an odd assortment of weekly stills:
-a young lad in a foul mood
-books & things next to my bed
-leftover remains of strawberries
-a visit to La Brea Tar Pits
1. lego obsession
2. much needed coffee
3. craft supplies
4. long neglected christmas cactus
5. neglected homework
6. the oldest, mr. crabby-pants, staring off onto the lacrosse field
7. a fence
8. rainbow loom madness
9. the middle.
10. portraiture of the oldest.
what will be left behind when we go? some of us are very sure of what are imprint will be; others, we cling to small strands, tiny threaded marks, the beat of our child's heart. we are unsure what the legacy of our path will be, unsure that we will have something worthwhile to look back on.
in the busy rush of the day, i am a hurried soul, running from shower, to dressing, to shoes on, to kisses on boys' heads, to out the door.
other times, i slow down. and instead of running from my self, from my body, my dreams, i am present. there in that space of slowness, i find space. breathing space.
i am in the shower. the air fills with the spidery veins of heat and hope, clouding my eyes from seeing clearly, filling up my lungs with steam, so as i turn off the spray, and step out of the shower, i am surrounded by the heavy warm air, thick man-made fog.
i pause. my skin. bright red from the heat of a too hot shower, my bare body unabashed and briefly free. i lean in close to the mirror, and try to wipe away the clouded mirror pane; and there, ever so briefly, i see all the marks of a life lived so far, the wrinkles and worry lines that now frame my face. i wonder what have i become. but before i despair, i lean in closer, holding up the mirror with my hands, my breath fogging the mirror once again, and in that fraction of a second before the damp closes back in again, i see a glimmer of the deep in my eyes.
there, i see into the beating of my heart resetting my soul anew. there i see that my life's work is not all unaccounted for and disregarded. there is the brief connection between who i am and what i do.
there i see that the mark i am making as i tread across the days is not all ugly and scarred, but hope-filled and beautiful.
cleaning house. wondering why we have a giraffe on our dining room table. saying goodbye to the christmas decorations. watching, from afar, my youngest building legos (the b+w p.o.v. from the couch). spending time with my middle. capturing our sweet old Bella (dog) up on the couch (where she is not supposed to be, but loves to be). we have been utterly lazy. no news of fabulous journeys over winter break from this house. but as i have said/quoted before, "enough is as good as a feast."
old man time is as fierce as he ever was. he ravages our bodies and steals our dreams out from under our pillows. he is the never ceasing black hole that tries to stamp out the light that emits from our hearts. older than the world itself, he tries to age us all, blot us out, making our hearts as heavy as stone so that we fall away into the night letting go of the small tendrils that keep us tied to the here and now.
there are days when i find myself giving into this frenzy that old man time brings. i am convinced he is the true inventor of the internet, the true genius behind the seconds that blend into minutes that blend into hours and days where life is wasted and forgotten. as much as i try to slow down, life keeps spinning forward anyway, and i am left with a threadbare lace that disintegrates as i try to sew it back together.
annie dilliard wrote in her book, The Writing Life:
"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives."
and i find it so so very true. and timely. and real. and as honest as it gets for me who often sees the fear of age and time staring her in the face when she looks in the mirror. and it is so true for today. for the here and the now and the age of the internet. for those of us ignoring the march of time and for those of us tentatively stepping, or joyfully pouncing forth, into this new year.
i think, as modern, western cultured humans, we believe that having more of something, more of everything, more of life, that this more will help us leave our imprint; it will help weigh us down and and aid us in leaving our lasting mark on this world. however, as i age, i am ever so convinced that it is the less, the lighter we walk, the less we hold onto, is what truly helps us live into the life we are given. and in this lightness, this is where we make our soft imprint on the world, blotting out the void of old man time and the absence of meaning he threatens us with.
as i am slowly packing up christmas, tending to the needles scattered on the floor, wrapping up the fragile ornaments and slowly saying goodbye to the green of the tree, i am trying to allow this letting go be my mantra. "how we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives." i am am trying to make this be the thread of my days.
i cannot control this old man time. but i can chose how i spend my days that spends my life.
and that leaves me with the lightest, happiest feeling of all. xxoo
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ excuse the rambling. joining in with write alm for january prompts.
"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing. A schedule defends from chaos and whim. It is a net for catching days. It is a scaffolding on which a worker can stand and labor with both hands at sections of time. A schedule is a mock-up of reason and order—willed, faked, and so brought into being; it is a peace and a haven set into the wreck of time; it is a lifeboat on which you find yourself, decades later, still living."
Ahh...... the sound of a fresh page. a new sheet of paper. the turning over of a new leaf. discovering a brand new book. i love beginnings, and january is so full of ripe promise and anticipation that i am always sucked down the rabbit hole full of new ideas, projects and dreams. i love this in between moments of calm, the aftermath of the drunk frenzy that christmas can be. here in these last few days of winter break, the boys are sleeping in (as they have stayed up waaaaay too late), we are lounging lazy lizards and i let my mind wander about all the hopes of this new year.... usually by the end of january however, i am bogged down by the mid-winter blues and admonishing myself for all my fanciful dreams -it is like starting heavy weighted book with much joyous vigor, only to find your self wanting to chuck the book out the window come the start of chapter 2.
but as I stated above, 2014 you are most welcome. i have (or am forcing myself to have) really good feelings about you. 14 was always my lucky number growing up (as i couldn't possibly have 7 be my lucky number....way too common...so I had to pick something different but not entirely random) so I hope this year will be a blessedly abundant one, full of hard work, elbow greased discipline and every day joy. full of more fiction writing. more nature walking. more photography. more connections. more self discipline.
so i lift my cup of coffee and toast you, 2014, that i am not following my dreams down a rabbit hole of quagmire and disdain, instead i am climbing a mountain full of abundance, hope and hard work; knowing that i may not reach the top by the year's end, but that i keep going forward any way, ever onward into this beautiful world known as Life.