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When I came back from Italy for my senior year of college, I also came into a whole new wide open place in my life. The most obvious change in my view was this guy called John. This guy rode a bicycle called Bike. And this guy would ride up on Bike and say good-night to me through my first floor window. I had such a lovely dorm room that last year of college, a pocket-sized room decorated with art and girlish dreams, a room filled with cool light that danced in through fluttering leaves. But one of my favourite things about this room was the two tall windows looking out toward the back of campus. Their only adornment was sheer white curtains that would let the light in and I never drew the blinds. Instead, I chose to change in the closet. And I kept my door shut in the summertime because I preferred the slightly warm summer breeze to the cool dry loud air of the air-conditioner that ran all night long (and then some) in the lounge that serviced our “Floor”. It seemed fitting that my room, my windows, should face toward the back of campus in that senior year, just as it’d seemed fitting that my windows looked toward the busy courtyard in the first two years of college. My very extroverted life had taken a turn, a turn inwards, a turn toward inner probings and contemplations: toward finding myself in the quiet places. I spent time lying on the bed that seemed to take up half my room and looking out my windows into the leafy boughs of the trees standing guard. But then I would hear a knock on the glass pane (or wooden sill when the window was open), drawing me out of my reverie and deep thoughts and to my window. John would be sitting there on Bike, hair blown through from the wind and a smile on his face. Sometimes I would throw on my shoes and go out to join him and he would walk between me and Bike, other times we would just talk through the open window, me on my knees with my elbows on the sill and him balancing on Bike.
These days look far different. That wide open place that I found myself in is behind me and I feel as though I am presently walking, climbing a rather rough path—or so it seems when I am woken in the night multiple times by two little people. And when those same little people are crying at the same time because they are still too tiny to do much to help themselves. And also now that that guy John who is my patient husband is away for most of the day at work. But there are still windows.
Our windows in our third floor flat have a view toward the east side of town laying beyond the gas station and austere standing three storey apartment buildings; and on the other side, toward the distant mountains in the north beyond more apartment buildings. Unfortunately, our windows are constantly covered with moisture (which then runs down creating huge puddles on the windowsills) so that the view through them is like straining to see through murky water. Sometimes we even have to open the window to find out if it’s raining or not! But a bright spot has come to my days since John began work. Knowing Aria would find this transition hard, I decided that it would be good to open the kitchen window and wave to John as he walked out toward the street. Aria stands on the counter beside me and we wave and blow kisses as John heads off to work. And what a refreshing point in my busy morning! Not only is it lovely to have those last few moments to “be” with John and send him off with blown kisses and smiles, but it’s also lovely to be able to survey the morning and drink in the air without the hindrance of the murky pane. It has become one of the bright spots of my day.

4 Responses to “Windows”

  1. Elizabeth Macrae
    March 26th, 2007 10:09

    Rachel, I love the way that you write! I feel like I am reading the complete works of Rachel Clancy. I am glad that you are choosing to look out the windows. It can be so hard to see past the chaos and fatigue of this “MUMMY” world. You have really encouraged me today Rachel. This comment has taken me 30 minutes to write, because of three wonderful little distractions running around me. I miss you very much. I would so much love to join you for high tea and conversation. Take care, and your family is Beautiful!!!

  2. Rachel
    March 26th, 2007 14:58

    Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement and I’m glad I was able to do the same for you today. May you be so blessed in this challenging, yet wonderful season of life! High tea sounds lovely.:-)

  3. Jayne
    March 29th, 2007 03:21

    It’s good to hear John is working but I know you have enjoyed having him home. My favorite time of my whole long life was the summer I had 3 under 3 years and I could just sit and enjoy them (because I couldn’t do much eles and no one expected me too) ENJOY the season. miss you. Jayne & Dean

  4. Ryan
    April 11th, 2007 07:46


    The view that we have of our lives does indeed change. The beautiful thing is that our lives are still the same works of art they have always been. Our windows may be clear or murky at times, but our view does hinder the masterplan of God.

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