I was doing a little shopping the other day and an old (and dear) friend chided me, “update your blog, will ya?”
I know its been a month. I know the last post was about a dead animal on the road. I know its time for some meatier thoughts, some encouraging words, something raw.
But lest you think my silence is without cause, let me reassure you my lack of posting is, in fact, with reason.
Take a breath….are you ready?
I have been participating in something archaic…. something almost primitive…something so “old school”…
I have been writing with a pen. Yes, a good old black ballpoint pen and a journal made of actual paper. The kind of journal that now contains my messy scribbling (does everyone’s handwriting get worse with age?), more fragmented sentences and “…” than even the stuff I have shared online (yes, its possible), and half prayers and lists and random thoughts and writing ideas.
I have to say I am getting fairly attached to my journal. It’s a fat one…three different shades of blue in horizontal lines across the cover, spiral bound, college rule paper inside with blue trim flanking each page front and back. The front simply says “journal” in the most ordinary font imaginable. I like it. It says “I am feminine, but not fussy.” It isn’t necessarily happy or necessarily moody….maybe something more along the lines of calm and settled. I bought it only a day into my visit to Ohio in anticipation of the evils of dial up. It has become a good friend.
But I still have missed you, my online friends and readers. My blue journal, loved as it may be, has not taken your place. Don’t fret J
I have an amazingly small need for privacy. (if you’ve read more than one post here, that’s obvious enough) I have a love/hate relationship with this part of myself. I spent years feeling guilty for talking too much and divulging more than the average person cared to digest. Then somewhere between those years and a month ago, I embraced my ability to share and was able to experience how God could use it. But a month of writing in a blue journal, with no one reading and no one commenting and no one knowing, I came to a surprising conclusion. I missed having some space all my own. I know more than half of you reading cannot imagine that being surprising at all but for an extremist like myself, the notion of balance often occurs as the most original idea of all time.
A rich interior life…its something I am praying for….to be able to have space and time and thoughts that are only for my own personal ponderings and conversations with God…scribbles of broken sentences and funny memories and tears and questions that never leave the surreal moments when time stands still and I am content with just being.
My parents have a fireplace in their living room. Its nothing to write home about, really— its not even wood burning one. You just flip a switch and the flames are quickly take shape. Many mornings I would wake before 5:00am (I also have an amazingly small need for sleep) and wrap myself in a multi-colored afghan my grandmother had crocheted and flip that switch and sit curled up in front of that electric fireplace. I would sip on a hot cup of tea, enjoying the flavor and the warming of my cold fingers equally. I would often just sit quietly for a long time, intermittently reading and writing and studying. I would alternate lying down and sitting up, rotating myself when the heat began to scorch any given side of my body. Sometimes I did nothing more than think, wondering about life and God and who I was… Those memories feel very close to my heart and close to who I really am when all the ‘should be’s’ and ‘wanna be’s’ get stripped away…they feel a lot like grandma’s afghan—soft, fuzzy yarn in muted colors—comfortable and familiar and warm and deep and steady.
I am on a plane, headed back to Seattle and to my love and to our puppies and to my sweet girls Bible study and to my life…. With my gray earphones in my ears, I have created my own little world on this packed flight, sitting mere inches from at least eight other people. And listening to the soothing Emerald EP (myspace.com/garity) what is consuming my mind is the question of how to get back to those afghan moments of my youth….how to create that kind of space in my own home which lacks the smell of my mom and a fireplace and grandma’s blanket?
Journey with me, friends…let’s find that space in our lives and homes and hearts for that quiet beauty and wonder to flourish….
May God nurture that inner richness in you today.