Wednesday, December 1, 2010

So Much to Carry Home

Morning with Mom, 2010

Spending time with my mom and dad, in their spaces, away from most of my belongings and habits -- it always changes something in me. I watch them move through the world, these two people who created me. I interact with them, as an adult, but still their child. I thought of these things as I watched the sun set outside a small airplane window yesterday evening. There is always so much to carry home.

I watched Bridget Jones's Diary and rode my new green bicycle with my father. The pomegranates in his yard were heavy and ripe. The oranges were not, but we ate them anyway. My mother and I listened to Aerosmith, loudly, while baking biscotti we later dipped in dark chocolate. We shared soup (lentil and lemon rice) and drank tea, both Arabic and green. The air was cool. I planted a winter garden. The sky seemed to stretch forever. I finished reading Tinkers. My favorite line was We saw beaches of snow and blizzards of sand. So beautiful... When I woke in the twin bed, my dreams stayed with me. My fingertips were cold when I wrote this. Now it's my toes.

Today I walked past City Lights Books and read the large hand painted banners in the windows above the store OPEN DOOR, OPEN BOOKS, OPEN MIND, OPEN HEART, TURN LEFT and I sent good thoughts to my mom. She's beginning a new chapter in her life. There is space for new beginnings in all of our lives. Today is the first day of the rest of your life. I don't recall where I first heard this, but I like it. Have you ever thought of it that way? It's kind of exciting.

41 comments:

  1. what a beautiful post, denise. sounds like your visits were wonderful. i'm definitely ready for a new beginning. 2010 has been all kinds of challenging.

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  2. "There is always so much to carry home."

    What a poignant line. Lovely.

    I often remind myself that today is the first day of the rest of my life. Moving forward. Deep breath and smile and find calm. I like to be an optimist (but I'm not sure if I really am one).

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  3. I truly believe the day I put down a drink, now over 20 years ago, was the first day of the rest of my life.

    And what a wonderful second act i've had.

    Welcome back, I've missed your beautiful words.

    xo Jane

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  4. Denise: how i have missed coming over here to your place, such a cozy, safe place, where i feel i can grab a cup of tea and sit on virtual sofa next to you listening to your profound thought and feelings and disarming ways of seeing life.
    Sorry i have not been around lately... Lots of different "noise" around me these days. A big hug to you my friend.

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  5. Yep, kind of felt those words chime within me the day we made our move up here (one month ago today)...

    Your relationship with your parents sounds positive and sweet. A nice visit home. x

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  6. I simply love how (and what) you write.

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  7. Shari, I hope the challenges take a rest and allow a little coasting. Cheers to new beginnings.

    Kate, Thank you. I know what you mean about optimism. Some days I'm clearly the optimist and others...

    flwrjane, I'm sure it was a huge challenge. Act II seems a very good one. I know I'm enjoying the little glimpses I'm able to see.

    Amelia, No worries. You have clearly been very busy. Just keep doing what you love and stop by when you have time.

    Janis, Some days our relationship is positive and sweet and some days it's a little prickly, but they are mine and I love them.

    Elisabelle, Thank you.

    Tiziana, Thanks!

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  8. I love this post so much. Having just returned from my parents' place, I can totally identify with that feeling and they way you change through being with them. You make me want to bake biscotti and curl up wih a book. I had never heard Tinkers but I'll try to get a copy tomorrow and I've yet to see Bridget Jones' Diary (embarressing but true!) I have cold fingers too but that doesn't matter when I read you. Hope your Mum's new chapter goes well; I've always loved that quote and have often told myself that when moving to new places.

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  9. Vanessa, Thank you. You make me smile. I hope your day includes a little warmth, a good book, and something sweet.

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  10. denise, truly such a beautiful post. i really love reading about your reflections upon life. whenever i try to write that way i feel like i end up being cheesy or cliche, but you never seem to! i really love reading your posts! and i love that line from tinkers!

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  11. Jenn, Thank you. Tinkers was a wonderfully thought provoking book.

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  12. there is so much to love about this post. i would give my left arm to spend a day at home with my parents again.

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  13. Right now, I'm thinking that beginnings also are a little bit sad because I must loosen my grip on what was in order to reach out for what is ahead.

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  14. How true that there is always so much to carry home. But it sounds as if your bag was as light as a feather.

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  15. your words are lovely. intensely perfect for me right now. thank you for that.

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  16. welcome back.
    I have missed you.
    I have not been home in a long time.

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  17. waking up in a twin bed...
    always resets things doesn't it.

