Sunday, March 19, 2017

when it all stands still.

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The longer days have been a gift. It is such a happy thing to be able to walk outside at 4:30 in the afternoon and not be met with total darkness. And the sun here has been a welcome change. Now I just ache for the warmer days. It’ll be such a relief when I no longer have to wear layer after layer just to feel remotely comfortable, or sink into a bathtub to try and take the chill away.

But I must admit that when I actively choose to have a positive attitude, it’s amazing how quickly the small things add up into big things, and my entire perspective can shift. A moment to acknowledge a bloom forcing its way through the packed earth. The sun streaming through the window. An unexpected latte from Jeffrey. Late night TV marathons and Thai food. A new plant for the house. Sitting here and giving myself the time to write about precisely nothing. It all feels so good.

Sometimes it feels good to have nothing of real note to write about. Sometimes it's enough just to talk about a shift in the weather and to share some pictures from a spontaneous trip to the coast. Sometimes it feels right that my only dream for the foreseeable future is to have a tan of some kind.

To be at peace is a special kind of feeling. To close my eyes and feel that my insides are still. That I am completely whole as I am right now. And even when I change tomorrow, I will still be whole. I had forgotten that the stillness can feel so incredibly good. My brain hardly ever allows for it, but this reprieve; I will soak it all in.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

thoughts for a sunday.

It's 11:37 AM on a Sunday. It's 40ยบ outside, but I've forced our window open and I'm parked in front of the (nearly) unbearable chill. Because it's the beginning of March and for most of my life that's been open window weather. Woody's snout has made its way to the stream of cold air and he has fully leaned into it, eyes closed, fur blowing. There's a cupcake next to me and now he's hopped up (still in the perfect position to get the breeze) on the couch, dutifully ignoring said cupcake (because cupcakes aren't for dogs and he somehow knows it?).

I called my mom from this morning's walk and our hour-long conversation felt like 15 minutes (as it often does). And even though I'd like nothing more than for us to be in the same city again, we've gotten pretty good at the long distance thing, and I'm a little bit proud of that because I didn't always think I'd get there.

The dishes are washed and the bed is made and the apartment is tidy. And I'm here. On this couch. Writing about practically nothing because sometimes that feels good.

For the first time in a long time, I actually feel my age. It's weird to be 27 and to think about what I thought my life would be like by the time I got here. It probably involved children. It probably involved a career that made my heart sing. It probably involved many things I don't have. And coming to terms with that can be a little strange. The more adult I become, the more I realize that I know almost nothing about actually being an adult. And the more I realize that that's probably what it means to be an adult. We're all just mostly walking through the dark, looking for the light switch, and only finding it about 50% of the time (if we're lucky).

I just read this article about a woman who has cancer and is hoping her (phenomenal-sounding) husband will find love again after she's gone. It's a sad article, but it's also pretty dang beautiful. Why is it that we shy away from writing beautiful things about our partners? I can't tell you the number of times I've written something lovely and truthful about Jeffrey and then hit delete. Better not gush, I tell myself. No one wants to hear about that, I tell myself. But, why not? Jeffrey is a truly delightful person. And he chose to marry me. Me! From now on, I'm just gonna go ahead and hit publish when I feel compelled. Love is worth celebrating. And real, lasting love? It's rare and it's precious. It deserves to be memorialized (along with all the times I've written about the sad things while I wallowed in the depths of my own despair).

Sometimes I'd like to turn the worrying part of my brain off. It is so exhausting. Why is it that I can know that worrying serves me no purpose, and I just do it anyway? How many times have I worried and nothing has ever come from it (the answer is almost every time.)? How many worry stones have been made completely smooth by my mind? I recently started going to a Pilates class once a week. My instructor is also an energy healer. Energy work is something I've never really given much thought to, but she and I were talking about it anyway and she was like, "I feel like you're carrying some burdens for other people, and the problem is that they decided to set them down long ago, but you're still holding onto them." And it was like she smacked me in the face with my own truth because if that isn't just exactly who I am. But why am I doing it?

The truth is that for all the times I feel like I'm falling apart, there's a time where I feel like I've just grasped a moment of clarity, and I'm so aware of it. I want to imprint it in my mind so that I never forget the true fortune I feel when the door bursts wide open and for one single moment, I glimpse something so sharply and so clearly it can almost take my breath away. I can feel myself growing and changing and it makes me feel like I'm doing the work that needs to be done. There was a time in my life where I believed that progress was meant to be linear. And I can't tell you how thankful I am to now know that that just is not even a little bit true. My progress isn't linear in any sense of the word and isn't that the whole point? The twists and turns? That's where the beauty is. The real, painful, heartbreaking, heart-mending, full, whole beauty.
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