would-be-mom, window-dressing, wifey-evolution

These are days of thunder-less clouds, of quivering rain-soaked leaves, of things starting out one way and ending another. Expectations are for fools: the bright shiny bits of tinfoil that trick the crows with their dark feathers and bright eyes to plummet towards the ground.

Assortment of birds, small feathered creatures, hopping on the front porch; they keep swooping back and forth across the road; wings like sudden shadows lifting free from the foliage, everything so green it almost aches.

The damp air is sweet with the fragrance of bloom and fruit and soil. The air is so humid it feels like we are drinking water as we breathe our skin slick and salty, feet skimming the gravel. We have hardly been doing things together. No walks, hardly any talks, not even meals! And, I just cannot get my head around the fact … and somehow, its stupid that it frustrates me so much! Solitary! Is what I know of doing things, on my own! Everything, well almost everything … alone. Then why this? The uneven terrain of marriage, breathing hard, sometimes quiet, sometimes telling each other little things.

Sustaining has been the one thing that has held this summer. Even when everything else is at a loss: words, money, time, we’ve had sustaining. Even when things have been endless: rain, worry, self doubt, there has been blood thrumming through the capillaries in our lungs, our rib bones rising and falling hard like the hulls of little boats pitching on a storm tossed sea.

It is something to sustain everyday without expectation. Day in, day out… to “just get onto the boat, do your job” … just go, and gradually mark a difference. I am trying to learn this: to expect nothing and persist.

To wipe sticky cheeks, to weep, to read stories, kiss good morning and nights, experiment with age old recipes, gather words, gather four leaf clovers, gather hope, drink lemonade, drink butter milk, put words on the page, hit the delete key, hit the wall, dig in the dirt, remember, recycle, rinse the plates, stay up late, write… click pictures, collage out of glossies.

Some days it takes everything just to show up for the day. To get out of bed after a night that turned into a wind-whipped laundry line of hours.

I’ll be honest. Some mornings I wake up wanting to put my fist through a wall. There are mornings when I hate the sound of crows in the trees. Mornings where my thoughts are black and jagged and tea seems like a weak substitute for all the hours unslept and torn into fragments by the urgent primal demands of my baby.

And its on those days that perseverance of sustaining matters most. That time on the road has become the footing that makes it possible to go forwards in my life. And look! I can run faster than I ever have.

Some days it is only the only thing saves me: if I can just breathe and I can write. If I can write, I can live. If I can live, I can mother.

It is the hardest thing, this: to turn towards a new day with empty palms, ready to let it be whatever it is, and still to persist stubbornly.

the rides bumpy but fun...

In the pale crook of a birch a robin threading its song through the fluttering green of newly furled leaves makes my heart tremble. Things are up in the air, and I’m holding my breath waiting for unrecognized brilliance. It’s like I’m occupying the thin space between air and water in a drinking glass, where the whole world is reflected in a line.

I spend whole days skimming, flitting, careening. In my moleskin I’ve started writing again, finger bones gripping in quiet concert, the lead becoming a rush of loopy js and ys, answering the same questions each morning: what do I feel? What do I want?

The thing about being married is that it tricks you into the slow, sedate delusion that you actually know the human being you are married to. Because I wake up next to him every morning, heck, I should know my husband like the back of my hand, right? (Although when I think about it, I’m not sure I could describe the back of my hand to anyone without actually LOOKING at it either.) For granted are two words that come into play here, with their accompanying ache and grayness, each syllable painted the color of the rain heavy sky.

And the thing is, for quite some time you can slip into a groove with another person. A routine gets built around you like a Lego fortress, and you’re there inside it, contentedly going about the brightly colored bits of your day. Tea together in the morning, maybe. An easy push-pull exchange of laundry and dishes and getting things done. Then something happens and within hours, seconds, days, whatever, you’re standing facing each other with hot cheeks and fingers clenched wondering who the hell the other person is.

And yet with this baby curveball we’ve got going on, it is something we’re both into. Something that’s made us feel like a unit, a family beyond what we are right now, and we plunged into the long month of July eager with plans and complacent with delight.

I spend much of the day curled like a cat, now, dozing. My dreams are surreal and technicolored and sexy. My stomach is in a constant state of upheaval, the word nausea hardly encompasses the scope of queasy that I feel. It is a perpetual all day thing, indigestion, bloating, every single food suspect.

I turn my nose up at foods I have always loved; I become obsessed with certain food and then suddenly, irrationally, cannot stand them. The kitchen and the refrigerator are a dangerous place. I can hardly stand to open the door. My sense of smell has gone from acute, which it has always been, to hyper sensitive. I can smell onions across the room. Garlic makes me dry heave.

It’s a weird state to have suddenly slipped into. Pregnancy has forced rest upon me. It’s been a long time since I sat in a lawn chair on the grass and did nothing. I sit and watch clouds get tangled at the horizon; swallowtails land on the yellow roses by the door

Even as I feel fiercely protective of my tender belly, where this unexpected miraculous handful of cells is multiplying and growing: tiny arm buds, eyelids, it’s heartbeat like the fluttering wings of birds.

I turn away so he cannot see my eyes, suddenly hot with tears.


cocktail hangover

Day after day the rain comes in the evening, the windowsills wet. I eat an extra cookie, the chocolate melting bitter and sweet and sticky on my tongue, crumbs on the couch for sure, and put try and read, amidst all the home-maker stuff! A rookie home-maker!

So, I’ve been moody with this rain, the humidity making my hair curl and my skin stick. I have 10 tabs open in my internet browser and I’m on the verge of tears, right on the cusp of everything as usual. It’s so terrifying to contemplate doing more than whatever it is I’m doing right now.

As in: trying to get work, figuring more things out, putting my heart out there in thin lines of Trebuchet MS double spaced and waiting for whatever.

It’s terrifying to sit here on our art leather couch with all sorts of aches and bloated feelings contemplating what else could be a reality soon, or never, or maybe. What if I make it?

Sometimes that question is almost as confounding and daunting as What if I don’t?

Here are the things I suck at: networking, time lines and deadlines. Here are the things I am good at: sentences, earnestness, heart, metaphors, and dreaming.

Between those two columns are the three words that Nike made so very famous: just do it. Sometimes that feels impossibly hard. Sometimes I don’t even know what that looks like, doing it, going for it: where to begin?

Breath. I come back to that. And then I go back to my browser with it’s ten open tabs and try to make sense of my life.

And: Which is more terrifying: attempting success and failing, or failing to attempt success? Ha!