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  18. Char, Thank you. It must be hard not to be able to see them. I feel lucky.

    Rachael, Good point. A beginning is often matched with an ending and letting go can be tough.

    Michele, There were some bumps in the road, as there so often are, but I returned home with many good memories.

    tara, You are so welcome. Thank you for letting me know.

    RW, It's nice to know I've been missed. Thank you. Not home in a long time? Well, if not going home is a good thing, good. I'll say no more. If you would like to go home, I hope you are able to do so soon.

    abigail, It really does. I feel like a different person in that little bed.

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  19. I always come away from your posts wanting to see what you're seeing and read what you're reading. That's some powerful inspiration.

    cheers to family visits and new chapters.

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  20. Such a thoughtful post and beautiful photo--love all the red elements in it. Our connections with our parents---and our children---are complex--our roles and our memories play so strongly in the evolving relationships.

    my thanksgiving was parallel, but reversed: the parent going to the adult child's home

    sending all good thoughts for your mom as her new chapter unfolds. maintaining an open heart is the challenge, and the best way to live every first day.

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  21. What a lovely, thoughtful post. I think sometimes when we allow change to happen it comes quickly and we find ourselves with new beginnings. I hope your mother has the best of luck with hers!

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  22. Mmm... love that every day is a new start... I wish the best for your mum.

    It made me think...does this mean that the caravan story was fiction and not your life...? Because in that story you only wrote about your dad... and it was so "real" that I thought it was about you...

    ...anyhow. Love reading you lines as always!

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  23. hi denise... i used to think a lot about my relationship with my folks - and now that they have moved closer it's changing yet again....

    lovely words.
    hope all is good in your world!

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  24. Oh I so love this post. That is exactly how I feel when I go visit my mom and dad on Vancouver Island. I went to city books this September on our trip to San Francisco. I love that place :)

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  26. what a wonderful visit...I feel as tho I was with you almost~

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  27. mosey, What a nice thing to say. Thank you.

    nancy, Complex is right, and yes, an open heart is key.

    alexandria, I like what you said about allowing change. It feels comfortable and unforced.

    Anne Marie, If you are referring to the trailer story, nope, it was not fiction. Mom was not living with us.

    Lisa, I've definitely seen change too. It seems these relationships will continue to change and grow as we all do the same. All is pretty good in my world. Thanks for stopping by.

    Raina, City Lights is a great space. They have a nice collection of books and magazines and cozy creaky hardwood floors. I'm happy to know you enjoyed visiting.

    thegreenpoet, Thank you.

    t, Thanks. We made some good memories.

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  28. I haven't seen my mom in almost a year now and your post just made me miss her even more... It's so nice that you got to spend some quality time with your parents Denise.
    Magda

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  29. yes - i love how that quote gives me a little woo-hoo spring in my step...a kind of who knows what adventures are just around the corner... thank you for sharing your visit with your parents - it sounded sublime (especially the biscotti aerosmith combo :). i love how i can go "home" and be an adult, but still be a child - there is something very comforting in that.

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  30. Magda, I hope you see her soon.

    Annie, A little woo-hoo anything seems good to me. Enjoy it! The Aerosmith baking was fun. I highly recommend it.

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  31. So glad your visit home was a good one. Listening to Areosmith with your Mom? Just wonderful. Glad to have you back.

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  32. What a wonderful post. I think your parents sound lovely! And, yes, I've heard the line. It really resonates with me these days. Each day I wake up and wonder if today is the day I go into labor. Is today the first day of the rest of my life...? xo

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  33. i love how you write....i almost felt like i was there with you....

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  34. Jane, It's raining today, again. I wish I was baking with Mom and listening to some good music.

    redmenace, Going into labor will surely be the beginning of an exciting shift in your life. What anticipation. Happy planning.

    beth, I'm so glad it felt that way. Thank you for letting me know.

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  35. such a lovely post. the list of things at your parents' house is just so so lovely. welcome home.

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  36. As usual, you captured so perfectly what it feels like to spend time with the parents. I'm leaving in a few days to take 5 glorious days off with my folks and reading this makes the anticipation even greater.

    I sometimes forget that each and every day can be the first day of your life. Thanks for the reminder.

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  37. Thank you, Rachel. Enjoy your time with your family.

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  38. Precious! Wonderfully precious. To have such a rich and nurturing relationship with your parents. What a gift. I begin to understand how it may be that you bring some much to your writing. A foundation of trust and nurture such as you hint at may be a factor that has assisted you to send down deep and wide roots into life. I admire you, and envy you.

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