I was about to write "I get emotional this time of year" but I don't know if that's universally true.
I feel emotional now. Lately. This week.
I'll have a birthday next week. Thoughts and feelings sometimes latch onto birthdays. How am I spending my time? What have I done with this year? Another one is gone, just like that.
I think that's what I'm feeling. The gone-ness. The oh-my-this-is-good-and-it's-just-whipping-by-year-after-year-after-year.
Getting more and more years makes me blessed or lucky, depending on which word you prefer.
These days I prefer blessed.
I'm not sure why that blessing is sometimes tinged with sadness, but, for me, it is.
Not bad sadness. Because sadness isn't bad. It just is. I said that to my daughter today. She brought home a drawing from art class of a woefully sad-looking face. I was immediately shocked by just how sad this girl looked, worried that it was a depiction of how my girl feels, and simultaneously cognizant of the fact that I simply needed to ask questions about this piece of art - not judge it or make assumptions about it or think it tells A Whole Story Of Something.
So I started asking questions and she got bashful. She made it clear that it wasn't a picture of her. I told her it was okay if it was, "Sad isn't bad, honey. It's okay to be sad." I said those things while not all-the-way believing them. Because while it's okay for me to be sad sometimes, I don't want her to have to be. She's too good and little and tender. I don't want life to happen to her. I just don't.
I know that's not true, that it's ridiculous. It's selfish, even. Because of course I want Life for her. Of course. But there's an aching that comes with it, the knowing of just how odd it can be to unfurl into a confusing and muddling world.
I want her and her brother to unfurl in the safety of my arms. I want to tell them stories of my past hurt so they can know what's possible without needing to take it on themselves.
I read something today, a quote from Craig Minowa of the band Cloud Cult, that really said something.
"Healing came to mean not letting emotions like anger or fear linger — an idea at the core of Love. But even now, more than a decade after his son's death, you can hear that loss from years ago in Minowa's voice. He says he finds solace now in meditating on both mysticism and science. To that point, he has his own take on the first law of thermodynamics.
'Basically, what it says is that energy cannot be destroyed; it can only be transformed,' Minowa says. 'So any kind of energy that you put out there never goes away. Everything that we did together, every moment that we had together, everything that he felt and everything that I felt for him still resonates out there in the universe. And I refuse to believe anything less than the idea that I'll somehow be with my son again.'"
That's what really let my melancholy settle in for a sweet little visit. The idea that, energetically, every single thing I've ever put into the Universe is still there? That's just a really big thing. It made me instantly aware of the kind of energy I want to emit. It made me regretful for all of the truly shitty atoms I've spewed in times of great fear or great pain.
And mostly? Mostly it made me want to turn some sweet-sounding music up loud loud loud and let the tears come and wail like a wild thing and then, all cleaned out from salt and water, stand back up and right my shoulders and keep on moving forward.
Ever forward, into the everything,
PS: It feels horrendously uncouth to have written a whole thing here that says nothing of your lovely and warm response to meeting Tim through his words here this weekend. Thank you for graciously welcoming him to our little corner of the internet, and for loving his vision.