Thursday, November 02, 2006


today i wanted to introduce you to shannon, my wonderful wife of seven plus years. some of you know her, and others may know her well, but there are some who don't know her at all, so i thought i would use today's post to give you a chance to get to know her a little. or at least see a picture of her. this is a picture from san juan, puerto rico, on a vacation we took a few years back when vacations were still within the realm of possibility.

the master bedroom in our new house (we moved here in july) is directly next to jack's room. one of our favorite features of the house is that it has wood floors throughout, which we think make the house look more natural. besides the look, wood floors have that sort of squeaky quality that makes the house feel quircky and authentic, like its got a little life of its own. but at night, when jack should be sleeping, those creaky floorboards provide more nuisance than character. i have learned how to tread lightly at night. i have figured out how to not so much step as slide across the boards, so as to keep my toddler asleep. i have learned this. shannon hasn't.

well, its not so much that she hasn't learned it. its really that she's...well...she's a heavy walker. i mean, when she walks, day or night, its just heavy. if you didn't know any better you would think a sizeable bear had gotten into our home, in search of food. its that heavy. now, don't get me wrong. shannon is a pretty petite, woman, all of 5 feet and a couple of inches, and there's just not much to her, even when she is pregnant. so its not that she's heavy, just that she's a heavy walker. when i broke this news to her, hoping that she might try not stomping across the bedroom at 3am when she has to pee for the 7th time, she told me that her mom also used to tease her when she was younger, saying that she sounded like a herd of elephants coming down the stairs. c'mon, a bear is better than a herd of elephants...

anyway, i bring this up just to say that i have been reflecting the last few days about why it is interesting to me that shannon is such a heavy walker. i mean, why would someone who is often so meek and mild be so substantial in her step? she blames her flat feet. i'm not sure what to pin it on, but my reflection has netted this conclusion: i am glad she is a heavy walker. because everytime i hear that sweet little stomp i am aware of the weight of her presence, the significance of her step. her heavy walking is an unmistakable mark of the meaning of us sharing space, sharing dust, sharing breath, sharing our lives: it is weighty and significant. it matters. so stomp on, shannon. stomp on.

but that's not what i say at 3am. i cannot be held responsible for those words...

swift and stealthy,

greg.


6 comments:

Mary Milinovich said...

I think that very thing when i hear my upstairs neighbors walking about there business. dang, they sound like a herd of elephants. or bears for that matter. but they certainly don't fill my heart with love like Shannon does for all. now greg, this sliding/skating thing: that i need to see. or perhaps hear...

mego said...

I am laughing very hard (on the inside) because I used to pick on Shannon in college about that - I don't think I ever said "heavy walker", but I could always tell when she was coming down the hall - even when she tried to trick me (the loud walking would stop about 10 feet before our door)! You'll have to ask her about it...

mego said...

I have to add that I love Shannon - heavy walker that she is!

Crafty P said...

oh, so nice to see Shannon. I was just going to put in a request and dedication that you post about her. I hope you're feeling better, Shannon. You seem to have a rough and tumbly beginning to pregnancy.

love christina

Darlene Kelley said...

Greg~
I'm glad you're out there in the world. And I loved what you said about Shannon. I, too, am a heavy walker and have often felt like a herd of elephants instead of someone with real weight in this world.

Looking at your incredible site and glorious family, I am reminded of how connected we all are. We spent a short time on the same bus together. And I'm so glad you included me in this mailing because it would have been too easy to forget the connections...and like I said, it's really good to know you're there. So many colleagues seem---how do I say this--holier, saner, more at ease with their humanity---than I am.
And yet, I know the strength of ministry comes from the depth of that humanity. So your honesty, your poetry, your pictures make me feel better about being really me and really a Methodist pastor. And it's really your old buddy from Drew---Peace and love, my friend~ Darlene

monica said...

your wife is so beautiful! how dare you post such a phrase as "heavy walker" about her. heavy should be reserved for "heavy drinker" "heavy lifter" etc. how about "substantial walker" then it give the effect of a significant presence with out the pounds.