Most mornings I am out in my kayak or on the trail before water skiers shatter the silence and roil the water, before bundled up fishermen hunkered on bench seats troll for a limit of trout, before the light glints the graceful arc of a fly fisherman's line. Just to sight the eagle sitting on a tree top, or furry merganser babies following their mother single file or a pair of talkative geese with a gosling or two brings me intense meditative pleasure. Cabin days are slow and meandering: lots of reading, eating, lots of sitting on the deck doing what could pass for nothing. It is just this solitude, just this lassitude that isn't boredom or weariness, that brings me to neutral, to being who I am when I'm not an artist, not a mother, not a wife, not a grandmother, not a friend, not a striver, not challenging myself, not thinking, not looking to be all I can be.
For ten days I've let myself be and pushed back thoughts that I should be doing something else. It is taking a lot faith in myself to just be, to let hours while away without anything to show for them except books read, meals planned and eaten, conversations with friends. I believe I will begin to paint, to draw, to decide if I want to pursue my card making again, and yet this doing nothing much, this tolerating a long inner silence, a lack of pushing myself, a lack of a story to tell myself, that feels right, that feels like what I must trust.
Now I'm home for a few days and am challenging myself to maintain faith in my decision to let myself be. There is so much to do at home. There is my easel and paints. There is an appointment at a boutique to make and keep. There are piles of wash. There are cards sitting in stores that I should check on, and yet, these are perfect summer days. The suffocating summer heat of the valley seems over for now. I've loved allowing myself to read for hours which I haven't done all year and have just broken out another mystery and a book group selection. When we return to the mountains Thursday, the scene will be very different. My children and grandchildren and their friends will be coming for the weekend. I'll love being a mother, a grandmother, love sharing the joys of nature with my busy grandchildren, and I'll be looking within myself to see how I'm doing.
Baruch ata adonai...hold my hand as I test the difference between drifting aimlessly, fearful I'll tip into ennui, and just being. I don't know much about just being. I know about planning and being purposeful and doing. Yes. Yes, I hear you. Just trust. Just be. Amen