If you ask me what heaven means to me, I’d probably say I think of it as a promise of good things, nothing more nothing less. I am spiritual but not religious so I can’t be any more specific than that. But what prompted this post is neither spiritual nor religious but something extremely mundane.
It all started with the husband getting this brainwave that I should “Get out and have fun!” by myself while he takes care of the busy toddler. He suggested I go out in the mornings for a walk with a tumbler of piping hot coffee, put on my earphones and listen to my most upbeat song and come back all refreshed. Obviously little girl had other plans for mornings, which included bouncing on my tummy as a way of saying good morning and then clinging on to me for every single minute after. The idea of morning walks having failed, the husband then suggested I go watch a movie in the nearby mall while he entertained baby girl in the indoor playground three levels below. It did sound tempting but to be honest, I realised I really am not the “Get out and have fun!” kinda woman. I am more of a “Snuggle in the couch in comfy pyjamas” person. After much prodding and pushing we did end up going to the mall, but instead of going to the cinemas I told my husband I wanted to wander aimlessly around the bookstore.
Lame, you say? To be honest, it wasn’t even a big bookstore. But A) For once I didn’t have a curious toddler with itchy hands strapped to my chest, and B) it was the beginning of the month so I had my entire pocket money to spend on books. It was like getting a free pass to choose my next best friend. The anticipation! The excitement of newness! As I lazily browsed the book spines, getting drunk on the new book smell, a small thought popped in my head.
This is my heaven!
And just like that, I realised that the idea of having to define heaven is not really that intimidating after all. If only you think of heaven as not ethereal (for the lack of a better word) but something you hold close to your heart, you will realise than heaven is a lot closer than you think it is. Some might consider it sacrilege, my trivializing the idea of heaven but I am a simple person, and get immense joy from small things.
So yes, my slice of heaven has comfort, laughter and all of my favourite things. For comfort, it has my Mamma’s apple skinned tummy that I snuggled next to for the better part of my childhood and well, embarrassingly, my adult life. In my slice of heaven is also the heavenly thing I call my Lazy Pyjamas (gift courtesy best friend Audrey and name courtesy Hamada) that I swear by on a tired evening to give me a good night’s sleep. Or even when someone hugs you tight and it feels just right, like you fit in perfectly. It has rib aching tear inducing doubling in uncontrollable laughter, and it really doesn’t matter what is making me laugh, although a private joke with a close person is the best kind of laughter, don’t you agree? Of late, this close person I share laughter with is my 16 month old daughter, and obviously she is a major part of my slice of heaven. Coming to the best part, my favourite things. Books of course. Loads and loads of new books and a pocket full of money to buy them and bring them home and read them over and over again and own them. And snuggles. And lazy kisses. Food, glorious food! But to be specific, that first morsel when the tastes explode in your mouth and you close your eyes and say “Mmmm, this is heavenly“. Chocolate for sure, although I realised I have the affinity towards sticky sweet chocolate of the drugstore kind rather than gourmet ones (shrug). My slice of heaven smells amazing. Of orange rinds or that crisp smell on my hands after I am done squeezing a lemon, or the squeaky clean smell of someone straight out of a shower. It also has music that takes me to my happy place, but it varies each day. Today it is Tupelo Honey. Love that song. Oooh, long warm baths. The kind that you can sink in and leave all your cares behind. Heaven would be a long long time sinking in a good smelling bath.
I guess if you look at it that way it really doesn’t take much to bring heaven on earth. For me it is anything that makes you feel happy to be alive. That warmth in my chest that makes me glow from inside. That’s heaven to me.