Momma said there’d be days like this

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Days like today are the gods’ gift to the unemployed, for it is on days like this — days rich with light, color and texture — that those of us struggling in the wake of joblessness give thanks.

Days like this don’t come around often, and that we are able to bask in them is a gift, no matter how fleeting.

I worked for years in a tiny office with no windows, my constant view the rear ends rushing past my door, heading to a meeting or the restroom. I had a Gauguin print of a Tahitian scene hanging in that little office. “My window,” I’d explain to anyone who admired it.

That print transported me to a place that looks and feels an awful lot like this very moment.

So I am enjoying this day, this moment, these amazing fall colors, entertained by my favorite Elvis Costello tunes, airing out the house, giving thanks all the while both for what I had and that I no longer have it.

Days like this remind me of the joy of sitting on my postage-stamp of a deck, sun on skin, butt in chair, feet on rail, fingers on laptop, thankful for wi-fi. It’s as if I won the lottery, with the big prize being the privilege of sopping up this day like a slice of crusty bread on the bottom of a salad bowl. Days like this make me forget how difficult life is after an unexpected financial body blow; they’re the vacations not taken, the new shoes not bought.

Days like this don’t come around very often, and that I was able to spend a little time with my mother, a little time trying to make some money, a little time pondering and writing and breathing in the beauty of this Indian summer makes me feel both humble and thankful.

Days like this make me consider flipping my former employer a mental middle finger, but I can’t, really, because days like these make me happy that it’s my butt in this chair on this deck.

There will be plenty time to worry about bills and making money, but for this moment, that I have this day, this beautiful October day, fills me completely.

This post was originally an Editor’s Pick on Open Salon in October, 2010.


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Journalist Maria Stuart lives in Howell. She worked at The Livingston County Press/Livingston County Daily Press & Argus as a reporter, editor and managing editor from 1990-2009. She is often spotted holding court at Uptown Coffeehouse. You can check out her website by clicking here.