These are the things I’ve written lately, or said out loud, that I have liked, and liked a lot.
My work life is a pile of feathers.
You can’t actually hold on to anything. Thats the illusion. The struggle is in wanting to hold on, when you can’t, even though it hurts. You can’t. You’re grasping at waves. Whatever it is, its already gone.
My creative life is in a cave in the cliff wall, somehow managing to be dry and warm despite being just meters from a stormy sea.
When I am old, I want the kitchen table to remind me of my children, for my memory to roll easily through the past.
Pick up the phone before it is too late. Call the elderly man who reminds you of your loss. Call his familiar voice and hear an old familiar story. Let it be so. Suck in the things he needs to apologize for and grovel for. He will not and doesn’t need to know he should. It makes no difference now. It just doesn’t. When you imagine all the perfect things said, said to perfection, it still just doesn’t matter, doesn’t change a thing, and somehow, the fact that I am carrying this, even as a fleeting thought, is the image of absurdity.
There it is. A list of somethings rather than nothings. A pile of feathers indeed.
Its construction time here at the old Blossom Manor. Which means, honestly, a lot of de-construction and falling down. (me, yes, definitely me, and them, the inanimate machines of necessity.) I’ve been here long enough that everything that can break is experiencing its last moments of glorious bursting joyful sunray, as they run towards the light. Arms wild, they run into the flaming sun.
Currently on fire:
hot water heater.
Hmm. Yeah, the upstairs shower isn’t really working well, but it has something to do with the heater, i think, so its a subpar emerging problem, not worthy of a bullet. plus, there is a second shower, so if it needs abandoning, so be it. and water shut offs in a house with no filtration system do in fact, cause their own set of new events. Yeah, that’s it.
I mean, unless you want to peel back another layer and tell me my house needs painting. or a pesky water filtration unit. In which case, I point you to the houses in Appalachia that are not painted, or filtered, and are still standing, just moderately askew. So there. pure vanity has no place, currently.
My living room is full of tools because the handyman stores them here when he is not working. Yes, that is the relationship. Tools live here.
There’s a plumber making his way to my front door with a bill in hand, right now. It is a small airplane carrying a tank of water to dump on the heaviest flame. But darling, this one will bring a shower that is warm.
I almost decided to leave the soap in my hair this morning, the cold was so cold. I could hear my scalp crying, and feel my brain trying to push the scalp away, to keep warm and working. (debatable if my brain is working today, very debatable.)
I had an in-person interview today though, to take on another garden project, which I will in fact, start tomorrow. So I needed soap out, to not terrify a lovely garden lady. And now, for tomorrow, I will be able to (probably) take a hot bath to soothe my muscles after such work.
I’m feeling very boring today. Plumbing on my mind. I’m even wondering how to finance a water filtration system, out loud even. Yeah, i’m not impressed either. Good lord.
Its the small things that make life okay, its always the small things. I’m talking about writing, and I’m adding it to my days. I’ve read three books in the past two weeks. Small is big. Despite all my fully mature tactics of denial and procrastination, I am ready to start the next season of work, both internal and external. We have space, we have time, and we have value. we have third person self-referencing, which is, yes, concerning. But my flowers are still incredibly beautiful, and I paid for a water heater without a credit card. and the book cover now waiting for me is beautifully stroked by a paintbrush. So these are good days.
Good days, my loves.
Go out and recklessly love. for the hell of it. what are we saving it for?
I’m not good at transition, I never ever have been. And here we are, in transition. again.
I went from working every second of every day and feeling like an asshole absent parent to having all the kids in school and three days off a week, in which i am supposed to fit all the writing and editing in forevermore.
i’m okay, but not okay. i’m not happy with that blank space in my income, in my adventure, anymore, as much as last year was still all tentative about schools and kids and quarantines, this year does not feel that way. So I’m a bit at a loss, and a bit afraid.
I can pivot and turn and react on a dime, yes.
but when it is an ACTUAL dime? more challenging.
i’m tidying. i’m writing every day so far. i’m reading more. these are the things that are necessary for me when I transition back to work at home, they ground me and get me all ready to go sit in front of the screen. I find that the more I read, the more there is in my brain that opens portals to all that I have ever read, and felt, and I can find it again. the words spill, the gardens are remembered and I can see the jar of buttons for the wild source of story that it is.
