recently, i finished a new painting. i found a lot of inspiration from regina's wonderful ecourse and wanted to try and work with color in a more freeing way, for me. the colors seem to be those i collect in memory from our travels and along with them came words that lately seem to need to find them home among my canvas. i really enjoyed the journey she took me on to finish.
"her words escaped her thoughts as she allowed the colors of her travels to wash over her,
find residence in her heart.
her thoughts seems to find meaning among the stars as they blanketed the dark night.
the air was heavy with possibility and promise
and her heart felt free." ssperl (may2013)
may you feel loved, my you feel appreciated, may you realize that you are not alone and part of a larger tribe. one where all its members have moments of bliss and moments of hair-pulling frustration, where their mere presence has soothed someone's heart, and their nearness has helped to foster confidence. it's not easy, mothering. we are all just doing the very best that we can. some days we feel like we can take on the world, while others feel clumsy, ungraceful, and totally overtly emotional ~ but in the end, the most important part of it all is simply to LOVE...when it's easy, when it's hard, when it's frightening, when it's full of doubt, when we feel alone, when we feel supported...love.
to those waiting in the wings of motherhood...know that to someone somewhere you are like a mother figure. they are looking up to you, emulating your grace and confidence, and are ever appreciative of your presence in their lives. you may know this or you may not...but your very existence is a comfort and you are loved like a mother.
listening to my pirates creating mother's day art in the other room with lots of "shhhhh-ing", spelling out words, and arguing with each other - but it's all wrapped in sweetness
my first time making sushi today, yum
fresh new plants at my doors that greet me with color and blooms
my beautiful grandmother and her resolute strength
the crazy frizzy curls this weather is giving my hair lately (what the huh?)
dusting off my flip-flops
the collection of beautiful postcards from talented artists that found their way to my box from this great exchange
an email from my best girly and how it made me smile
his answer to my question...what was the best part of your day today, kai? "drawing my robot and seeing you, mama" (melted my heart)
several circumstances lately in our world have reflected back to me the sheer preciousness of time and the deep reminder of how finite it is. it has occupied much of my thoughts lately when my mind drifts. i have come to realize there is no price that could ever match its value. i feel its bitter sweetness when i look at my boys and how quickly they grow. i see its souvenirs in the fine lines that greet me now when i smile. mostly, i have been reminded...again...at the gift that it is.
it's so easy to meaninglessly fill up our time, to shuffle through busyness and then feel weighted down by the stresses that brings. and with that, find ourselves emptying of joy and wonder. it is not easy to stay present in our days any longer, with so many distractions at our fingertips or tugging at our attentions, but perhaps on those rare occasions we are able to stay within the moment, we will glimpse the true gift that time is.
flipping through the pages, i am humbled by the collective thread of gratitude and how the practice of acknowledging it can be so transformational. our stories, whether grand and extraordinary or subtle and equally as meaningful - speak, reach, spark, and encourage others.
and gratitude is just that, a practice, something we return to often to begin to realize the power and potential. it is not always easy but it does create a shift.
my own gratitude practice is organic and free, yet always present. some evenings i feel moved to write down a handful of daily moments of things i am grateful for in a special journal dedicated to just this. i also have a small journal for each pirate to record their items too. sometimes, i email a dear one and share what i feel most grateful for at the moment. and each morning upon waking, as the to do list writes my dreams from memory and while my eyes are still blurry from sleep; i inhale deeply and think of several things i am most grateful for, to set the tone for the day. gratitude... it's a small word that contains a world of potential.
inspired by kt and her uplifting note to herself, i thought i'd create my own...always more comfortable behind a lens, i was able to manage to snap a selfie while ryder goofed off in front of me and made me laugh. on a recent outing, i had snapped the shot of the 'i love you' on the wall and of course there is il mare, she is always deep within my heart.
this morning i savored the stillness. the quiet moments where the cats and i wake together and begin the morning seemed healing on some sort of deeper level. i lingered in the bathroom to listen to the songs of the birds who awake with such melody in their calls. as it is a holiday for the italians today, the neighborhood seemed to be hanging on to this calm and quiet this morning too, before shutters rise and beaches fill with laughter, lunches, and long strolls together. i drove into work, radio off, in hopes that the morning light would reflect the soothing feel of the morning's soundtrack. this stillness was a gift this morning. a comforting container to insulate against the charged feelings the world and simply everyday life has seemed to hold lately.
it was a short-lived moment of serenity...because you know, then life cranks up the volume and i feel i am ducking and dodging moodiness from those around me, being without hot water at home for day 2 and although repairs are forthcoming - one really discovers how grateful she is for hot water pretty quickly, swarms of mosquitoes that seem to lay in wait until flesh steps out of vehicles, cookies made for friends with the best intentions that decide to have a life of their own and do not wish to separate from their baking sheet, little pirates who think it's funny to lick (um, yes, i did say lick) the screen door and run away laughing (or crying - as that can change on a dime), and coming in the door from work to find everyone resonating on that cycle of totally heightened emotions...and not a hot bath in sight! (((deeeeeep breath)))
dear kai & ryder,
you two are my greatest teachers. some days are challenging and i go to bed wondering what more i could have done, or how i could have handled things differently or maybe more patiently. some days i seriously wonder just how many times i have had to repeat myself and am pretty convinced i am setting some world records. some days i swear that legos (while a brilliant toy) are nothing short of an evil bread crumb meant only for my bare feet to find. some days are pure joy and your presence is as bright as sunshine parting thick rain clouds. some days, i simply witness moments in your daily life, insignificant ones to you, i am sure - but to me...i record them in grand detail to memory in my heart. but each day when i come home or meet you at school, my heart opens a bit wider to greet you. as my dear friend told me once, i have never been a mama before, so i may not always do it right, but i promise you both, that i will try my hardest each and every day. (you are a wise one, mamag).
all my love xo