13 February 2013

Stumbling From Mardi Gras Into The Wild

Sometimes, the next day after a lovely and loud party, I need a little bit of space to myself.  I need a bit of downtime. I need a time apart from the food and the drink, a setting down from the laughing and the talking and the loudness, I need space from the eating and the feasting, I need space from the rumbling children because they also have been out too long and are late rolling into bed. I need that space to myself, but have difficulty finding it in the wide expanse, finding it in the wild of the day to day.  I know that the quiet I long for is there. It is fleeting though and difficult to see amongst all the clamor of the living. It is here under the warm stone pressed tight in your child's palm. It is there in the sticky sweet smell of too much ice cream consumed lingering on your child's cheek. It is there, in the quiet moment at dawn, while grinding the coffee, watching the sun jump off colors pink and hushed purples against the garage. It is there in the coffee finally steaming warm pressed in hand.  A Quiet that suddenly rushes in over the clambering of voices and the sound of the television. It is found stuck behind the in-between click of the dishwasher finishing its run and the microwave after it stops humming.  But I have to catch it; I have to listen for it. I have to listen for it so that when I find myself in this absolute Solitude of Quiet, I can actually slow down enough to feel it.

 I have to listen for it, and be prepared, for as it so happens, this sudden unexpected moment of Quiet, will stumble back out the door faster than you can take your first sip of tea. It escapes back out the door during the loud intake of breath, or the rustling of papers from N in the other room, or when one of the boys coughs in his sleep. Most likely I watch the quiet ripple across the room, away from me as the dog barks, the phone rings, and the boys run into the room. I love when I feel it though. It is like the breath of a new born baby, delicate and strong all at the same time. I love feeling the quiet and knowing it was there. I don't believe you have to be religious at all to wonder what that quiet is, to want it and long for it. Sometimes it is a welcome and precious exhaustion after the wildness of a party. Other times it is unwanted and uncared for.

The day after Mardi Gras is the perfect day for me to try to find, to try to listen for this quiet before it slips away. A time to try to set apart, into the wild, to find the quiet, the dark, the unexpected, the clamor of silence. It is so difficult to obtain most days that I try to welcome the little space I create the day after the party is over.

It is still dark here, early on this Wednesday morning. Light from the hidden sun is slowly touching the buildings outside, cold and blue before the dawn. Restless and sleepy, I feel a strange disconnect between the new season of almost spring that is beginning and all the living that is set out before me. The list seems endless of small and large chores swirling around in my head: laundry, the boys, dinner, bills. Trying to check off each little note before the day unfolds with hopes that this or that will get done on time. The strong desire within me to just stay calm and focused seems so intangible. With so many winds blowing around a busy-boy-filled house, most of my living seems incongruous with what this quiet is trying to teach me. I feel a bit like the reluctant earth, wanting to stay in the cold, dark dew of night, under cover & hidden in the shadows.

There is a fruit tree out in our backyard. With so much life through the winter here, I was convinced that the tree had died. It was struggling so much when we moved in, that it should die during the winter seemed almost overly symbolic. But I was wrong. It it didn't die. It has been hibernating and struggling to find itself anew for this coming spring. I see tiny shots of white here and there. Dots of life, tiny dots of flowers smattered across the dark lines of branches at dawn. These tiny, flowers hold some sign, some hope that shoots of green will follow, leaves will grow and new life will form. The sign that Blahuary, that this here, will melt away into the ground, becoming something else.

Today I will keep holding onto this image. This image of hopeful and tiny blushes of white and pink dotted against the cold blue branches of dawn.
PS. Is there something you do during this time of almost spring? Is there something you do after a big party to regroup? Also, sorry for reusing some images from other posts. Hope you will forgive me. xoxo


  1. Rebecca, beautifully written! Your photographs pair perfectly with your prose. Keep it up!

    Living in the country has been my quiet year. Sometimes it's too quiet which makes my brain extra noisy;)

    1. I would ADORE to live in the country. Sometimes I imagine it as all sugar and lovely-ness and just the right amount of quiet all the time, but I suspect it would make my brain very LOUD indeed.

      thanks for your sweet words. xo

  2. When you have children it's so difficult to find a small pocket of calm and just breath, filling your head with only your thoughts and voice, but I so understand where you are coming from.

    I love that you have blossom - I have to go in search for some as I'm desperate for any kind of sign Spring is actually on her way.

    Take care,

    Nina x

    1. Oh I do so hope you find some blossom and some sort of perfect hints of spring! I can only imagine what beautiful images of Spring you will find. xo

  3. It's such a beautifully written post... Love those leaves on the snow!

    1. Thanks so. & thanks so for stopping by! xo


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