Solstice 2014: Still

I wanted to write about stillness tonight.  But in all honesty I did not experience much of it today. Wednesdays are never still.  I work at co-op preschool with Wyatt in the morning, then a few errands, and usually an afternoon full of mundane but important stuff.  Occasionally, a play date with a mom whom I like -- and her kid.  Today was no different. 

About 3 p.m. today, my friend and I watched (and tried to ignore) two children running laps around the big table on my deck happily screaming potty words at the top of their lungs.  We were "getting the wiggles out" as we call it around here.  My poor neighbors.

You see, a little friend and her mom had stopped by to help us do some decorating on the gingerbread house we started yesterday.  I have never made such a house before.  Not sure when we will do it again, either.  But all I can say is that the excitement around this "craft of food" as Wyatt calls it, is astonishing. So is the mess. There are so many (like hundreds) holiday sprinkles and silver dragees rolling around on the kitchen floor right now I wonder how long it will be until one of us bites it. (Hopefully it won't be grandpa.)

And then about an hour ago, Byron and Wyatt tucked themselves into bed.  I started the dishwasher and then turned off all the lights except the twinkling Christmas tree and the candle-lit Solstice Tree. And I stood there. Still.

For the first time today I listened to my own breathing, took notice of whether my feet were warm or cold, remembered to take my hair out of its ponytail, and noticed that Annie Lennox was singing "Silent Night" on the stereo.   And then I came here to write.

I don't mean to sound as if I'm complaining about the cacophony that is my life.  Actually I like exactly what I have.  It's not a quiet life.  Not a typical path.  Not always clear where I'm headed or how I'll get there.  But, after five years on this unique journey, I feel lucky every day to have the opportunity to work as a curator, parent, student, volunteer, adviser, friend, mother, and partner -- still. 

 Photo: A single candle in the Mission Santa Rosa de Todos Santos, Todos Santos, Baja Sur, Mexico.


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