has been in a state of instability for the last 3 months. It would take too long to summarize, but it has been a roller-coaster ride for the past six months or so. He has been on a temporary contract since the company he worked for was taken over by another company and the new, permanent contracts *were* due to come out this month. After everything that has gone on, we have known better than to assume anything, so we have been waiting. Today, he explained what is going to happen and it basically means that we have no idea if Dan will have his same position in a month. We have been slowly getting used to the idea of finally being on an adult income. I was just starting to feel confident that by the end of this month, Dan would be secure in his job. Now? Not so sure. At all.

But as I made the 3 mile trek home from daycare, pushing my children in the jogger and discussing things with them like how Sol is convinced that a Daddy can have babies, only they are little babies, and once they have these little babies, the Daddy becomes a ‘Grandpa’…

( me: “Oh really? Who told you this?”

Sol: “Nobody told me, I just know these things. Witches come visit our house at night and they put magic in your belly and that is how you get a baby!”

Me: “What? I can’t hear you…this traffic is sooo noisey! Maybe we should wait ten years to try this conversation again, okay?”)

…I confronted the worse case scenario: at the end of this month, Dan may no longer have his job. I began to count our blessings. I reflected on how far we have come, all that we have been given. There is very little in our life that I can trace back to being  a result of my/our own efforts – all of the best things have been a magic recipe of one part action on our part, three part unexpected blessing from others.

So when Dan came home tonight and said, “So, are you worrying about the job?”

I smiled and said, “No, I worked it out on the way home. We’re going to be just fine. We’ve made it work before, we’ll make it work again. Either way, we really can’t lose.”

Dan looked at me and said, “Wow, what’s gotten into you?”

Me, “I blame it on this third child of ours. There is something about him.”

And it is true, but it is more than that. It is the whole picture; there is something about our lives and the season ahead. It is present in every moment, waiting for recognition. It is the young cat waiting to pounce. It is in the playful shadows and the distracting light.

Inside of me, the daffodils are pushing up through the dark earth of winter and I am ready to play.



  1. Couldn’t have said it better myself. No really…I’m hoping to get to your level one day…baby steps. Speaking of which, I’m not having baby #3 and my hubby *already* lost his job but we’re still fine, too.

    And even though we’re heading into Fall here, and everything is opposite, that sense of promise isn’t. Maybe it’s something in the air…and I felt Joaquin waving all the way over here. So thank you 😉 And thank him 🙂

    • It is so wonderful to be back in contact with you! I am actually sitting here waiting for your blog to upload on my slow internet…and thank you, I have just given my belly a little tap for you and Joaquin just tapped on back ;o)

  2. :)) have made smile and look forward to our Fall weather beginning here. I am adopting your positive outlook for each day is a beginning. I have enjoyed and needed to read this blog today. Thanks! Enjoy the spingtime!!

  3. Good morning sunshine. Hey you just wanted to say hello. Glad to find you in good humor. I have just had my 3rd cup of coffee and am ready to tackle my day, but thought I would shoot you off a hello first. Talk soon. Gotta run.
    Hugs and love, non

  4. I love witnessing the peace you’ve found in your life. Go easy on the projects and NO swivel chairs!

  5. Life, is just that. I sometimes think it’s one adaptation after another. God wouldn’t want a person with your skill set getting too comfortable in one place. If that makes sense. Like you said, you’ve made it past stuff before, and you’ll do it again.

  6. I love you Mrs. Alegra. Your words have a way of carrying across the vacuous realms of time and space in ways that fill my dreams and cut through the barriers I curl up behind, white-knuckled.

  7. I had to wait for the restless to settle down long enough for me to read (it’s been weird lately).

    You’ve, once again, put a smile on my face and shared a perspective that has brought peace and a smile into my world. Your to-do lists for a pregnancy are what most people would take a few years to accomplish! I’m glad for the upcoming change of season. I’ll send you all the sunshine you want, we’ve had quite a bit this year and I’m ready to reel in some cool.

  8. I am very impressed by your writing on this blog and I’d like to invite you to become a column writer for a new literary magazine on motherhood and nature. I apologize for writing to you in the comments of your blog, but I haven’t been able to locate your email address. If you could please send me an email ( then I would like to send you a formal email with details. Thank you! Kim

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