In which I try to explain why I feel like often when I speak honestly it's sad and angry, because on the whole I don't feel like a sad and angry person, and if you ran into me at church or on the sidewalk you wouldn't think I was either.
The trying and tiring and disheartening and isolating are easy to write about, because everyone has known them, and we long to be known as we endure them. There is no mystery in weariness, because everyone has cried out "Why?" and "How long?" We share our sadness so that we will not be sad alone.
But while happy families may be all alike, the Good is much harder to share. It is too easily caricatured into the insipid, too quickly candied by a sentimental recipient mind. Finding a word truer than an innocuous "wonderful" to express the mystery of our private joys is dangerous. The Good is too intimate to describe or share; even, sometimes, to think about. To touch it is to risk cheapening it, and to share it is to risk turning it into someone else's boredom.
The weight of a warm, confused baby when you lift her from her nap; the way a little boy trotting along clumpily in overalls supersaturates the heart; watching how a bowl of grapes (!) can make a little one the single happiest person on earth; the extemporaneous sacred yodeling of an aspiring hymnwriter; the incisive question unexpectedly sprouted from the hidden mind of one's own child; that hour when everyone is together and laughing and a mother knows she's the center of all these people by God's grace--that is already being shared with the only people who can truly delight in it, in the moment in which it is real and now. It's Better that way, if you ask me.