We interrupt this story to bring you a snapshot of my life right now:

My sister and her family pulled up to my house two hours ago. The kids are running around the house screaming. Luggage is being brought up the stairs, gifts are going under the tree, there is hugging and laughter and the eating of snacks, and there is lots of chatter. There is a baby crying as he’s being put to bed, and there is the screaming of grumpy but ecstatic cousins, and there are lots of footsteps on the stairs. There is”let’s not play that tonight, let’s wait till the morning” and lots of “let’s get on your pajamas! It’s time to go to bed,” followed by a lack of follow through, and children doing basically what they want.

There is lots of chatting between my sister Jenni and me. Chatting about wonderful things, and also chatting about loss and pain and disappointment. Chatting about the tragedies that can occur in a family system, and about how all we can really do is cling to each other and try to feel love. There is pain and joy in our chat. There is loss and redemption, already, even after only two hours.

If there’s one thing we Weeds can do, it’s get real. Fast.

I live for moments like this: A bunch of people in a house, existing together, feeling each others’ warmth, listening to each others’ voices.

Being with each other.

This is family. This is Christmas. This is what life’s all about.

(Next post is about “writing a book proposal is really hard.” Stay tuned.)