July 25, 2013 § Leave a comment
A cool night breeze
A kindred spirit at work
The end of a taxing day
Feelings of growth and change
A surpassing peace
Patience freely offered
Roommate’s gift of chocolate
July 17, 2013 § Leave a comment
In the kitchen, I’m immersed. Sometimes there’s music playing, but more often not, as I focus on the ingredients coming together and not leaving anything out. The stirring and slicing, pouring and patting, rolling and resting make for an enjoyable process. From start to finish, I have the goal in mind, but I’m fully “in” the time spent getting there. The length of the recipe dwindles until there’s but a few steps left, save for popping the dish in the oven and enjoying the welcome “hands off” time. The waiting is like that of a kid on Christmas Day. Intense desire mixed with almost overwhelming impatience. Opening that oven door, I’m filled with trepidation and excitement to see what has become of my raw ingredients, my labor. Hoping for “looks good” as much as “tastes good,” at first. The time spent making this tart on Sunday impressed upon me a larger truth about myself. I’m quick to want to see results in daily life and issues, but, in the kitchen, willing to give myself the time I need for a good outcome. I am (mostly) content in the process and committed to seeing it through to completion. Having a definite beginning and end makes this easier, no doubt. But the parallels to my life and faith and pursuits is still valid. Being so desirous of achieving and reaching and arriving, I needed that reminder that the process is still worthwhile, still meaningful. Embracing all that came before can make the end that much sweeter.
July 11, 2013 § Leave a comment
I have not been in a writing mood lately, and yet I miss it. I want to be in one. Maybe it’s lacking because of the new job or fun distractions with friends or not enough sleep or all of the above. I like having ideas or phrases or glimpses flitting around in my mind–a snatch of a potential conversation between two characters, a quotable thought, an unexplored issue that deserves more scrutiny, an outrage, an inspiration, a scene or a daydream.
I’m reading much right now, specifically some books to review and then others I’ve been slowly walking through simultaneously as is my way: this, that, and the other. I’ll get around to them all eventually. I know reading can be the spark to pick up a pen myself. There’s been plenty of journaling and writing out my prayers, but nothing more in a creative vein. I wonder and ponder and nothing much comes to mind to pursue. I’ve started to question where that need has gone. In the face of a current contentment, perhaps the push to create, to make, has gone dormant. It brings to mind an idea I’ve read before, most recently from Julian Fellowes, the man behind Downton Abbey, that happiness is the hardest to dramatize. That happy stories don’t lend themselves to riveting performances.
In my life, I wonder if this plays itself out in the lack of push or fervor without conflict or turmoil? Wrestling with unanswered questions or insecurities, opposing internal and external forces, does provide the basis of most art. Yet, a sense of contentment is the most sought after, even coveted, state. I certainly don’t begrudge it and its place in my heart. Yet, in all I have added to my life lately, something feels subtracted. Routine has edged out following where each day leads, or, put another way, a lazy unencumbered leisure. Time with friends, welcome and sought after, does cut into time alone with my percolating thoughts. The nearness of everything that was so far away a few months ago keeps opportunities abounding and my hours full.
It’s a welcome time, truly, just bringing with it its own adjustments as well as rewards.