Wednesday, December 09, 2020

Hello, It's Me, Again

I am here to play a game with myself. I don't know the name, or the rules, but the objective is this... put aside fear, and grief, turn off notifications, stop trying to process or comprehend all that has come to pass, the losses, the challenges, resist the path where everything is conflated and ascribed to this year, to that side, to disconsolate beliefs. Mourning is a long journey, as are perspective, and comprehension, so I will take a rest from trying to unravel and attend to every issue, all the problems, from assigning meaning or significance to everything I see and hear. To this end, I am thinking of what worked, of what mattered, what I learned, appreciated, noticed, enjoyed in the Year of the Rat.

We are all together. A pod, a family. We cook for each other, and fold laundry, we make things, and play games. We have long, heartfelt talks, and find more love and trust, and comfort than we knew possible. We make this work, and make it comfortable, even fun.

I have practiced new things, like cutting hair. I always cut the boys' hair, when they were little, and I've been Max's only barber. But now I cut Geoff's, Maria's, and Bambi's hair. I can process Personal Protective Equipment, make delicious flour tortillas, and upload videos to YouTube. I've kept indoor plants alive.

In the first months of the pandemic, we turned to the garden and found abundance, even when the pickings were slim. Thank goodness for chives, volunteer tomatoes, peppers, and calendula, for nasturtium, and dandelions.

2020 is the year of the pinecone, and skywatching, stargazing, of campfires, and driveway theaters, of bike rides, beach walks, and running cables everywhere to get wifi. This is the year of Bambi teaching ballet, and working at school, art, interning, of Max graduating with a degree in applied mathematics, of William building a giant cat, and doing more consulting work in 3D printing. This is the year of Geoff putting out fires, and keeping me pedaling, of leading the way through developing and producing PPE. This is the year of Alex leading friends, near and far, on adventures in fantasy, writing scripts, creating worlds in Dungeons, meeting Dragons. This is the year Maria faced new and daunting challenges, and has been growing, overcoming, finding new strengths, and giving voice to her beliefs and visions, in words, and art. 2020 is when we finally put up a roof, and solar, when we designed and built a new space, where we will continue, and expand, our mentoring and making events.

This is the year I found that there are some things that are essential to my happiness, and I never want to be without them... love, and sharing. I hope to always make my choices informed by love, by compassion, and respect, and I hope to not only count my blessings, but to share them, as well.

We had another amazing sunrise, this time without wind, thank goodness.

There are a few places around the neighborhood where I can collect fallen pinecones. I wanted them to sprout, like ones I have seen on Pinterest. They make the most beautiful bonsai, small wonders. I don't know if I neglected them, or if they weren't viable to begin with. But they never sprouted, never turned into miniature forests, like I'd hoped. And I might even say, the practically cliché, "2020 fail," but NO! I was delighted with these from the start, from collecting them on my bicycle ride, from gathering little dishes, and planters. Maria and I played at planting them, with moss and stones, and even some geode pieces. And though they didn't "turn out," they have made me happy, as they are. They make me imagine ratty-rats decorating them for their holidays. When the moss is wet, it reminds me of Portland, of my Mom in her forest home, of my dear Redwoods.

I have almost reached 2,000 miles on the bicycle! It's time to pull out an atlas, again, and decide where I am, and where I am going. It's time to imagine, to believe, to hope, and to keep moving forward.

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