Project Awesome

Making my life more awesome

Five minutes peace

on May 19, 2013

Big Girl and Small Girl make a lot of noise.  I don’t mean the kind they make as we walk home from nursery and the both shout as loudly as possible as we walk past people’s houses, just for the joy of it.  Not that I blame them.  If you don’t recognise the delight in making noise just because you can, to show you are alive, for the satisfaction and delight of it, you should try it.  Though it is more socially acceptable when you are three.

I mean mental noise.  Static.  Busyness.  I run from one thing to another.  Get up! Get dressed! Get Big Girl and Small Girl dressed! Nursery! Work! Home! TV on while I get supper ready – marshalling food while auditorily supervising their viewing and fighting and being alert to small children falling off the sofa (Did she fall? Was she pushed? The answer usually depends on which child it is on the floor).  Then dashing in pursuit of one child’s whim and then another – drinks, food, toast, ‘where’s my drink?’, things on the floor, tears, a quick rush to the toilet, urgings to finish their tea before we all die of old age, two demands at once, both wanting milk on their cereal first, and to eat *my* sandwich (and then to dissect, reject and return it to me).  Stories and milk and then the precarious path through bath and into bed, trying to brush teeth without provoking the sort of tantrum which can destabilise any hopes of a calm bedtime.  And then I am determined to squeeze just a little time for myself into the evening, before I go to bed, grimly determined to do something I want to, even if what I really want is to sleep, because my life must have more in it than work and children.

And now the children are away and the house is silent and I am hanging up wet washing and my mind is wandering idly.  And I wonder, what is the point? What gives my life purpose?

I find myself close to nihilism.  A pop culture version, rather than any nuanced philosophical position, and I daren’t explore it any further in case I fall off a cliff and can never find my way back.  Like most people, I am living a small life.  One day I will die, and I hope I will have had a positive effect on people.  But they will also die.  Eventually we will all die and the sun will implode and the earth will be sucked into the resulting black hole and my tiny life will not, in all likelihood, matter that much.

While I didn’t base my life around Ex-Husband, that relationship gave me a framework to live in – a journey together, growing closer, learning how to live together and accommodate one another and be happy together.  And I expected that to continue, to work together to bring our children up, to look forward to their adolescence and a return to it just being the two of us and retirement.  That framework is gone and the path I was journeying has ended in a cliff or, slightly less precipitously, a desert, stretching for miles, open and empty.  Or maybe a forest, with lots of possibilities but no obvious paths.  And possibly wolves.

Anyway.  I decided I needed to teach my brain to be quiet.  So I’ve been back to a Quaker meeting.  Sitting in silence is a bit boring, but just now I welcome a little bit of boredom.  I thought about forgiveness, and the parable of Prodigal Son.    I didn’t stop to chat or drink coffee, but I hope that exploring a different way of expressing faith will help me to think about what I believe and what I value, and perhaps to find a new path to journey along for a while.

 

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4 responses to “Five minutes peace

  1. Merlin says:

    The thing about forests, there may be wolves, but there may also be unicorns

  2. seaswift says:

    You might jump off the cliff and fly; find an oasis in the desert; discover an enchanted glade in the forest – especially when you least expect it. There’s magic everywhere.

    And there’s no guarantee that the framework will bring you to the same point. You might think you’re walking along an identical path, only to discover that you both went off in different directions many years ago but hadn’t noticed. 😉

    • I suppose I’m just a little nervous really. Having had such a negative experience recently I find it hard to expect there to be good things out there any more. But actually, I have found so many good things already: maybe I’m already in the forest and I just need to keep looking?

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