Tuesday, 23 April 2013
I sit in my tiny garden on the first day of the year that makes me truly believe, again, in summer. I'm here because I have not been well, with relatively minor troubles. Unlucky that, lucky this. I sit surrounded by growth, the first new shoots of green almost visibly pushing forth. I am enveloped by birdsong, insects hum, buzz in stereo. The sun warms my skin; almost too warm, I shall soon have to take shelter indoors. No matter, it is no hardship, to retire and gaze upon this.
All this, that presents itself so boldly, proudly, gleefully. As if saying look! Look upon me, and be glad, for it is spring! As if admonishing me with her unrelenting drive forward into summer, autumn, winter, and again, spring, to leave my backward glances, forget the long, hard days that have passed, shed all melancholy and frolic forth. Reborn, devoid of memory. Renewed, blind to everything but this magnificent moment in the sunshine.
It is magnificent, so I try. I look and I am glad. I try because this is the thing, the beautiful, wondrous, maddening thing - hope springs again. It always does.
Tuesday, 26 March 2013
Death surrounds me. It presses in on all sides, overshadowed by grief, and loss, and mourning. It suffocates with the heavy weight of unending grey skies, weeping unrelenting tears of sleet and rain and ice; a winter of discontent that will not ease, a dis-ease that declaims this shall not pass.
I am sorry for all our losses, and they are manifold.
But pass it must, and spring, oh! spring! will come, yes it will, it must, but how it pains me that I cannot will it into being try as I might, and most mightily have I tried.
I yield before it. There is nothing else to be done.
I yield, but I am ready, oh so ready for light, and growth, and renewal, and life, and hope of better things. I submit, but I am ready for spring.
Monday, 25 March 2013
Thursday, 28 February 2013
There are a few things I can finally, properly pull off now that I am in my thirties, that previously always made me feel like a little girl raiding her mother's wardrobe to play at dressing up. Lacy underpinnings, silk in its many guises, heady perfumes - all things redolent of womanliness.
Birthdays in my twenties always felt like counting up to being truly grown up. Now they carry with them a faint whiff of mortality, the tiniest hint of a sickly sweet smell of decay that I'd prefer not to acknowledge. The sandalwood and bergamot made necessary, perhaps.
Even so. There is no doubting that these days are my prime.
Wednesday, 9 January 2013
I was feeling more than a tad overwhelmed by work for a while there. And on top of that, guilty for feeling that way.
If you were really cut out for this, if this was really what you were meant to be doing, it would feel easy. It could be like play. In fact, if you were doing it right, it should feel like play.
Could, would, should. Banish the bastards, all of them.
If even masters of the craft say that this is bound to exhaust you before it starts to feel nourishing, who am I to believe that it would feel differently for me? But still, omnipotent narcissism of the relative beginner, somehow I did. And yet I was exhausted, and overwhelmed by the exhaustion, and a bit panicked by the idea of having to function in the face of all that exhaustion and overwhelm. Until one morning I just... wasn't.
What if I just accepted that this is how it is going to feel? That it is what it is and it is tiring as hell. What if I just knew that every day I'd feel wrecked, and I just shrugged and got on with whatever I could manage anyway?
A friend with toddler twins suggested that might help. Friends with toddler twins are experts about exhaustion and overwhelm and acceptance and getting on in the face of those, as it turns out.
It turns out that the problem is the joy, as Zadie Smith so helpfully elucidated. Maybe one day the emotional landscape of my days will start to look just a little more manageably humdrum, at which point the experience may yield rather more ordinary pleasure and rather less bone weariness. Maybe. That might be nice.
Then again, maybe the day that happens is the day I'd need to retire.
Thursday, 3 January 2013
I have spent the day yearning for my husband.
It is, perhaps, an odd way to spend one's fourth wedding anniversary, but back to work we had to go, and so we parted. Needs must. I then faced a day knowing that we wouldn't be seeing each other in the evening for the first time in almost three weeks. Cue acute husband withdrawal, a rather painful and distressing condition. Unsurprisingly, today sucked.
There are many things in my life which remain less than ideal, and I'm absolutely sure that is how it shall continue. That's simply life, isn't it. You can have everything, just not all at the same time: wisdom I've heard from several sources, most recently this inspiring lady. It seems to me, though, that the situation of loving (and, more to the point, liking) the man you married far more four years later than you did on the day you married him, so that you mourn his absence of a single night so acutely, is a pretty decent unsatisfactory position in which to be. Cheers to that.
Happy anniversary, my darling. May this life we're weaving between us continue to grow ever more splendid. Even when it sucks.
Monday, 31 December 2012
I am not going to lie, I'm pretty thrilled to see the back of 2012. It's been a year.
Of course, there's been good, so very much of it, really significant and huge achievements to be celebrated and enjoyed anew in their remembering. And actually, and ever so fortunately, most of the not-so-good that there was has ultimately worked its way through into something of meaning at least, if still not of pleasure. We have been blessed, and I know it, and I am grateful. But oh! the change, the personal growth, the emotional turbulence, the endless brain ache... Frankly, it's been wearying. Even reflecting on it is exhausting. 2012, you were ultimately very good to us, but by god, you've worn me right out.
So, onward, to 2013. With all the trappings of the past year shed, I feel ready to greet it.
Cutting off the relaxed ends of my hair this morning felt symbolic of how I hope to face this new year. I'm just so tired of being anything other than who I truly am, although, of course, it took all the exhausting emotional work of this year to make a start in realising who the heck that is to begin with. And I'm tired of trying to be "good", or to do the "right" thing, all according to these standards held up in my mind as some imagined ideal of perfection for which I should be aiming. Fuck that. No wonder I've been so tired.
This coming year I'm aiming to be... well, bald. Literally, yes, but metaphorically too. Authentic. Genuine. Honest and bold and true. Present, for every single moment of it. Grounded. Stripped bare, real. It's simply too tiring to try for anything else, and goodness knows there is much to be done. So much being. There are countless moments of life to be lived this coming year. So many opportunities in which to be newly me.
Hello, 2013. Welcome. I think I'm going to love living the fuck out of you.