"Off my face! you're the life principle,
more or less, so get going
on a little optimism around here.
Get rid of death. Celebrate increase. Make it be spring."
-Margaret Atwood, from "February"
I'm twenty minutes ahead of schedule this morning, so I decided to sit down and have a cup of coffee at the computer, taking a moment to look over what I'd already written for this post, the one I've been working on for days. What I found was a picture, a stanza, and a half-blank screen - proof that I'd been typing and erasing entirely too much. So I'm taking these bonus minutes in my day to give myself a few boundaries, to force myself to sit down and say what needs to be said:
When I decided to post every day for the month of January, I was on the tail end of a very rough Fall. I was tired and losing hope, defeated by the little things as much as the big. I wasn't writing very often, and some days even talking felt heavy with the weight of implications. When I decided to post every day, I worried all of that would come through, resulting in a web of sad, solemn posts that no one, not even my mother, would read.
Instead, you cheered me on with comments, and reminded me that even when I felt I had nothing to say, there was something to notice, to put to words, to set by a photo; even in the dark I found outlines of light. What I realized is that little promises we make to ourselves and to others, often others we hardly know, can be a powerful sort. What I found as I wrote is that yes, people hear what you don't say, but they also hear what you do, and we can't possibly know what hits home, what connects us, what words make sense of someone else's thoughts. So, I think, in the "just in case," I'm going to keep saying my own words in case they are your words, too. I am going to keep trying to make sense of the senseless, to notice the unnoticeable, and to write what I most often want to silence. Because it's so easy to think someone else has it all figured out, and what joke that turns out to be.
In part, the I am also giving myself thanks - the part of me that kept going, that refused to chastise myself too much for the short, seemingly insignificant posts, for clicking the keys minutes to midnight in an effort to not give up, and for noticing what's worth writing about, what's worth taking the time to snap a picture of, gather into a list, and really, to appreciate. What I found is that it's all worth it, even the breakfast pan just before the eggs, when the red pepper looks like confetti dotting a green spinach park.
So, I think I'll keep up with the posting, even if it isn't every day, and I'll keep privileging the deceptively simple, and I'll be thankful that this space brings me closer to new friends who are not near to me in distance, and even closer to the ones who are. I will be thankful that when I turn um, older, on Monday, someone else in another country will be doing the same, and I'll know that we share more than a day of cake and candles and I'll be grateful to this blog for giving me the chance to discover that.
Twenty-seven, you were rough on me, but I sent you away with a bang. Twenty-eight, bring it.