Fields and thoughts

But also I say this: that light
is an invitation
to happiness
and that happiness

when it's done right
is a kind of holiness,
palpable and redemptive.

(from Poppies, by Mary Oliver)

You know the way a farmer lets a certain field go to sleep for a bit, gives it a rest, so that it can regather nourishment and life? That's what I've been doing. Inadvertently. Over here.

I was feeling pretty undecided, all winter, about continuing this blog. Wondering if I should still be writing publicly about my children now that they, especially Pea, are nearing ages where privacy and identity are more and more theirs to claim and own. I want them to only ever feel extraordinarily good about what I've written in regards to them. I have always used our real names. At the same time, I can only ever tell the truth. I love writing the daily graces (weekly, monthly is more like it) and I love the community of friends near and I far who read (and even, occasionally, comment.) I love being able to go back months later and remember certain feelings I had, certain ideas, certain days. The good, the bad, the difficult, the hilarious.

But I was weary of everything that felt tired and familiar and my heart was exhausted from a year of incredible growth tied to deep challenges. Oh, my heart. It continues to mend and then break and then mend again. This is probably my life's theme.

This field needed to be plowed under and ignored. In a healthy way. It needed to be covered with crows and traveling geese; drowned in late-fall rains and frozen in good, clean snow. It needed to sit in early spring's pale mornings and have no one tearing at it or trying to wrench meaning from it.

Sit. Just sit.

And now it is June. It has been an unusually dark spring outside, and an unusually peaceful one within. All this away time has been put to very good use. Not in projects or obvious accomplishments, but in time to think and time spent away from computers. Time spent reading book after book, both child and adult versions. Time spent with good company, good food, satisfying and challenging conversations. You know, my favorite parts of life.

I have decided to return. To plant again, if I can stretch the metaphor a bit. I will still use Twitter as a record of daily things and as the best way to communicate with me--it doesn't require my full attention and therefore is an easier fit with my current life. But I will be back here from time to time, hopefully weekly, to remember and photograph in a little more detail. I have decided to use another, not public yet, site as a place for deeper thoughts and essay work, anything deeply personal. If things are lighter here, it will only be in the interests of privacy and having my children see their names associated mostly with happiness and only occasionally a very bad day.

A quick 8 month update:

Pea and Birdie are excellent (as you can see). Tall, perceptive, strong. One is an excellent sleeper (still) and one is not (STILL).

We are beginning a family adventure in unschooling. This fits perfectly with Jeffrey's and my philosophy of life-long learning and having our children grow up as free and world-changing (hopefully) thinkers instead of sheep who know how to take tests.

I am continuing to plot and plan my future work in post-partum care.

I never EVER thought I would say this, but I am still loving being home with the girls. There is nowhere else I currently wish to be. Sometimes I am still surprised by this.

You should friend me on Goodreads. Everything I'm reading and everything the girls and I are reading is usually there or will soon be there.

I hope you are well, sleeping better than I am, and eating good food and reading good books. I hope you are thinking and changing and growing and learning and dreaming and fighting for and talking about what you believe in most. I hope we can do more of this together soon.


Lunatic Mapmaker said...

Well said! I thought of Keillor's sign off from Writer's Almanac as I finished your post. That's a good sign, I think!

Stretch Mark Mama said...

Didn't think your girls could get any cuter!!!

Shannon said...


all of it.