This is one of my favorite prompts during December Reverb. Like most of us, I have a gazillion photos on my phone that I rarely go back and take a look at. This morning I perused every picture my lens captured this past year, experiencing the joy and serenity, humor and beauty of each moment all over again. Such a gift. Without further ado, here are a few of my favorite selfies from 2015:
The clock creeps up on 5 p.m. The sky hangs gray and wintry outside the window. I’m sitting at my mirrored desk in the small alcove of my bedroom. When my older daughter needed her own room two years ago, I ceded my office to her, although it was never really an office. Work went on there, yes, but not officey work. More like creative and contemplative work, wondering work, the work of collecting and sifting and building; quiet work, whirling-words-in-my-head work and then when I needed and wanted, the fraught and delicious work of writing.
Now everything that is mine and meaningful from that room sits atop this desk, in the single drawer, pinned to the large cushioned board hanging on the wall. I am tap, tap, tapping on the keyboard, desperate to use my words, see them appear on the screen, before I have to go downstairs to make dinner. My three girls are endlessly hungry from 4 p.m. on. I have learned to serve dinner early, but that means a few minutes less for me, words flying. Continue reading “Letting Go, Creating Space and Wondering What’s For Dinner”→
It is the day before Thanksgiving and I am driving. The road flattens and curves like a lazy river. Farmland on both sides, one planted in neat little rows, the other dotted with grazing, black cows. The car is stuffed. Duffle bags and pillows, snow gear, three kids and a dog, enough groceries for a month even though we’re only staying four days. We are on the road to Tahoe.
The hour and a half drive to the halfway point is taking double that. Holiday traffic. Everyone running into one another, tapping each other’s bumpers all in a hurry. Cars pull over on the shoulder. We all stop to stare then carry on. Neil Young sings Harvest Moon and I turn it up, hoping the girls will take notice, soak it in. Appreciate. “Because I’m still in love with you, on this harvest moon…”Continue reading “The Right Side of Grateful”→
The Little One wakes in the middle of the night. “Mama, I’m scared,” she says. She is pressed to the side of my bed, her face inches from mine. I can just make out her tousled outline in the gloom. She is clutching her Elephant Lovey, wide-awake, restless, needing. I am sluggish and groggy, but not entirely asleep.
This is the fourth night out of the last five she’s come padding down the hallway before daylight. After the second night, my body reset itself to match her wonky circadian rhythm and I stir just seconds before I hear her door open. Each night before I click my light off, I plead to whatever divine power is in charge of slumber: “Please let her stay in her bed tonight.” My prayer is for me as much as it is for her. Once again my petition has been denied. Continue reading “Lists and Prayers”→
The end of any given year is busy, no question. There are loose ends to be tied, emotional overwhelm and physical exhaustion — Shopping! Parties! Cooking! There is family to visit or host and gifts to be given and received. There are copious amounts of comfort food, sweets and warm-your-stomach drinks. There is merry, happy and joyous to embrace and also, for me, the possibility of falling under Melancholy’s gentle, blue spell.
When life gets chaotic for me, I tend to move my writing to the back-burner. I take on more tangible, simpler tasks that “need” to be done, like wrapping presents, making beds (oh, how I love a made bed), plumping pillows and replenishing the soap dispensers. This sort of detachment is usually how I deal with the last few weeks of the year, willing January 1 to come as quickly as possible. Last year, though, I did not abandon myself or my words. As difficult and tangly and not-pretty as it was, I dove into writing as much as possible. I started by signing up for Kat McNally’sReverb December Daily Prompt. Continue reading “Writing My Way Through the End of the Year”→