Pondering the Pond
June 24, 2014
I woke up one morning last week with the sensation that something had changed, maybe just a shift in the sea bed shelf, but I knew it. I have been in a transitional phase for a while now. I wouldn't call it a slump, rather a recognition of a fork in the road, a sense that I need to pull off the interstate to check the map before I reach the mystery destination. I drank my coffee on the patio while watching the reflections of daybreak clouds in the pond. It was hypnotic, ever-changing, how fleeting they were. A mallard flew over the pond and I thought, "That exact duck will probably never fly the exact course at the exact moment across that skyline again" and, ad nauseam, "I am the only one that saw it the exact same way." I believe the pond's lesson for me today was adaptation. Time does move on and nothing stays the same. This little patch of pond has taught me so much.
I know I've mocked the people who take care of the pond ducks (excessively, but this is my last dig, I promise) and yet I still learn from them. We all do what we do to get us through that next minute, to keep from wasting it and hopefully learn from it.
Ok, "Daisy" is the lady duck who was raised in a Wal-Mart blue swimming pool in my neighbors garage. She really doesn't know much "bout birthin no babies" but nonetheless, every day she and "Daffy" have a little fun and she lays an egg. She really doesn't know what you do to protect it though. Sometimes she lays them on hills, and in the water. Each day her egg is broken by a squawking crow, or osprey for breakfast yet she refuses to bind her womb to avoid the pain.
Maybe I need to embrace staying in the moments; the dull ones, painful, scary, and anxious ones longer. I looked at the reflections in the pond again. For a brief moment, I realized that we are actually spinning 1000 miles an hour on earth's axis. It was unnerving. I've only had a few of these particular moments (pre-wine and sunset) and it's a good thing. It's kind of like watching the second hand on a watch and then having a panic attack because we wasted our moments watching the second hand on the watch.
To remove the thoughts of my fleeting-ass time on earth, I decided to go to Pinterest and mindlessly fumble through "happy happy" stuff. The first photo that came up was of a beautiful bubble. I typed in bubbles and got pages of beauties. I realized bubbles are not nearly as significant as what is encapsulated in them. Alright, I give up. I am just giving this day up to serendipity. I'm sure there is acupuncture or a hormone cream that would alleviate these symptoms, but I think I'll just muster through and see what I can learn.
I thought of my lifespan theoretically in the form of those tiny bubbles. Encapsulated in those little bubbles and time capsules are the memories of the meal we just ate, the child that ran through the room waving a wand, the husband rubbing his belly, the child young, the child married, the child with child. The same bubble is in the room of a dying loved one, an argument, or any of life's maladies. I wish I had stayed in those bubbles a little longer, recognized them, all of them, and dealt with them. Instead, I'd rush to touch it, to burst it, to end the moment. Why, because it must end in order to move to the next moment, right?
I don't want to live so safe that I don't get goose bumps anymore, that the hair on my neck doesn't raise, or that I don't have a frog in my throat or a longing. I want to own a truthful connection to my emotions, good or bad. I want to connect the dots on a Dalmatian, cry those tears, face those fears. I don't want to leave anything behind, zilch, nothing, no traces. Blood on the ground, air clawed, and heart spent. I won't be leaving brick and mortar as inheritance to anyone, hopefully, just memories that will encourage others to be kind, laugh a lot, and look to the heavens (if that's your trajectory.)
I went back to the patio to look at the pond. Another duck glides in. It's not his pond, but for the moment he owns the same vista's, air, and gravity as the person who has the deed. I am going to strive harder to live with the earth as I have to own something on it. Yeah, this pond might be the death of me or, it just might be the life of me.