10/08/2012

blue sky monday

It's Monday. I spent some time outside in a patch of sun, sipping tea and thinking thoughts and admiring the blue sky, in an attempt to pull myself together for this new week. I'm not tired, exactly, but I'm not rested either. I could use a vacation. Someplace quiet and beautiful. With maids and cooks and someone to bring me a cup of tea or a glass of wine depending on the hour... Apparently, I want to vacation at Downton Abbey.

Life is full these days, so I don't forsee much whitespace in the near future. I need to find my rest in the midst of housework and doctor visits and getting the oil changed and meeting deadlines and paying bills and planning events and loving my people...

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The word we use a lot to describe the peaceful equilibrium we desire is "balance." We want to have it all, but in moderation, and all things in balance. But I don't think that's how life really works. Sometimes we have too much of everything all at once. Or nothing. Or the wrong things. And there is not enough time to fit it all in. There just isn't. To do everything we want we need longer days and stronger bodies and more years. Shoot. Just think of the books that I won't be able to get to in this lifetime.

Life is organic and mysterious and messy and beautiful and terrible and chaotic. Period. Life isn't stable or steady. It is a wild, rushing thing.

These days balance in life seems less like steady, orderly moderation, and more like surfing. Life comes at me in crazy waves. Huge waves that come in fast, and I have to paddle!paddle!paddle! to catch one just right, pop up, and bend and shift in response to the roaring power beneath my board. I can't control any of that power. Life just happens. And keeps happening! But I can train hard and know myself and my center of gravity and learn to read the waves and (try to) ride them instead of getting pummeled.

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The last decade or so I've practiced "surfing" by learning to approach life more in terms of routines and rhythms and seasons and less in terms of deadlines, schedules, and "having it all". I am learning to evaluate my life on a regular basis and add and subtract things as needed.

This is hard for me. Saying "no" and "not right now" is not my default. I love all the things!



And it's gotten even more complex, now that I've got a surfing partner. Now it's the ebb and flow and wild rush of three lives: his, mine, and ours. We work hard to listen and discern what is needed and say yes and no to things accordingly. Sometimes what is needed is to invite someone to dinner; and sometimes what is needed is to hunker down and take a nap. We talk a lot about simplicity in regards to money, stuff, and time. We create routines for housework and administrative tasks and food preparation. And then we test and tweak and adjust as each season brings new considerations.

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I may spend a bit of time writing through what we do and where we're at and why. This may be boring or interesting. Meanwhile, this is what the sky looks like today above my house.


2 comments:

  1. "But I don't think that's how life really works." I wish it did. It kind of bugs me that it doesn't. I struggle with routine...hate it actually. Whenever I'm out of it for long, though, I'm a mess and have to begin again.

    I like your blue sky.

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  2. Me too. I crave peace and order, but I flail with routines. Then, surrounded by the wreckage of the hurricane, I have to go back to basics. Again and again, I sit down, "OK. A good day starts the night before. What do I need to do the night before, so that the day can get off to a smooth start." I actually make myself star charts sometimes. I am 6.

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