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A Monday meander: May flowers and showers

Reflections in the manor house window. (Quail Hollow Park)

The young hear memory in the voice of their elders and, delighted by these voices from the past or bored by them, too often miss the content behind the content. Memory is not about what went on in the past. It is about what is going on inside of us right this moment. It is never idle. It never lets us alone.

~ Joan Chittister, The Gift of Years

Last week’s moon.

Whatever happens to the body, what toll age takes on the physical, the spirit does not grow old. In our dreams, in the way we ourselves see ourselves, we are forever becoming. Our dreams are always the vision of a younger self, a self-contained, energetic, self-determining person with a will of steel. Our dreams reveal to us the basic truth of life: years are biological; the spirit is eternal. The number of our years do not define us. There is in the human being a life force that never dies. It is the life force that proves to us that age does not fossilize us. Down deep, where our souls live, we stay forever young. It is this surging, driving force that brings us to the bar of life every day of our lives, whatever our age, however much we have been through, prepared to live life to the hilt again.

~ Joan Chittister, The Gift of Years

Overlooking one of the gardens. (Quail Hollow)

There is, I believe, some truth to the last quote.  In my dreams I am always a younger self, but one who knows now what I didn’t know back then.  I don’t always see the wrinkles, the jowls, the effects of gravity, when I look at myself in the mirror.  That might be because I don’t do more than glance quickly at myself nor do I have a good look with my glasses on (because who washes their face or brushes their teeth with their glasses on?).  There are times when a glance is enough, when I look down at my hands or catch my reflection in a window and wonder “who is this old woman?”  Those are the times I see my mother, my father, the aunts, and my grandmother.  All the old people are here, with me, in some way.

Another look.

This rainy morning I am thinking about stories, about unraveling, about reality, illusion, the beauty of ancient ruins, and why is it that the falling-apartness and tumbling of ancient abbeys or castles or walls seem so much more beautiful than the tumbling and unraveling and falling-apartness of an aging person.  I’m thinking about blurring vision, loss of hearing and memory, the aches and pains of muscles and bones and an entire body of being, and wondering how that can be expressed in something other than words.  Perhaps through wounded and dead trees, track marks of Emerald Ash Borers, and playing with blur.

Experimenting with blur.

We had this amazing snow day on April 21st and I wrote a little about it in my journal, but never got around to writing too much about it here.  The snow was beautiful and quite short lived.  I think I did mention that there were snowball fights, the building of a snowman, sledding, and other snow play.

Early morning on the day it snowed.

I wrote about play after our snow day, and I’ve continued to take play to heart, to find little moments of abandoning my age and acting like a child.  When the lyrics “we all fall down” come around, I fall down on the ground with the boys and we all laugh and giggle and enjoy the momentum of falling down on a grassy hillside.  I make funny faces and don’t even think about what that might look like.

Bringing spring indoors.

The new nanny starts today.  That gives me the mornings off to enjoy the quiet or listen to podcasts, to do some chores, to write or draw, to sit and watch the rain.  The raucousness of young boys gets to be a bit much when you’re used to silence and spending a lot of time on your own.  They will be coming over for lunch and rest time.  I don’t know what we’ll do after that.  It depends on the weather.  I think the boys could probably use a few quiet days here and there.  Every day is an exercise in physical exhaustion.  Running, climbing, jumping, wrestling.  And if they don’t need the quiet, I certainly do.  Keeping up, no matter how much fun, isn’t as easy as it used to be.

The magic of the woods after the Green Man has moved through.

I went out to listen to the birds and the rain this morning.  Standing there in my bare feet, I felt more in touch with the ground, the trees, the grass, and the earth.  The boys run around barefoot all the time.  Even so, their feet are remarkably soft.  I wear shoes and my feet are terribly calloused and hard.  Is that an age thing or a result of the shoes?

Messages from Emerald Ash Borers. It’s sad to see how many trees have been killed by the infestation.

Well, the boys will be here soon.  I might have time to come back to this later, but I might not so I’ll close it up now and set it to publish at the usual time.  Thank you for visiting with me today as I ramble and meander about nothing in particular.  I always appreciate your company.

Please be safe, be well, and be kind.

Waiting.

A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy:  1,761)  Playing, dancing, singing, laughing, and giggling with abandon.  I’m getting too old to be inhibiting my own joy.  1,762)  The pitter-patter and scent of spring rain.  1,763)  The different shades of green taking over the landscape.  1,764)  Chili for dinner tonight.  It’s cooking now and filling the house with good smells.  1,765)  Quiet time.

The azaleas are blooming.

Author:

Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, yoga teacher, sometime poet, wife, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She shares her daily walks and meanders, a lot of quotes, some of her artwork, and a lot of her photography here on Ye Olde Blogge. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are (still!) in the midst of renovating the house and cleaning up the property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

7 thoughts on “A Monday meander: May flowers and showers

  1. You beautifully expressed how we might age on the outside but keep our youthful spirit inside. This is what allows me, a woman of 63, to write stories about teens. I remember so well what it felt like. Have fun keeping up with those precious bundles of energy. Like young puppies, they need plenty of outside time. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Oh that aging thing. I mind the wrinkles less than the backaches, but it’s hard when my brain says I’m young, and my body says ha ha! The good thing is I’m still around to feel those aches and pains. Keeping up with the young -I’ll watch, thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Like you, when I look in the mirror I see my mother, aunts and grandmothers and it makes me happy to be reminded of them so well. I love the picture of the woods after the Green Man passed through. He hasn’t finished moving through here quite yet…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautiful photos and thoughts, Robin. I had never thought much about my age in dreams, but it’s true, I am younger, but also sort of ageless. I’m glad you’re enjoying time there with your family.

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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