We just returned Sunday from a week's trip out west with Tim's family to visit Yellowstone National Park. We animal gazed, swam in the meeting of the Gardner River and the Boiling River, and floated down the Yellowstone. We saw bear, bald eagles, bison, elk. We saw the geysers. Cedar was a delight to see everything with. The first Sunday was Father's Day, Tim and I's 8th Year Anniversary, and the Solstice. There were rainbows visible from the dinner table. Last Saturday, June 27, Cedar turned 3. Tim baked salmon on cedar wooden shingles, and potato cakes. I baked my Grandmom Elly's Lemon Cake for him, having brought the recipe from home, and everybody sang.
Cedar went on his first airplane trips. I loved staying in the hotels and at the rental house; everything is simpler on vacation. The basic needs are met, and the big pressures (bills, vacuuming, washing, laundry) are gone, or greatly reduced. I like collecting everyone's dirty laundry on vacation and throwing a load in. I like being away from the things of home I'm tired of. The first few days away I'm always sick. Homesick, transition-shattered, whatever. But then it passes and I'm interested. Interested in everything. Collecting tiny words and items in my journal (a magpie feather, bison fur, a green circular moss), collecting polaroids and single shots of film and books to read. I found Mountain Man, by Vardis Fisher, and it blew my mind. A different kind of life.
Getting back home was a full day of two flights, a rental car return, a big drive from the city, and a stop at Whole Foods for rooftop tacos and gingerbread, and we were fried, but home. A day to recover, to inspect the garden, to put out the suet cakes, to pick a bouquet, to get stung by the white faced hornets who had industriously put up a complex on our back porch while we were away!, to do laundry, and do it over when I forgot it was down there for a day, to rest. To process.
Cedar will be have a little brother at Christmastime this year; I'm 15 weeks pregnant. The morning/all day sickness was lingering, along with a sort to life nausea of deep questioning and sorting. Not about bringing another life into the world, but how to handle the life I have with more grace. More balance. How to keep focus. How to let things go. How to not hold on. How to live it with joy. There is only the now.
After I had looked for a while at that daffodil before I got up, I asked myself the question, "What do you want of your life?" and I realized with a start of recognition and terror, "Exactly what I have - but to be commensurate, to handle it all better." ~ Journal of a Solitude, May Sarton.
Yesterday I went through all my old journals. In them I found the same questions, dissatisfactions, searching. 20 years of the same old shit. In many ways it was a relief; I guess my memory is so bad I thought present angst was caused by present circumstances. But this is something bigger, older. No one's journey or responsibility but mine. I was surprised too. The same stuff, year after year, and it's like I hadn't even noticed.
How on earth does one shift that? Or make peace with that? With the longing.
I've been listening to the Moonlight Sonata a lot.
There will be time.
...time for all the works and days of hands
that lift and drop a question on your plate;
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.