Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Grow or Do not grow

what are the chances you'd be comfortable making the choice not to grow? what are the chances? what is your comfort level with that one?

All over the interwebs, and because it is spring, all over the whole entire world around me, there are signs and discussions of change and growth and bloom and grow, bloom and grow forever...
you get me some adelweiss?  yes?
I'm always telling my kids to eat their foods in order to grow.  AM I eating the foods I need to grow? how much asparagus can a girl handle? salmon? pbbt. how many cookies? hm. ohm.
I'm moving fast and furious today because I am very impatiently awaiting the arrival of a new sewing machine from a nice brown ups man.  uniform, skin unknown at this point. . .

so excited. can't believe I'm getting a new sewing machine, so so crazy excited.  I have projects waiting... pulsating with desire to get finished... (the delivery man? turns out it was one of the very in-between colors of skin, so i count him as both and all... )

grow grow grow.
what stops that from being the primary mandate? when we have babies we just want them to survive and thrive and grow grow grow.  why aren't we demanding the same for ourselves? and when we do wake up and demand some re-growth, what does that look like?
If i am blind, let me see Lord, let me see.  If I am stunted, let me breathe deep and send out a new shoot.  If the rut is too deep, let me have tools... I found a book on the kitchen table this morning for kids, a book about accepting change, it was funny, I'll read it to my kids this afternoon.  when the girl thinks big, her hair changes color... a good change, a perspective change on 'change'... I have read lately so many things on growth, change, choice, discomfort and where it springs from... too many choices? denial of the reality that 'we are okay', 'we have plenty', 'we are provided for'... ?

there is an entire corner of my side yard which is left to the butterflies, it is just now beginning its push through the hay of last year's corner, getting ready to burst (in a literal fashion) and team with life.  These guys are not dithering about whether or not to grow.  They are on with it.
I want to be on their team.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Mandelstam loves Khlebnikov

its true. one man loved another, it was poetry, literally, that brought them together in a lopsided fashion... in that one more clearly loved the work of another than viceversa.  It is wonderful to see a clear love, unfettered by shoulds and coulds and just unclouded by anything but enthusiasm for a turn of phrase...

As a grownup it somehow seems more difficult to find our unbridled enthusiasm.  This morning, my 4 and I did painting and playdough and all I could muster was a few 'ooh's and really, i was just trying to delay/avoid/deny the painful power of the television and maintain a quiet sanity....  The power of the television is that it, in fact, allows me to read during the daylight hours, or journal, or meditate, (although I have been SO slackful there, I consistently count the minutes at Quaker Meeting as meditative achievement, and I'm not at all clear that the worship of the Light is the same as meditation, and none can be. but I count it. COUNTED. )

I used my time to make 'peas'... a therapy of the fingers and the brain and the responses to the kid were sortof on autopilot., although the peas became fodder for some sort of creature that ate them was all about supply and demand, i suppose.
  I really do feel shock and awe and amazement for parents who have just one, as I could never be the bearer of that much responsibility.  I know that no matter how pathetic a parent I may be, I am showing an adult interaction and I am relying desparately on the imminent arrival of the sibling from the bus. there are these days, after all.  there are times I am more engaged.
The 'work' of entertaining, challenging, growing these young ones is not difficult, it really isn't... but it doesn't bring out my wild enthusiasms and sometimes that can be a strain on my spirit.

what do you do on these days, in these times? how do you restore? what do you do with your kids when you need to replenish?

Thursday, March 22, 2012


although i don't think thats what its called. Its an Abbey, full of sisters who say masses and garden in habits and make their own food, and pray, pray, pray...  and since I am up at an otherworldly early hour, with a headache and a belly ache, I thought I would share what causes a different kind of ache.  I can't even believe that such a thing exists anymore, that there are women and men in the world who decide to make their role in the world be one of devotion and ceaseless prayer to god.  Talk about radicals.
 I'll be there for four days in May. just me. HubsJ will hold the fort while I am gone, doing homework (hopefully) and dinners and lunches, laundry (not likely) and bedtimes, as well as getting kids to school on time.  I imagine he'll need a retreat when I return.
I will share meals and masses with the Sisters and take a part in their workload, as they will allow and as I can be helpful. I just got their letter yesterday, as they have no phone or internet. The letter itself caused me a little bit of anxiety, as I'd been waiting for a response to my request for a week or so... and the reality of acceptance brought a flood of worry.  'won't they see me as unfit?'  'its so far away, they don't even have a phone!'... 'the scheduling of this is going to drive me mad'... 'the boys, how can i take care of them if i'm not even here?!'... 'its really only three days because of all the driving' ... 'the driving'...
Its like the daily multitask, its too much, it gets in the way of doing things simply, and completely... the worry is the daily, and needs to be left behind in this particular case, as I go to have my monastic experience in the world, for the first time at least. 
I had to write them asking for guest quarters, letting them know why I wanted to come.  It was an awesome letter to write, actually, in that it was AWEsome to sit and think and attempt to be direct about what it is that I am looking for... its not just retreat and solitude that I am craving.  Its not a busy yoga week, not a week alone in the mountains.  I want to be in a place with a focus, a Godly focus, with other people who are doing their own Godly focus.  I want to be open for listening, ironic for the almost deaf, but true.  I would like to hear what Gd wants of me, beyond this mothering game, which is a very big game, but I think there is more to it... but I look forward to finding out, or not, as the case may be...
just call me A whill' o the whisp, a clown....ask me how to hold a moonbean in my hand....  and i'll be all set...

