April 2014

hello, it’s me


These photos were taken a month ago, when my deario and I took a walk through our woods on my birthday. Doug has learned how to take photos with my ipod, and I made a point to ask him to snap some pictures of me when he could during our walk. You see…I noticed that when my sons left home, the photos of me dwindled down to almost nothing.

It felt a bit strange not to be seen, or to have evidence of it, in any case.


Tho’ as I reflected on it, as a rosehip, one feels less “seen” in general. Without trying, it is an easy thing to find photos of young women in advertising and elsewhere and blogs are full of creative, lovely women in their thirties and early forties, usually surrounded by children…but there. If you are in the rosebud or full-blown rose period of life, there are lots of places to see other women like yourself.  There are, of course, older women…women in mid-life…out there writing and blogging, but we don’t usually “see” much of them. And the older women we do see most often are highly-polished politicians and television personalities, or so it has seemed to me.

It’s a practical matter as much as anything, I know, because we are often home alone with no one to capture us (if only the hens could handle a camera!). But it is also a matter of confidence, I think, as we find fewer angles and lights that show us as we would like to be shown.


Even in this post, I am much more comfortable with the photos taken from the back. Yet it came to me sometime this winter that what I would like to see is more women my age in the midst of their days, their homes, their lives….their everyday lives. I love to visit Soulemama and Small Things to see that…tho’  there are naturally more photos of the children than the mamas. The human element is so important…and harder to come by at certain seasons of life. When I saw this post, and especially the next-to-the-last photo, I had a sudden longing for such a photo of myself…with my books and notebooks and light about me.

Wouldn’t it be beautiful to capture ourselves deep in the midst of pursuits we love, as we capture our children and other beloveds?


But of course, there are the worries…will people think I am narcissistic? Self-absorbed? Weird? Will it feel false and contrived? And especially, how vulnerable will I feel putting more photos of myself on the web for all to see? Photos that reveal more and more of my mother and father in my face to me, and how strange that feels at the moment?

A few months ago I wouldn’t have put up the last few photos in this post….I have some unease with sharing them. But I also was led to choose them. And these days, I am trying to go more with my heart and spirit and less with my mind. For months I have wanted to start a conversation about this…and make a start with towards manifesting, however imperfectly, these small seeds of becoming more real with myself, and with myself in the world.

This season of the earth coming back to life seems a felicitous time to begin…


winter is over…


…and the colors of my world are changing again. The greys and browns and bleached golds are are being embroidered over with misty greens and an abundance of purple and sky blue are awash over the unplanted fields and barely-awakened lawns.


The ladybugs that have spent the winter with us-sometimes huddled in high corners, more often walking along cup rims and being rescued from baths, are finding their way back outside through the gaps in our old doors which gave them entrance in the autumn…or the windows we open at every chance.


My father-in-law’s Lenten Roses are gracing the windowsill, while the daffodils and forsythia bloom on and on in the pasture and hedgerow. I haven’t felt the inclination yet to bring their lemon-gold inside…perhaps because my home is so dusty and in need of a good scrub at the moment? Yellow is such a fresh color, and my walls and floors and tabletops are in need of some freshening themselves before they can welcome a brown and white pitcher spilling over with forsythia. Soon, soon…


At Wisteria & Sunshine we are beginning with our Soulful Spring Cleaning…which has more to do with becoming less encumbered than with cleaning. And as I prepare to bring home the last of my mother’s things this month…and continue to find my way through the brambles of my search for health…it feels like the right sort of Spring Cleaning for me at the moment.


But if the blue skies and butterflies, waxing moon and tender breezes continue their good work…I hope to soon be at mine with the same warmth and energy.

This is the second year that I’ve been aware of the Mourning Cloak butterfly. Last Spring, the first without my mother on the earth, I was drawn to its name and had an encounter with one that stayed quite close to me for a long while. Since then, they only flit quickly by. But I find it a beautiful contradiction that they are the first of the butterflies to appear in this newborn time of year…