Five Minute Friday: For When You See the Ugly

I wrote these both in one day, from two different writing prompts. The first word was ugly, and the second one was rest

Sometimes I see the ugly most. I look in the mirror and see wrinkles and dull eyes and neglected hair. I wander the house with my arms wrapped around a baby and all the things I hate stare at me — toys on every floor, dust thick on my dresser, stacks of books and papers, and baskets of laundry. Outside I notice brown ragged grass, sad houses, and tired store fronts. I see crumpled water bottles and lost receipts blowing through parking lots. Life is grey and old and too much and I don’t like any of it.

Sometimes I see the ugly.

And that tells me I need rest. My soul needs rest — time to still and quiet. My body needs rest — time to sleep. My mind needs rest — open spaces and beauty.  Rest. Rest happens when I go to bed before ten, when I pause and feel the goodness of a shower, when I look back and remember the love in my day. Rest happens in play, in good meals, in whispered prayer as I work, in the weight of a kind hand on my arm. Rest happens every morning under a blanket on the couch with a cup of coffee. Rest happens when I say “no” to another event, when the kitchen counters are clean (even if the dining room table isn’t), when I set a timer and write for five minutes, or ten. Rest happens when I look my man in the eye and ask a meaningful question and listen with my heart and not just my ears; rest happens when he does the same for me. Rest happens when I trim my schedule and my clutter and when I find peace in the middle of the mess that remains.