A Cup of Kindness Yet
My mother returned to the frozen north yesterday. And immediately the temperature here shot up to the mid-seventies, after two weeks of mostly just above and just below freezing temperatures. It's always that way. Cold fronts seem to stowaway in her luggage when she comes.
Still, her visit was lovely in every way except that it flew by much too fast, and that she had to leave without knowing when we will see each other again. Maybe my ship will come sailing in this year and float us all to Newfoundland for next Christmas.
Her time with us confirmed what I've long suspected: it takes three pairs of grown up hands to keep a household with three children running smoothly. And that laundry is the centrifugal force by which it all spins. Mom began folding clothes before her first cup of tea had steeped. It delivered some kind of heimlich maneuver to the domestic chi. Things have been flowing smoothly ever since, and I am hoping to keep it that way. Whereas normally I would be writing this still in my robe, surrounded by breakfast dishes, this midmorning finds me fully dressed, seated at a clean table, ohm-ing to the transcendental vibration of my kitchen appliances. I don't know if I can actually write under these conditions, but we'll see.
I came out of the Old Year happy just to have survived. 2007 knocked me around in ways I haven't been ready to share, and I'm not feeling up to making big resolutions. In fact, I think the New Year needs to make some resolutions to me. Be sweet to me, 2008. Sweep me off my feet. Make me feel like it's okay to dream big dreams again. Then maybe I can declare some grand intentions of my own.
Until then, I'm keeping it very simple. Just four little things.
- One, I'd like to write in a more disciplined way this year. Like fully dressed, and mostly when the kids are in school, so that don't grow up with an aversion to the creative arts, borne of me snapping at them to make their own damn breakfasts.
- Two, I'd like to move my body more. I've gotten very sedentary in direct proportion to the energy I've put into writing, and it shows.
- Three, I want to get to know my readers a little better. I plan to begin going back through comments and email of the past couple of years and clicking through to the pages of those who keep blogs themselves. This is arguably in conflict with mini-resolution 3.(b), which is to spend less non-productive time online in general, but as long as I am indulging, better to do it with friends.
- Four, to recover book reading for pleasure. This is harder than you'd think for a writer, because if it's any good, it has to make you a little (or a lot) jealous, and if it's crap, it makes you cynical. But good literature is an essential nutrient in the synthesis of good writing, and I've noticed recently a feeling of ketosis setting in. I can't run on empty much longer. I've started with a book of short stories by Ellen Gilchrist and it's good, satisfying stuff.
That's it, really. It's good to be back here. I'm glad you're here, too. More very soon.
Labels: the writing life