I’ve been ruggedly tired since we set our clocks ahead yesterday morning. The sky was still blue-black when we left the house for Cal’s hockey game. I did my best to be conversational in the car, despite my overriding wish to close my eyes and rest. When we got to the rink, Alexi went into the locker room with Cal, and Abbott was off with his friends, the other older siblings of Cal’s teammates. While Alexi coached, I sat alone in the bleachers so as to avoid small talk with other parents. The cold permeated even more than usual through my defenseless fatigue. The raucous music that celebrated goals and filled the space between periods jarred me to the same degree I usually find it energizing.
All four of us spent Sunday afternoon at a pasta-making class. After mixing ingredients, kneading them together, and then letting the dough rest, we rolled it through a machine again and again, transforming it into long sheets. We learned to cut and squeeze and crimp the pasta dough into some of our favorite configurations. There is a magic in making something yourself you’ve always taken for granted as already that substance. We made bowtie pasta, pinching it into shape and lifting it to a tray in one quick, fluid motion. Cal and Alexi worked in tandem making tortellini. Cal cut rows of circles in the dough and applied a dab of cheese; Alexi shaped them. Abbott wanted to work alone with his dough and did nothing assembly-line style. He cut, and filled, and shaped his tortellini one-at-a-time, lining them up in straight rows as he completed them. Our teacher cooked it all, and after we cleaned our work space we ate the fruits of our labor for lunch: the bowtie pasta tossed with kale; the tortellini with its warm, fragrant, flavorful lemony ricotta; noodles tossed with the marinara we’d also made.
Back at home, the light remained as we cooked and ate, again, then cleared the table. It wasn't fully gone until the boys’ lights were out.
This morning, after driving the boys to school in the now-dim morning light, I sat in the kitchen and drank an extra cup of coffee, noting that I can still see through bare trees to Mt. Rainier out a side window; soon, only green will be visible that direction. Soon, hockey season will be over, and we’ll sleep through early morning's bluish light on the weekends. The trees will fill out, and the earth will become lush again; when spring gives way to summer we’ll once again have a richness of time together. Eventually we’ll start to miss the structure of the winter, and I’ll miss my children’s younger selves as they were months ago. And we’ll move through it all again, and set our clocks back to how they were before Sunday.