Friday, November 11, 2011

Still lifes

I feel like I'm breathing again for the first time since May. Does that make any kind of sense? Like I've been holding my breath-- too forward driven to pause and look around and think anything deeper than and next...

This has been a common theme lately around this blog, I know. But as I've begun to unwind, and unwind, and unwind, it seems I was a lot more wound-up than I'd realized. 

Just when I think I've relaxed as far as I can go, I go further.

The whole long gorgeous summer is a blur. It feels-- though it fortunately doesn't look-- like we moved in yesterday. I try to be mindful, I try to be present in the moment, but suffice to say this year I flunked that lesson, big time.

Really, I don't think it could've been any other way. It was a lot to take in. A lot to process. A lot to accomplish. 

A big, heady transition. The changing and adjusting has finally slowed to a sensible pace. I can notice things just for the sake of noticing. Genevieve in the early afternoon sunshine. Apples in a McCoy bowl. A basket of goodies waiting to be carried in from the car. 

Part of it is the season. Every year since I started doing home food preservation, I've come to savor winter. My mother-- and most of the greater Northeast-- loathes winter, and understandably so. Windows creak. Ice-dams conspire. Drafts occupy. Cabin fever sets in. Heating oil bills burgeon. There's a lot to resent, but there's a lot to love about taking a break from outside to focus on in. Summer is too many balloons to hold onto, so you let some go: laundry, clean sheets, dust bunnies, homemade bread. You feel guilty, like you should be able to handle it all, but come on: sunshine! flowers! garden! It's too good, and so fleeting, and you leave your messy house and soak it in.

Winter, life starts to feel manageable again. No more garden means time for baking bread. No more raking, no more mowing, no more flower gardening. It feels good. It's easy to ace life, and that's a satisfying feeling.

I'm not saying that visions of carrot seedlings haven't already begun to dance in my head. They have. (Groan.) I'm just saying I'm going to remind myself to savor the simplicity of winter, the stillness, the ease of being mindful and in the moment.

I hope you will, too.

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Becky said...

Beautifully worded.

Kristina Strain said...

Thank you, Becky.

katherine mary said...

simplicity of winter. so perfect.

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