Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Reverie

The sun came up this morning but there were no fanfares; no salutes of glorious color; light was simply added to the gray clouds. The day is overcast. I guess dull and dreary best describes the sky.

This is an alone day…. A day for quiet introspection. The journalists; naturalists; historians and other authors have retreated inside the closed covers of their books.

Bird feeders needed to be filled so I braved the cold and discovered that the crust over the snow, which I could tread on with caution yesterday, has become slippery and hard. Instead of filling all the feeders I threw out hands full of seeds and filled those feeders nearest to the house. My husband had filled most of the feeders before he left so it wasn’t a difficult task. Next I filled up the birdbath. It never freezes because we bought one with an electric heater (well, at least it stays warm as long as we have electrical power)

On coming back inside I stopped by the mirror to fasten a hair clip loosened by a tree branch as I, unaware, passed too close. Who is that in the mirror? What happened to the person, so filled with hopes and dreams that came to New York these many years past? The person in the mirror is gray-haired --- All right, I did turn sixty-five last Thanksgiving day but something has changed. This image does not match my driver’s license; there are no business suits and carefully coifed hair. This person is not rushing from meeting to meeting and does not have to be concerned about the transit strike (now ice on the hill… that’s another issue.) Don’t get me wrong… I like retirement! I love living on the hill in the woods, I even enjoy soft comfortable clothing from Lands End, L.L.Bean and similar stores. Somehow, I don’t really know how, I guess I hadn’t really noticed that I am ageing until I took that startled look in the mirror. No, I don’t see my mother or even my father reflected. The person looking back at me is someone I’m not really certain I know. Perhaps we will take time and get acquainted.

Darkness falls early; we turn on outside lights shortly after four in the evening now and it is very dark before five. I welcome the darkness, put on a quiet cd to accompany my reverie and curl up in a comfy chair to renew my acquaintance with an old friend. I am reading again “A Circle of Quiet” by Madeleine L’Engle. One of the reasons I got the book out is that she spent a good deal of her life living in New York. Another reason is that she is writing about exploring and defining her life; attempting to answer a question that is important to me, just now… What am I doing with my life?

“We don’t really know what we look like…” ... “I don’t know what I’m like. I get glimpses of myself in other people’s eyes.” Madeleine L’Engle “A Circle of Quiet.”

My life has changed dramatically --- I no longer see myself so much in terms of “daughter,” “wife,” “mother,” or by my job title. I actually am discovering as I grow older that I am beginning to know more of what I am not than of what I am. Yet, even as I make that statement, I am slowly finding more about my love of writing and art --- notice I do not claim competence, simply love and joy in exploration.
As I explore these changes in my life, I am drawn to remember the creator who can guide and direct me through the confusion and uncertainty.

“For you created my inmost being;
You knit me together
In my mother’s womb.
I praise you because
I am fearfully
and wonderfully made.”
--- Psalm 139: 13, 14

I drew this picture for a page in an illustrated journal I have been working on. It is a combination of acrylic paints and charcoal.


Word for today compliments of Madeleine L’Engle Ontology: the study of existence and of the nature of being.

1 Comments:

Blogger Fran said...

I really like this paragraph: My life has changed dramatically --- I no longer see myself so much in terms of “daughter,” “wife,” “mother,” or by my job title. I actually am discovering as I grow older that I am beginning to know more of what I am not than of what I am. Yet, even as I make that statement, I am slowly finding more about my love of writing and art --- notice I do not claim competence, simply love and joy in exploration.

That kind of awareness is worth its weight in gold and it doesn't happen that way for many people as they grow older.

3:38 AM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home