Parenthood has welcomed me into a rhythm that circles ’round year after year rather than an endless meridian stretching farther than the eye can see. There are some rituals that are inevitable. We’ll celebrate birthdays and we’ll call in the new year, but thankfully, I’ve chosen a partner who agrees that doing things the seem way, year after year is just plain ole boring.
I’ve never been one for routine, but I melted quickly into rhythm, which, I suppose does make sense, being a dancer. I like the predictability that choreography brings, while I also enjoy forms of dance that allow for fluidity and interpretation. Although ballet has always whispered to me, I’ve never been excellent at listening in return to all of her rules. Instead I’m all eye rolls and whatevers….I’m a contemporary girl. I live my life in the same footless tights. I like fluidity and ease.
So as spring is unfolding before our eyes, once again we find ourselves venturing out of doors, seeking the smallest signs that it’s really on its way. As in years past, we’ve begun to seek more opportunities to fill our days with breaths of fresh air, doors open wide while the fire roars away, and talk of nature journals is bubbling in our home. A sure sign that the season is upon us.
This is me, welcoming the traditions of spring without following the same schedule we followed last year. As our family has grown, we’ve let go of traditional Easter demands, and we’ve floated into our own celebration of new life. Some may take the time to call it Ostara, but we’re less focused on its name. This year’s seasonal change was kicked off by Moonchild’s birthday…He turned 5 this past March, and we kicked off his party with a bunny celebration by request.The ears are curtesy of his sister.
We’ve been finding joy in treasures left from last year…
and in being in the sunshine together…and the snow…again…still..
continuing our yearly bird study…a little more in depth each timeand tea parties…they’re a staple…
Ultimately, we’re following what sparks life in us…Easter at it’s core.
until next time
Yesterday I celebrated my 34th trip around the sun.
This past trip has been one of deep thought, of growth and change.
I’m grateful for this year I get to add to my age.
At 59 years old my father took his last breath, lying in a hospital bed, with his hand in mine. His body, weary from the treatment that ultimately ended his life. He resembled an old man, rather than a person approaching retirement. I watched him slip away, the last bit of life circulating through him, until it slid away in his final exhale. Still filled with hope, stones left unturned, animals left unnamed, a cabin left in a pile of milled beams. He didn’t die feeling peace. There was no magical moment when I knew he believed he had lived a full life, no romance. That single moment changed the path of my entire life.
At 34 my dad had already lived more than half of his life, and so I look at birthdays differently than most thirty-somethings. My fears don’t lie in growing older. White hair, I welcome you. Fine lines around my eyes, I’ve inherited you from my ancestors and wear you proudly like a map of the places I have been. I’ve grown weary of not liking myself.
I’ve discovered my inner rebel in my thirties. She wears clothes that don’t fit the design laid out for adult women. She speaks words that have been hidden away for three decades, and she has given up caring about changing people’s minds. She no longer desires to wear underclothes that spend the majority of their time wedged in uncomfortable places. She doesn’t pine after curves and slender figures displayed upon billboards featuring girls who are meant to represent women. It’s liberating.
I once envisioned my life as a basket containing a treasure for every year I lived. I now know that my basket becomes lighter as the years pass. With each passing year, I toss away another inhibition, and I glow a little bit brighter.
Where I once lived each day by the voices of criticism in my head, voices of those different from my own, I now quiet them in support of a smaller voice whose power is growing. Where I once worried about fitting in busy days to prove my self worth, I now aim to enjoy a slow-paced week, without proclaiming “I’m busy!” to those I meet. Where I once feared what was coming for me around the next corner, I’ve begun to learn the skill of relaxing into this journey that life is spilling out before me.
It’s good now. It can still be good tomorrow. For the most part, it’s up to me.
photo credits go to MoonChild, age5