Decades ago, I came across a quote that spoke of kindness like drops of water filling a vessel until it spills over.
I wonder if it’s the same with hurts. Does everything accumulate? Is there always a tipping point?
Or should there be no accumulation of anything? Should everything flow, pain as well as kindness?
Do I grasp and hold onto injury as much as I do love?
What would come of opening and feeling all of it without holding on?
Instead of weighted and bruised and scabbed, my heart is as soft as a petal.
Whenever I have trouble getting the woodstove going, I think about that family when I was a girl in Colorado.
Why did that fire, unwanted, burn so easily?
And then I think of other things, like pregnancy. A single spring at the bloom of 16, one terrifying conception after the other, while a decade later, an entire year of yearning, followed by one heartbreaking miscarriage and then another.
And what about gardens? We work so hard to grow things, while other things grow no matter how hard we labor against them.
Criticism is like that. Sticky.
People take their lives while others fight to hang on, leaving behind lovers or life’s work or little children and the span of light-filled years expected to unfold…
I don’t like puzzles much, except for the edges. I like the edges of brownies and cookies too. Movies and storybooks run along the edges–the crispy, chewy stuff–without all the soft middles of indigestion & weeding & building the fire & making appointments.
When we do die, I wonder if all the pieces of the puzzle fall into place and look beautiful.
I wonder if we look back and wish for more middles.
Sometimes I avoid going to bed because I feel too overwhelmed about climbing the stairs and flossing my teeth. And when I finally do face it, I’m surprised and congratulatory, “Yay, Kelly, you did it,” but then another night comes, and I’m overwhelmed and resistant all over again.
Sometimes I resist going to bed because it’s a little like dying and I don’t want to miss anything.
Sometimes I go to bed just so a new day can come and I can have another cup of tea.
But back to flossing. If I gave it up, I think I’d get more sleep. Less teeth. More sleep.