Word of the Week: Stolid

stolid  /adj./  not easily stirred or moved mentally.  unemotional.  impassive.  matter-of-fact.  inert.  wooden.  uninterested.  unmoved, unresponsive.  lumpish.

stolid  /adj./  1.  I can tell that I'm out of practice at this.  In the past, the word I chose would shape my destiny for the week.  I picked "stolid," not only because Ms. Estes used it several times in her book and it caught my fancy, but because I could use a bit of stolid life.  I have talked to several people this week who said, "I read your blog.  Sounds like you're having a hard time."  And I needed a bit of unemotional, lumpish days to counteract all the internal upheaval.  I'm not sure if it was just wishful thinking or if an eight-month hiatus from word-of-the-week has changed things, but the week was not stolid in any way.  In fact, there were moments when I thought, "This is the exact opposite of stolid.  Where are you 'stolid'?"  And so in the midst of change, even word-of-the-week has failed me, and I feel as though I have lost my bearings altogether. 

stolid  /adj./  2.  On Friday David came home for lunch and asked me about my word-of-the-week.  He told me he'd never heard of it.  I assured him that it was an actual word.  "Well, what does it mean?"  I told him.  He looked skeptical.  I asked him if he was teasing me.  He grinned and denied it.  I asked him if he wanted to fight about it.  He said no and tried to kiss me.  I told him just for that I was only going to kiss him stolidly.  I tried as hard as I could to remain impassive (I had a point to prove, see?), and it worked for about ten seconds.  Then I gave up.  After the kiss, knowing that I failed, I asked, "So how'd I do at stolid kissing?"  He told me that he didn't marry me for my stolidness.  Which was some consolation, I suppose.

(It has come to my attention that there may be far too many kissing pictures on my blog.  More evidence that stolidness is not one of my strong points.)

stolid  /adj./  3.  After several days of tears about the length of the school day, Ethan has resigned himself to his fate.  This morning he sat on the couch, staring out the window, and said stolidly, "Today is the 11th day of school," and then asked quietly, "How many more days of school in this week?"  Caleb told him three if you count today.  And then he gave a stolid little sigh and went to dump the sand out of his shoes.  I almost prefer the tears to this stoic, subdued surrender.  It was like something had died in him.  (I told you, I can't be stolid for anything.  Melodramatic, however, is no problem.) 

(This un-stolid picture was taken at our annual back-to-school brunch.)

stolid  /adj./  4.  Tonight David and I are going to the viewing of a friend.  He died unexpectedly on Sunday morning and left behind an amazing wife, four children and a baby on the way.  I can imagine that he did not want to leave them on any condition.  And still, heaven called him home.  My heart is broken for his wife and children.  I have wondered several times this week at how God bears it, He who is full of perfect compassion and boundless charity, how He can stand it, and how His heart must break at His children's unimaginable grief.  I do not believe in a stolid God.  I believe he weeps right along with them and with us, who know and love them.  I believe in a God that aches for us, that suffered every pain and tragedy.  All I can do is pray.  But I pray to a God that knows what is best, that knows it will be alright in the end, and sends comfort and angels in the meantime.

(More about that comfort here.)