First Day of Spring: A Superbloom of Ideas (Some Barefoot)
On my mind: today’s vernal equinox, when daylight and dark are the same length of time. One idea bounced into another, bringing up the phrase “All things being equal” (caeteris paribus) . . . which words were then was shown the door by my mildy concussed noggin (more on that later), as it’s a philosophical-rabbit-hole sort of phrase, and I’ve got neither the time nor mental acuity to enjoy that labyrinth this afternoon.
On my mind: it is the first day of spring, not fall, but falling and bruising are what’s been happening around here:
I enjoyed a presentation last week on literary “defamiliarization” — when authors illuminate those times when even familiar places/people/things become unfamiliar . . . how we can be strangers in places/roles/relationships we “should” know very well . . . all of this harking back to last Tuesday when my own home became unfamiliar to me at approximately 5:32 a.m., and in the dark my head whacked itself again a bathroom wall/corner really really really hard.
“Haste makes waste” is another cliche, applicable to my normal scurrying around in the morning packing snacks, lunch, water, laptop . . . trying to beat the freeway congestion by leaving the house by 5:45 am . . . hasting, and then: wasting my forehead, with the resulting bump quickly filling with a boatload of blood, which gravity encouraged to decorate my eye orbit all week long, prompting all kinds of lame attempts at humor by friends, family, co-workers (but even worse, stares-without-comment) as I went about my Busy. Day.
Busy. Too busy. “Sorry, I’m too busy.” It’s a contemporary affliction I am ashamed to admit I have given in to all too often.
Since my body and heart and soul realize that, they (all one of me) wanted to make sure Head got that memo. As I lay on the floor, palm pressed to my right eyebrow, waiting for the gush of blood which (whew) never came, I had what would have been a “come-to-Jesus” moment, if it weren’t for the fact that He already came to me a long time ago:
How can I slow down and Be (not stuck in the mud, but pausing there on purpose to luxuriate in its gooey reality).
So I’ve not been running, that being an activity not encouraged for mild concussants (I made that word up, and like it. It reminds me of how my mild concussion makes me want to cuss.)
Wandering through the local superbloom is what I’ve been doing, taking pictures, taking notes, inhaling the purple intoxicated air that hangs over the trail near lupines and thick-leafed yerba santa.
Ankle-deep Santiago Creek (how rare to have a creek flowing in Orange County! How delightful!) provides lots of space for reflection as well.
And this perfectly timed blog post on Feldenkrais and balance and resilience by Sarah Kowalski made my day today. Here’s a bit:
Being able to rebound and rebalance oneself is an integral part of mental, emotional and physical well-being and is at the core of resilience. From an embodied perspective, balance is a physical experience of being able to stand up and move around without falling over. What most people don’t think about, however, is that balance is not being rigidly fixated to a certain position, but rather entails falling off center and recovering as quickly as possible. For example, even in a simple activity like walking, we throw ourselves off balance and fall down for a moment until we catch ourselves with the leg swinging forward.
The Feldenkrais Method of Awareness Through Movement Lessons highlight the experience of falling off center and recovering. They bring awareness to the experience of balance as the absence of rigidity by constructing movement sequences in which students are called to catch oneself, steady and move on. Because of the type of awareness cultivated, students can also realize where they have mental and emotional rigidities that cause them to fixate in one place and fall down. When students can develop more optimal physical balance with detailed awareness of its sensations and components, it translates into more cognitive and emotional balance.
Moving along: It IS THE FIRST DAY OF SPRING! How I love the late light, the promise of long summer days . . . my favorite time of year when I was a child. And still is.
When I was a child? My mom, being newly 90, is in the mood to get rid of stuff, so this weekend I got a pile of old photos that included by birth announcement:
I don’t know how the years snuck past, but now I’m a grandma of seven (as of last week):
The older grandkids like to go crazy with photo-editing apps on my ipad; I like them, too, for the fun way they take the years (i.e. wrinkles) artfully away without having to resort to the plastic surgeon’s more-permanent-but-kinda-scary methods.
OK. I guess that is kind of scary in its own way.
But it’s spring! In my heart, yard, and local wild hills!
Happy Muddy, Flowery, Springing Trails!