Love is the what
I'm fascinated by your journey of discovery. I have no similar experience or words of wisdom to offer, but you know I'll be here reading whatever you choose to share.
Oh my, me too, me too. I just got my passport photo, anticipating travelling up north to see my best buddies while my knees still work, and the picture made me sad and mad - who is that grumpy old woman?It's funny, I had a strange conversation with my daughter last week, we were talking about how old her parents are, and I mentioned I don't look like myself in the mirror to me at all. She said you look just like you mom, and I said no, I have to go back over six years in the photo file before I see someone I recognize. She must think I'm crazy, but there it is. Then we talked about what felt older, 30, 40, 50.... I said thirty felt old psychologically, but we didn't start to feel old until 50, when things started creaking, hair got gray, we got tired. We told her the thirties were about as good as it gets, but the forties weren't bad either...I keep looking back at those old photos for clues, for insight, for wisdom. Nothing yet. Just that I wish I could capture the essence of all that love and adventure and all those laughs and tender moments we had with the kids and put it in a box with a bow so they could feel it now, and me too.I keep waiting to turn a corner here, in my later years, or what I like to call the back half of the bell curve, scrambling, trying not to fall any further down the hill. I am comforted knowing that I don't travel this strange road alone.xo
Sometimes I see old pictures of myself and they really do seem to depict someone else -- someone I only vaguely remember, whose experiences were so different. Which I suppose is true. It IS someone else in those photos!
Steve, but it's still us. WE had those experiences. we were those people. it's the disconnection from that earlier self that I can't fathom. i think she is still there, and she has things to teach me that will help me navigate the place where i have arrived. if that makes sense.
I am going through the same thing.
Ah Mary, maybe it's just cosmic, the state of the world. maybe we just have too thin a skin and the walls that hold our memories are too permeable, taunting us. or maybe it's just a life stage. i have so little tolerance for emotional upheaval and yet i am host to it all the time., even when it's not visible to others. hugs, dear woman. we will breathe.
I see so much of your son in that picture, including a guarded complexity, but maybe I'm reading that in...
last night, we were talking about the film, What About Bob?, a comedic film that james and i both love. it dawned on me that ultimately, the film is about family--the desire to have one, and how they define us. in the film, bill murray's character falls in love with his therapist's family, a family that the therapist--richard dreyfus--is too busy to acknowledge. murray's bonding with his 'new' family heals some of his psychological wounds, and gives him a way to define himself. this is a long-winded way of saying to you that as your family undergoes a profound life change, so, too, will you. you are responding to the movement forward--we cant stop it, we can only reposition ourselves within the new rhythm. and maybe first, it becomes important to remember or review how you got where you are now, in order to accept the invitation to the next dance.
susan, i love that film too! and what a lovely way to see this unfolding, an invitation to the next dance. i will remember that. thank you, heart friend. and love.