And for once I was SuperMom

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Stolen Time

I'm left with the corners.

Some people love the corners.
The corners of the brownies.  The two sides of crunchy.
The corner piece of the pizza. That one that is mostly crust.  I would like to figure out a pizza that is all crust.  I would eat that.
The corner of the couch.  Pillows supporting you on both sides.
The corner of a child's blanky.  That piece that got rubbed and loved until there was nothing left.

I like some corners.
But not only corners.

It's the corners of my life that are left to me.
The end of the day.
When all I really want to do is sit on the couch (maybe even in that corner) and watch Mad Men with my husband.  Those are the moments left to me.  To drag myself into my studio and magically create.

Gracious, Lara, when you put it like that...
Well, I didn't realize it until I wrote it...

It's so hard as a mother.  So many needs crying out.  So many mouths.  So many people that you actually want to be around.
I keep learning things about my friends.
'I did an Ironman once.'
'I was a ballerina.'
'I hiked the Appalachian Trail by myself.'
'I raced outrigger canoes.'
I hear these awesome feats that my friends accomplished and I am proud of them.  The things we did before our time was taken from us.

In the book Out of the Silent Planet, C.S. Lewis paints a picture of a race of bear like alien creatures that only have sex for a short period of their life.  Sex is used for procreation and pleasure, but when their procreative years are over they stop having sex.  (The planet that they live does not have any concept or understanding of sin, all of the creatures live in harmony with each other and themselves.) One of these aliens explains to the main character, Ransom, that things are best experienced when you are given a chance to remember them.  This moment in literature has reverberated in my brain for over ten years, I read Out of the Silent Planet in a literature class in college.  The idea that you only do something for a short period of time and then cherish that particular thing in your mind afterwards, was a huge paradigm shift for me.  If something is good shouldn't you be able to do that all your life?  Especially sex?

Well, with the advent of modern birth control, we don't have to face the same choices that these bear like aliens did, but there are many things in life that I think it's best to wrap this idea around.
Sadly I think that some of the awesome things that we did in our youth are those things.  I was the one who raced outrigger canoes before I had children.  I loved it, I would spend three hours on the water for three days a week.  I was probably in the best shape of my life.  Then I moved to Chicago for graduate school.  When I left I had a sneaky feeling that I would never have an opportunity to race again.  As of yet, I haven't.  I have either lived in a place that was landlocked or just simply, haven't had the time.  I've been able to fondly remember racing; that summer when I was so strong and probably did most of the sun damage I have on my body.

Some things though, we just can't let go.  No matter how many babies need to be bounced.  No matter how many floors need to be swept.  No matter now many people ask of us.
We jam those things in the corners.  Right now, my children are in bed.  My house is somewhat picked up.  My husband is on the phone with his parents.  So I take this time to let some of that pressure that has built up out.  Like that first psst when you pop the top on a soda can.  Just let's the pressure out, so we don't go crazy.  A little peace of time to remind us of who we are, of who we once were.
An hour writing.
A long run...without the jog stroller.
Twenty minutes reading a book on the beach.
Sometimes you're not even alone.
Pushing off on a rock, up the trail.  Strong legs connecting with earth.
Warm sun on your back.  Anytime.
Bare feet in grass.  Always.
Sometimes it's even just looking at your children and remembering your childhood.  Their eyes seeing what yours once did.
Braiding clovers into crowns.
Swinging so hard that you think your feet will touch the sky.

You can roll these moments over in your mind, cherish them.  And every now and then you get to do something a little awesome, all by yourself.

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