it’s been a minute or two for sure . . .

but i do exist.

it’s been a tumultuous season in my life. and there are parts too fragile and raw to post here, but let me say that every transition feels exactly like my sweet little t, who is walking more and more. she wanders here and there, her hands open to the sky. she falls down, stands up, repeats the same gestures. but above all, she does not give up. she is resilient, and she gets that from me.

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since my last two posts have been pictures, i guess it’s time to use some words

december has been (as it usually is for me) both glorious and insane.

i love christmas, really. for anyone who knows me well, you know i love presents, giving and receiving. i realized this year that getting and giving presents is like giving and receiving hope. there’s this package, big or small, and truly it could contain anything. ANYTHING! that’s amazing to me.

the insane part comes in the usual and not so usual ways. first of all, where the hell did december go? i feel like i had thanksgiving dinner, blinked, and now it is almost new years. it is like that for me every year now. i feel sad about that. for ellie, every day was a moaning of how many days until christmas! for me, i am stunned that it has come and gone again.

most people feel that way i think.

as for the not so usual ways, december has been a very reflective month for me. not in ways that have been comfortable or warm and fuzzy. the idea of the season of advent is truly astonishing if you think about it: something is about to happen and it will make it so nothing is ever the same again. i haven’t felt the hope that might accompany ideas like that, only the terror of change and new growth and how often i feel like hiding in my bed until it is all over.

but here i am. waiting and wishing and dreaming that this new year, life will break loose in a way it has not before. i am hopeful that i get to do things differently and curious to know how that might change the world. because that has been my goal all along.

to inform

when i am listening to someone talk about art, and they begin to tell me what informs the painting, i feel my heart pick up the pace. this question of where does it come from always motivates me to look deeper, to press in. i begin by noticing all of these elements that i had missed previously and suddenly, this art is no longer just in front of me, but rather is it is in and through me and we are cut from the same dna.

i have been pondering this today. what informs my life? from where do i derive my energy or strength? what are the influences which lead me to believe one thing or another? this question of what informs my life is complicated.

motherhood has informed much of my adult life. perhaps only for certain seasons, like now, in which i find myself slightly sleep deprived with an achy back. in other seasons, it was my friends: long talks into the night, walking to the grocery store in the snow, or crying through movies. those places where the air is actually thin and as the celts believed, the divine peeks through. most days, being awake to the vast needs of marginalized people is more than enough to inform my life.

and whether or not i like it, pain informs much of my life and the lives of everyone i know. and humans have a great capacity for running away from pain, from avoiding anything that we see as negative.

as i thought about what informs my life today, i realized that even after all this time, i am prone to try and avoid pain. maybe i always will try. but now, i can see in my life, more than ever before, what beautiful and fierce works of art that are made when i allow pain to season and develop my life. the pain digs and carves inside me, and then those holes become cisterns and wells to be filled with divine compassion and love. compassion that otherwise would not exist.

on the days when i forget what those cisterns are for, i try to fill them with anything i can.

but today, i remember why they are there and their role of informing my life. and then i wait for each one to fill.

my boss swears that one day i will write a really good book. we’ll see. maybe by the time i am ready to write it, everyone’s cisterns will be old news.

bone tired and it is fall break, thank the laaawd.

not much more to say than that, really.

well, i’m am extrovert, since when did not having anything to say stop me from talking?

here is one thing to note: whenever life feels most out of control, it is good to notice what you want to do in the middle of said out of control moment.

somedays, i remember to breathe deeply in and out through my nose, as my yoga teacher is always saying.

somedays, i repress the urge to kick and scream and yell.

somedays, i don’t repress the urge.

maybe for today, it is enough to live and let live, proverbially and physically.

learning to love

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