It will be a short transition, this, into working too much again, or being torn between what is ‘work’ and what I can be distracted from, and complaints of a sort about chauffeuring kids. They aren’t real complaints anymore, as I see the end of this chapter of my life in the air before me. Just noticings. A habit of complaint, maybe, but no honest one. I see it in its last days now, and already know I will long for such simple time spent with my kids.
Its time for me to rocket off in search of another thing to tidy. I’m not ready to face the applications for jobs yet, its my least favorite part, though I can submit in a flurry fury once I am ready.
love you guys, see you soon.
I’ve had two offers of an ax, by the way, so it looks like i’ll have to save my fancy outfit and candles for some other event. Maybe I’ll chop the wood in it? Or maybe hold the candles up while my boys split? I’ll decide as I go.
One of the things i’ve learned from working with farmers, besides the fact that I’m not actually cut out to be an ACTUAL farmer, is that the seasons actually do follow that whole ‘official first day of… ‘ thing. As in, the weather will still be more warm than chilly until the end of the month (22nd?) and the cold will settle in afterwards. And then, the week that ‘winter’ starts, its going to be actually fucking cold.
And I’m not a pumpkin spice person, so I could probably not give less of a shit about all that. I’ll take the warm days and the cool nights forever and ever, amen.
Its been a while, and its ‘fall’ according to kids being back in school and my outdoor laboring jobs slowing down. I’m turning back to working from home, writing, editing, and the like. Well, i’m going to try damn hard. I’m pretty damn fearful I won’t make enough money and it’s still not enough to force me into some other line of work. not yet.
I’m good otherwise. I have the wood I need to get through the cold spell. Though, most of it is in the front yard, waiting to be split and THAT is waiting on me to go buy an ax. I want to memorialize this action somehow, like dress up in a loose and flowy gown with sparkles before I walk into the big box hardware store and purchase my ax. It is a once in a lifetime thing, and it should be special.
Maybe I’ll carry a lit candle.
I should bring my kids with me. Because I want them to have more core memories of me than just ‘lady who does laundry’ and ‘the boring house’ and ‘why can’t we go out to dinner?’ …. yes, i jest. we have a good time, they are sto damn funny. but goddamn. i do see this as a negative of the two-home family. the comparisons are nonstop, and i really do not do well when held up against ‘the weekend house’ and the laisse-faire. and i think i’ve misspelled that. and guess what? i’m not going to search it up or correct it. because i’d much rather have someone contact me about it and engage in a conversation. how bout that?
i’ve got to go soon, my new leaves in flip still include egg washing chores, and i’m off to wash dozens and dozens of them. While i wash, i do a lot of thinking about ‘dispatches from the cooped-up’. I do crack myself up.
my first baby had his last first day of school yesterday.
I’m in a large transition, to what? crone? to powerful woman in her late forties who is embarking upon a boat trip down a river? am i finally katherine hepburn? Do i learn how to run the boat? if only i had her trousers.
i spent most of the day trying to figure out what to do with myself. i had work at two, and the gaping maw of time was not my friend. i got too sweaty in the garden, i couldn’t tell if it was excessive humidity, excessive weed-angst, or a hot flash. i had a piece of cake. i watched godawful people on tv. i cried, i wept, i wondered if it is fear that was compelling me to tears or wonder. i thought about my baby as a baby. it all had little to do with the magic of the children. they are doing all that they are supposed to, living wildly and growing and stretching towards the sun. sunflowers.
the recognition, in me, of the changes, in me, the letting go of small threads of an identity which i’ve had for almost twenty years. (and hello, there are more kids at home so i have more years still) its just the beginning of an unravelling.
(and yes, i am more than curious about what becomes of this pile of thread. there is so much to be created, and in truth, it is where my upset lies. upset=turmoil, but not necessarily bad juju, you see?)
it is another stage of adulthood, and like menopause, its a bigger deal than i’d understood.
and so, today i woke to an empty house, as they are at their dad’s. and a rainstorm and a nervous dog, and a remembrance that there is a sleeping bag out on the clothesline. so be it. things are wet now.
i’ll dry out too, to a degree, but these days of mothering and being so central to the lives of other people, on such an immediate, all-consuming basis? they are changing, and the weave is loosening.