Thursday, July 5, 2012

Traveling Altar

Today is America's birthday. She turns either 36, 48, 62 or 2036 years old. She hasn't yet decided.

The kids spent the whole day swimming while I mostly sat by the pool and drank sangria. If they play their cards right, I'll let them watch fireworks tonight (on TV).

I think that this will go down as my weirdest summer ever. My life feels so entirely shapeless right now. Suspended limbo. Moving from place to place, none of them home.

One by one, the pieces of my old life have been stripped away. It feels fated, because all the things that fell away were never really me. My life has become a tabula rasa again. I am a newborn. Some days it feels beautifully freeing. I am overcome with a sense of what's possible. Anything is possible. Other days I am terrified.

I keep making routines so I can give structure to my days. And then I have to pick up and move and those routines fall apart, so I make new ones. I was doing really well with my running and then that fell apart. My eating, too. I have succombed to full-on comfort eating.

I noticed the other day that I've gained weight. My clothes are fitting tighter. I've been walking around trying not to look at myself in mirrors. Instead I am making goals. I love making goals. I am re-writing my life.

The other night I had a dream. I was looking in the mirror and thinking I looked fat. But then I remembered that I was actually pregnant. I had forgotten I was pregnant! I suddenly liked my body. I was growing new life. I thought to myself: I better start taking my prenatals. Then I woke up.

I have a little altar set up by my bed (my traveling altar). I didn't take much with me when I left, but I wrapped up the pieces of my altar and tucked them in my bag. My goals are written on little scrolls of paper (the back of a cut up map) and placed in a small ceramic pot. I read them every day.




My kids also keep me sane. I love how kids live in the moment. It doesn't matter where they are or what is going on in the backdrop of their lives, they know how to create fun. They excel at fun. That is such a phenomenal skill -- to just be present and find joy in each moment. How is it that we unlearn that skill?

I have my kids and I have my altar. I am doing okay. And when I get too anxious, I try to remember to be patient. It's not an easy thing to create new life.

20 comments:

  1. This is the birth and you are going through all the pain and euphoria associated with that. When you hold your new life in your hands it will all have been worth it.

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    1. Yes, and right now I'm at that point where after 20 hours of hard labor I'm screaming at the kid to 'just get out'!

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  2. A travelling altar is a great idea!
    Thinking of you! Scary and liberating!
    Yes, we can learn so much from our children!

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    Replies
    1. Yes, the older I get the more I want to be just like them. :)

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  3. I feel a quote from the Dr is in order--

    You're on your own! And you know what you know!
    And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go....

    I'm believing this for you. That soon, YOU will get to make the decisions about where you live and for how long, and what happens to you From Now On.

    XX

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Would I sound completely obtuse if I admitted I don't know who 'The Dr' is? Probably.

      Love you, babe. x

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    2. I would guess Dr Suess? Good luck. Xxx

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    3. Doh, of course! My favorite doctor ever. xo

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  4. You will eventually find your place. In the mean time, be like a child and find the joy (fun) in the everyday as the kids do. I know how difficult that will be for you but for now.....just try.
    And like your altar, everytime you move, God moves with you.

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    Replies
    1. "Everytime you move, God moves with you." I like that. x

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  5. "Oh, the places you'll go!" I believe the good Doctor would be Dr. Seuss, in this case... and you should read that book immediately, if not sooner. It is 100% YOU.

    This business of being reborn is messy. Painful. Necessary.

    You'll give birth to yourself, in time. Trust the Midwife of your Soul, she's never left your side.

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  6. You are so right. We can learn so much from watching the kids. When did we unlearn living in the present????

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    Replies
    1. Kids are adept at the art of living. They get it. I don't know when or why we lose it. x

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  7. I relate on so many levels with this. Are challenges may differ, but we will always have Limbo...

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    Replies
    1. I'm sorry to hear that, Cab. Limbo sux. Probably good for the soul, but terrible for the psyche!

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  8. I like your travelling altar ... you are so wise. xx

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  9. Your written-down goals on the back of the map that you read every day, and the travelling altar, are obviously working. Even though everything must feel so wrong sometimes, you're doing it all so, so right. You always have. You do realise that, don't you? (Even the unintentional 'wrongs' are right, somehow, some way)

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    1. Thanks, K. I feel like I'm doing the only thing I know to do to get through this. I need something positive and affirming to focus on while I'm moving through the darkness. xo

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  10. In lots of ways you are just like a kid again yourself. Rewound back to when anything was possible, but fear held us back. The idea of starting over, fresh and new, is equal parts fascinating and terrifying, especially when it kinda wasn't an easy birth!!! I love your map and altar - something real and grounding, no matter where you are.

    Embrace the possibilities and remember that ou have actually spent a wonderful lifetime building strong relationships that will loo for you should you lose your way. x

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