Feeling a bit better now. After my last post, my body seemed to respond to my mood by bursting into a mini cold-flu, making my weekend rather unpleasant, but here I am, on the other end, regrouping, assessing, thinking about things and in general trying to put a different spin on it all.
Yeah, I’m still not entirely crazy about my life these days. But is anyone? I awoke a little while ago, and spent some time just looking out over the snow-covered scene outside my window. I could see stars through the pine trees and a gentle glow from within the coop. How lucky was I to see such tranquility, such beauty, right there in front of me, from my own home? I paused to reflect on the moment. There was still present in my gut a dull sort of dread – I’ll call it that, for lack of a better word – at the frightening and unpleasant things yet before me in my life, but, at the same time, there was also a feeling of gratitude for all I had that was good. I mean come on, I was one lucky woman. I spent a few minutes in a sort of life-review in order to convince myself. I remembered different eras gone by, from spending my summers as a kid on a farm to being a jazz singer in big cities, to sailing on the North Atlantic, jumping out of planes, touring with bands, the years of teaching, hosting a radio program, a long, treasured relationship, a beautiful home (several of them, actually) an enjoyable pregnancy and an amazing child – all manner of experiences, and all my own. All the places I’d been, all the scenes I’d been part of. Man, who gets all of this in a lifetime? An old friend once remarked upon my arrival here (at the doorstep of a yet another ‘new’ life that I was none too happy about) that it seemed I’d lived five different lives already. And she was kinda right. This slower, quieter life in the country may not have the instant appeal or rockstar thrills of my past lives, but it’s a lovely one to be sure.
My mother had come by earlier in the evening for a visit, and Elihu had played his bass for her. As we sat there listening to him, I had realized that this was one of those moments. It was one of those windows in time I’ll be happy to look back on one day. It was one of those perfect little capsules of life. The stuff that makes everyday life worth all the crap. And we showed mom our newly decorated Christmas tree too. And finally, we surprised her with an old video I’d found of the two families from some twenty-seven years ago. Mom was about the age I am now in the video, and Fareed and I were skinnier (and younger) than I ever remember us being. My father played the harpsichord while my parents-in-law looked on. There was a good deal of chatter on the video and we laughed to see everyone being very much themselves. It was such a nice surprise to have a window into that time. Naturally, for me it was a rather bittersweet thing – I still cannot wrap my brain around this whole change thing. But in spite of our whitening hair and widening waistlines, it was wonderful to be able to share it with mom and Elihu both, to give us all a nice sense of the scope and progression of things. I’d originally thought it would be most important for Elihu to see, but in the end, I think it served me better. It’s me, after all, who needs to be reminded of all that I’ve had, and to make peace with the changing landscape of my life – and oh, that last little detail – to somehow come to grips with my mortality. ! (There’s a gal at school who just figures certain changes are inevitable in life and accepts it all with a low-key, classy sort of attitude – I however, find the facts that I need reading glasses, root cover-up and have gone up two dress sizes without even trying are flat-out unacceptable! ‘That shit is for other people! Not me’! I cry as they drag me off to the looney bin…)
Ok. I’m better. I’m seeing things more clearly today. I mean, in a nutshell, I kinda feel I got it all. A wonderful, happy child. Parents next door, a cozy little cottage in the country, overall my health isn’t bad, and let me not forget my job. One in which I actually get to do what it is that I do – and something that I actually enjoy doing. A job at which I see my own child daily, plus I get to be with all these other wonderful kids all day long too. Really? Wow. Yeah, it’s a good thing. A good thing.
From the middle of this snowy winter night, things are looking a lot better than they did a couple of days ago.