Archives for posts with tag: all of my love

I sat, relaxed and contented, contemplating the quiet evening of solitude ahead. “I’ll probably spend some time out in the garden.” I said, smiling. I looked at my hands. “My nails are too long. I should cut them back, first…”

“Wear gloves. It’ll keep your hands clean and minimize the risk of leptospirosis…” my partner suggested. Seeing my frown, he added “I’m just looking out for you.” I smiled back and agreed his idea is a good one, wondering briefly if perhaps he disapproves of the way I encourage the chipmunks and squirrels. I let that foolishness go, as soon as the thought forms.

One rose among many and a lovely afternoon.

Some time later, enjoying the evening alone, I went out into the garden for awhile. I pulled some weeds. Smelled newly opened roses. Gazed into the trees, and enjoyed the glow of late afternoon sunshine on a warm spring day. It was lovely. I returned to the cooler comfort of the indoors, and washed my hands. I enjoyed a certain merriment; no broken nails. Nice.

What is enough?

Sitting quietly on my meditation cushion, I enjoyed the breeze filling the living room. When it began to cool down, as the sun sank low in the sky, and the living room was suffused with a sort of peach-colored glow, I got up to close the patio door… and broke a nail right to the quick, as I pulled the door closed. Fuck.

Perfect is a fiction.

…And I giggled. Then I laughed. I laughed for awhile. It felt good to laugh so… thoroughly. So much mirth over a broken nail. Cheap thrills, right? lol I sat down, still smiling, and cut my nails. At least they’re more or less even, and in proportion to each other. Short nails; fast typing. 🙂 Nothing really changes here. Short nails. Long nails. It’s the sort of irrelevant detail it’s so easy to get wound up over. Not last night. Not today. I woke still smiling.

Somehow I suspect there’s a lesson here, somewhere beyond the laughter, no doubt buried in a moment of reflection at higher altitude. Some metaphor? For now, the laughter is enough. 🙂

 

My first cup of coffee followed a hurried trip to the grocery store, which I chose to do after waking to snow. It was falling, at that time, and the roads were still only mildly slushy. I’d planned to go later, but figured there was at least some risk that the snow might continue to fall, shutting us in for a day or two. Working from home isn’t a challenge; I’ve got the freedom to do so any time I choose to, which is a circumstance of this job I greatly appreciate. Still, being “stuck at home” with dwindling pantry supplies that had originally been stocked based solely on my own needs and preferences would suck pretty quickly, and potentially cause strife. So. Shopping. Before coffee. It was an easy trip, and the store was not at all crowded at 7:15 am on a snowy Sunday.

I returned home satisfied, content, and delighted to see my Traveling Partner awake already (we’d stayed up quite late watching movies together, and enjoying the intimacy and warmth of being wrapped in each other’s love, and entertained by each other’s merriment). The joyful greeting when I walked in the door has left a lingering smile that remains on my face even now, more than an hour later. I very much love being welcomed home by someone I love, who loves me in return.

The house is comfortably warm. The squirrels, chipmunks, and birds seem pleased with their morning feast on the deck. I made a point to thaw the water in the bird bath, too. The squirrels regularly seek out a drink of water from that dish. The snow on the deck is pretty. My coffee was delicious.

I sat quietly for a time, feeling the gratitude for this comfort, this pleasant place, these circumstances, this life… and, strangely, the softness of my skin, as I gently rub my hands out of some unnoticed impulse. So soft. So useful, these hands. So capable. I spend some minutes, tenderly, just being aware of how well I am caring for myself, generally, these days. No negative self-talk. A moment of honest appreciation for the woman in the mirror, and this decently, sustainably, modestly comfortable life I provide myself these days (and now share with my partner). I allow myself a moment of thanks – from me, for me. It’s not always easy. I have to make choices, and sometimes that means “telling myself no” on questions of luxury, of frivolity, of entertainment, and of expenses that I can’t really afford, in the moment. That’s just real. I am content with sufficiency. Trying to snatch more from life than what is enough to be content with has done more to hurt my quality of life than most other sorts of poor decision-making has. I consider that awhile longer.

I look at these hands, and gently stroke the soft skin, noticing, not unkindly, that these are not the hands of a woman of 22 – or of 40. Aging is a very real thing, and it’s hard to say much about it that provides any really meaningful insight, until I get to that place… and then, it’s damned difficult to communicate across the great divide that is the profound difference in perspective between the young, and the older. (Seriously. So hard.) I don’t know much about what the experience ahead is going to be like. I know what I’ve been through, myself, and what I’m going through, now… mostly. I have a layperson’s understanding of this experience. My perspective, only. It’s all very subjective, and poorly informed by any real science on the matter. It is what it is, and that is enough.

I enjoy the softness of my skin, without regard to understanding every detail of the anatomy, physiology, chemistry, biology, psychology, or sociology of being a human being over 50. This moment, this flesh, and this enjoyment of existence are easily experienced absent all that. I love knowing what I can know. I eagerly seek out more knowledge. It has, nonetheless, been enormously freeing to release my experience of living life from the bonds of opinion, knowledge, expectations, assumptions, and superstitious narrative about aging passed from generation to generation. It makes so much more practical sense to simply experience the moment, present, and aware. So I do that. I avoid filling my head with “because…” sorts of things; it’s the sort of thinking that tends to foster uninformed opinions that don’t stand up to scrutiny.

There’s time for another coffee later. Time to relax and watch the squirrels play on the deck. Time to enjoy reading a book by the fire. Time for conversation and laughter, and late nights watching movies with someone I love. There is time to live life “now”.

…Are you not enjoying your experience? Are you not able to appreciate all you do for yourself each day? I’ve got great news for you… there’s also time for beginning again. You can change how you experience life, each moment, and each day. There are verbs involved. Choices. Changes you may need to make. All within reach, though; practical, achievable positive changes in perspective, in sense of self, in experience of agency, in contentment – you can do this, if you want it, if you choose it, if you practice. We become what we practice.

You’ve got this. Go ahead, begin again. ❤