Oh no, an hour slipped by me. We inch closer to midnight, and the gears are just beginning to move. I spent too much time in front of the white page, trying to make the cursor stop blinking.
What to write? Oh, write what you know, they say so casually, as if it’s just that simple and obvious. What do I know? How huge is this question? Isn’t that what we are always trying to figure out? What do I know of this life? What have I gained here, what’s the reason for it all? Just write that.
Ha! Write the Great Big Point of Everything. The thing you have learned on this journey of domestic ordinariness that will stop the cursor from it’s winking state of readiness– and GO.
Okay. Maybe they don’t mean, write all you know. Maybe I’ll just write what I know today.
Today, I know that a picture of my brother smiling almost made me cry. If I could make a moment stay by sheer force of will, this one wouldn’t move an inch. How hard we’re holding on, now that we’ve got him.
What else do I know today?
I know that I should wear my hair down more often. I know that my five year old thinks I’m beautiful with my hair down, even if I’m in yoga pants and a boring shirt and don’t have makeup on. I know that the prettiest kind of pretty you can be is when you are doing it for the enjoyment of those who love you. That the prettiest pretty isn’t about being admired or lusted after or meeting the approval of the hungry, insatiable world. Maybe that’s the kind of pretty you don’t begin to understand until there are laugh lines to underscore the word. Until there are gray streaks to catch the light, or fuller curves to hug into. Maybe it’s the only kind of pretty that sticks.
I know that I need to sit and talk more often with a true friend for a few hours in a bookstore, in REAL LIFE. I need to recharge, to be genuine, to laugh and bare something of my soul to another human being. I know this because when I spent my evening doing this very thing with a dear friend, my spirit was buoyant as it hasn’t been in a long time. I’m working so hard on growing friendships in my life, and to be honest, sometimes I’m impatient. I want the doors to be opened already, and the walls to come down. But that takes time. So, to enjoy the company of a seasoned friend– well that is a rest for the weary soul! I will not wait so long again.
I know that I need to turn the radio off more often. I need to stop placing barricades to keep my mind from wandering. Maybe it’s society, the modern world, our growing unease of quiet and stillness. Whatever it is, when I forgot to turn on the radio in the car today, my mind meandered all over the place, suddenly free from mind numbing restraints. Ideas raced about like newborn colts in my head. I thought thoughts, all kinds of ’em. Dusty corners of my brain were shocked into activity. And this truly scared me. Because I didn’t know I’d been downsizing up there. And if I’m doing it, I’m betting you are, too. Life is too loud, and we can’t hear ourselves think anymore. So, that’s a thing I know today. I need to let it be quiet sometimes, so my thoughts have a chance to be heard.
The last thing I know today is that it’s my bedtime. Well past it. And I’ve learned all the things I can fit in for this day. Tomorrow, maybe I’ll know more, and it’ll be worth writing about.