Friday, March 16, 2012


Five Minute Friday: THere's a writing prompt and a directive to write for five minutes straight, without stopping and i say, without editing ... so here goes:


I think you can't be brave unless you are afraid -- its something my boys and I have discussed many times, because they are full of the grapple with their own understandings of the world.  At 6 and 4 the things that scare them are radically different, and their ways of expressing the fear as well.  The 6 will run from the room at the first hint of ominous music, he will react with rage at his brother's insistence that 4+4 is 9.  His understanding of the world seems both SO literal, and SO unformed. It shakes his world that he has no tools to approach the irrationality of the 4, it shakes his world that the numbers in fact, might not add up.   What to do? How to face the world when you just can't be certain....?  How do I address this in a tiny boy looking for answers? 
Be brave.  Learn.  Ask questions.  Listen.  Have faith that it'll work out.  it will .

The 4 is still in struggle with the basics and seems to have very very little fear.  He will need to be brave later on, right now, he is fearless.  

I also need to heed my own advice, as it is...

Be Brave.  Learn.  Ask questions.  Listen.  Have Faith.  

still working on it...


Thursday, March 15, 2012


Seriously? - my kids have both taken that question to new and dizzyingly high heights lately. I hear it all the time, ALL the time... My every action is taken to new and doubtful extremes.  Seriously, Mom, you're going to the grocery store? Seriously? 
Seriously, its quiet time?! seriously?
From the six year old, its not so funny, as I am clearly doing things that are utterly absurd. the scorn, oh the scorn.  From the four year old, it is hysterical, because it is applied so willy-nilly to everyday situations.  Seriously? apple juice? seriously?

who is that challenge for anyhow? God? Seriously?

Today marks Day 10 of sickness in the house.  SERIOUSLY?! The youngest is down with a fever for the third straight day, low grade, nothing worrisome, but more of the irksome sort.  If its not a raging battle for healthy body, why this low level infection... why isn't it clearing itself out?  On the plus side, he is napping for the first time in two years, which is a very significant plus.  Today, for instance, I have showered.. .and believe me, it was a desperate need.  I think it has been at least a week. at least. 
and I am radically out of touch.  I haven't seen any adults, except those related by marriage or blood, and I have managed to infect all of those.  Its like 28 Days, only we have the look of zombies now, at the start, without the blood eating aspects, of course. 

Soon, I will have space to think again, I can feel it coming.  I get to go to therapy with ChakraCarol next week, so it dangles out there that I might even be challenged at some point soon.  Its not that mothering the sick is easy, it certainly IS a challenge, but it is one for which I have become imminently suited, which I can do under the most disgusting of conditions...  it is good to have a challenge of the emotions, a challenge of the intellect, a challenge of the body... to pick up, to put down...
I have about 10 more minutes of nap, I am going to cut some fabric.  or maybe make some tea, we'll see what happens when I get my butt off the chair.

wish us health.  i'll do the same for you.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Crazy cakes.

The last week was so damn long, I feel like I've been on the rack.  Remember Westley?  thats me, but I have no Andre to move me about.  I am doing most of my pitiful parenting while sitting down or lying down.  We are not all on board the sleep train these days, or rather, the unwitting re-assumption of the family bed is all over the place, literally.  Boys on the shoulder, the toes... you would be amazed by how many limbs two gangly boys can have at 4 AM. 

Finally, I think the 6 is good to go, he's got school for a full day today, and I cancelled his afterschool programming, so he should be home earlier than usual and ready to crash if need be. . . the 4 will go to school today for the first time in a week and a half, because I will tie him to the teacher if need be.  Because this mother has a plan to go to a beach alone and fall asleep in the car while looking at waves... and that plan was given to me by God. 

Thursday, March 8, 2012

I am alive and have one clean towel left.

After four days of being home with the two boys, after two days of the entire parental unit being almost undone by their own illness... after one day of the Motha being on the floor or crawling for most of the day, after one day of HubsJ pulling through his own tough day to come home to care, and one day of HubsJ staying home entirely to care.... this is the largest clear space left in the house.                                             Today the sun rises.  The 6 could have gone back to school today but started to quibble and its just too vague, his health and my tolerance for whining and so I kept him home. . . tomorrow is a half day so he'll make it through a short day and be ready to return fulltime on Monday, when life will begin again.  I swear, it will. 
In the photo is the sunlight and the flower showing itself is the largest detail in the field, and I like it alot... this peak of pretty in the midst of so much masculine.  You can almost forget the toys, and I like to do that fairly frequently, and especially today. We are setup for growth, for spring, over here.  We have been purged and we look forward to the replenishing...
Happy Easter, anyone? have i missed it? oye.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Sick days

This is me, on the floor, one foot in the bathroom, the eyes on the crowds doing their own vomitations to the Gods . 
Just wanted you to know. Peace out.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Lenten shadows

I'm all done with my work for the day. its 9:17 am.... I have plugged my youngest into a MickeyMouse whorehouse on the television already, done my tea, done my sewing for the day.  The large gaping maw of the day is before me. 
Lent has become a really lovely time for me in the past few years. It is the beginning of the muddy spring of growth and the interchange of winter for spring is always dramatic, chilly, wet, warm, wild and windy and its just remarkable to be able to choose to go out in it or stay in from it and watch it from a space of vaguely nordic pleasure.  Do you know that feeling? the distance from the heart of things while being utterly immersed in the beauty of it all? minimal wildness?
I break from facebook and friends and the gossip of it all, and it gives me 'maw' days aplenty.. and I never know what it was I found there in the first place. 

For my 'complaining', I like the wideopen pendulous day, for its mystery, for its deepening shadows, the possibility that is still ripe and waiting.  Sometimes I read Biblical Scripture, sometimes a novel, sometimes I journal and pick up a card to ponder.  Occasionally I forget that there is a child in the house, because I am so engaged with my own self.  and that? miraculous.

ah. welcome to my day.