Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Just Today

The hardest part about a big event for me is getting back to the old grind afterwards. Do I want to take down the Harry Potter decorations and clean my house? To get caught up on all the phone calls and errands that were missed last week? Hell no.

But I do want to get ready for Christmas (I almost have my shopping done! Huzzah for amazon, thinkgeek and!), and I want to get back to painting.

I am in an introspective sort of mood today. After realizing that I am the least informed about what is going on in the world that I have been since the baby-haze of the boys' first couple of years lifted, I took some time to do a little catching up yesterday...and now I remember why I have been ignoring the news for months. According to the CBC it is a shitty, scary, dangerous world. The roads are strewn with the bodies of deceased motorists after the last snowstorm. Downtown is a battle zone. Knife-wielding maniacs are about to burst into my home or the school, and the environment is so trashed I may as well give up and go buy a hummer, that is if some virulent new disease doesn't kill me before I can get to the dealership...where I will probably be raped or at the very least groped by a rogue TSA worker before being swindled out of all of my money and sold a lemon.

No more news for me for awhile I think. Somebody PM me on twitter if western Canada is about to be wiped out by a meteor, or evacuated due to bubonic plague or something.

The thing is that we are so safe here comparatively. In Haiti, in Somalia, in Iraq, that's where the mothers do need to fear for their children every day. Here we have bike helmets and car seats, regular medical care, clean, safe water, immunizations, and for the most part law, order and peace. Things aren't perfect, but we are so very lucky, and when I read too much news I have a hard time feeling that, instead I feel worried and wary.

And there is no point in being anxious. Things aren't as bad as the media would have us believe, and what bad there is, we can't truly insulate ourselves against. There is tragedy, disease and death. Like the four boys left without parents after a recent local highway accident, or the DH's friend who passed away last night after being diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's just a year ago. There will be loss. Unpreventable, unreasonable, unfair, unfathomable, purposeless loss. There is no escaping that. It just is.

But the fragility of life, the hard struggle, the knife-edged time and chance are all tied up with the fierce beauty of it too. Maybe the world is shitty, scary and dangerous...but it is also keenly beautiful, full of strange miracles and improbable love. There is today, which for me is cleaning and putting things in order, painting, phone calls, doctor's appointments, and driving kids around, and I am going to try to fill this day with as much love and fun and courage as I can...because in our brief and uncertain lives that is all there is.

And it is a lot.

O Me! O Life!

O me! O life! of the questions of these recurring,
Of the endless trains of the faithless, of cities fill'd with the foolish,
Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I,
and who more faithless?)
Of eyes that vainly crave the light, of the objects mean, of the
struggle ever renew'd,
Of the poor results of all, of the plodding and sordid crowds I see
around me,
Of the empty and useless years of the rest, with the rest me intertwined,
The question, O me! so sad, recurring--What good amid these, O me, O life?

That you are here--that life exists and identity,
That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.

by Walt Whitman

(You know I probably could have just led with Uncle Walt and saved myself a lot of typing this morning. Because, you know, like, totally what he said.)


  1. i have an informal 'news' ban in my house. i don't think actual journalism exists anymore. just idiots and tools looking for a step up by dealing out dollops of fear mongering. to add a verse, via X-Ray Specs: O Bondage! Up Yours!

    the real news is the life in our lives, the cycle of it all. i'm sorry to hear of your DH's loss. that is a cruel disease. i hope, in the midst of it all, he's able to hold on to the things his friend brought to his life. my deep condolences.

    the beat goes on.... la dee da dee dee, la dee da dee dah....

  2. "But the fragility of life, the hard struggle, the knife-edged time and chance are all tied up with the fierce beauty of it too. Maybe the world is shitty, scary and dangerous...but it is also keenly beautiful, full of strange miracles and improbable love." so true

    the news i keep on top of is nerdy news--like the dr who christmas special on christmas day. now that is news i keep on top of!!

  3. Yeah what he/she said! Also O Bondage! Up Yours! Bark bark. d

  4. didn't mention it...but we will be at war with Korea soon. Yay.

  5. well, I prefer to keep my attention on beauty... it is the only thing that lasts! xo

  6. You've said it so well, couldn't agree more. Here's to 'love, fun & courage.'
    BTW that was an over the top birthday bash you put on, amazing!

  7. i feel this post deeply, yes. beautiful writings, and much love your way.


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