pasta with sausage and tuscan beans
I am learning that you can never predict your moments–your moments of such beauty or fragility or joy that make you pause, sometimes with your jaw dropped open. You never know when sentiment is suddenly going to overtake you just because your brother is helping you make dinner or because the trees are so red they overwhelm you or because you realize just how much you love the people you are with. You never know when your prayers will be reduced to perhaps a single word of thanks because it is all you can manage in such sudden overwhelming and unexpected holiness.
You can do a little to speed it along sometimes. You can take yourself out of your home or your office and into the woods. You can dim the lights and light the candles and turn the television off. You can listen to music, the songs that get you every time. There are a couple of them for me. Dave Matthew’s Band’s The Maker. And recently, like today in the car, Mumford and Son’s Holland Road.
But I still believe
Though there’s cracks you’ll see
When I’m on my knees I still believe
And when I hit the ground
Neither lost nor found
If you’ll believe in me I’ll still believe
Life has been kind of rough for us lately. Not in a particular way, like we need someone to pity us for anything. Just in a kind of trudging along when there is not any particularly good news (but not any particularly bad news either). Some things recently have been particularly stressful. Some things–family time, weekends–have been particularly good. But in general, there has just been this sense of roughness about it all, like we just need to make it through the year and then we can breathe some fresh air in 2014.
And it’s in those times when those moments catch you, when you suddenly have tears in your eyes in the car because everything strikes you at once.
This pasta dish made me happy. Purely joyfully happy as I ate it on the couch last night. Gerrit had to work late and I sat on the couch watching TV and eating this pasta out of a bowl. And when I was done, I went straight to skillet with my fork and ate some more. And if that doesn’t mark a good pasta dish, and something to be joyful about when things feel generally rough, I don’t know what does.