Originally published Tuesday, 15 February 2022.
The end of the week, and I try to discern the state of my heart. There have been pockets of calm—sitting and reading a book one afternoon being the most unusual (and necessary/unproductive) thing I’ve done in a while. And beauty—Justin and I beginning most mornings bundling up and hiking/running in the dark on a trail in the hills near our home. And yet, I feel in flux. Not really here. Not present. Not sure how I am. Nothing is wrong and yet, I confess, I live in a state of perpetual busyness rather than peace. A state that creates turmoil within me. A state that makes me question if my “okay” is, really, “okay.”
I stand now, at my kitchen counter and type this. This is how I do most of my typing—standing. This posture feels comfortable to me because it symbolizes, somehow, that I am not locked into doing just one thing. I can be here, typing these words. And then I can easily jump into another action—cleaning, or chatting with my daughter as she walks through, or catching up virtually with a friend. But, of course, all this feels a bit tiring, this jumping around from one thing to another. It makes my heart, my emotions, feel a bit crowded out. It makes me feel like I am neither here nor there.
And yet something is happening while I write to you. Here I am, standing, seemingly in flux, writing these words, trying to write something that makes some sort of sense—if not to you, then, at least to me—and I am realizing how this task of writing is grounding me. It requires a kind of presence—within myself. The act of writing is bringing me back….here.
This writing right now—knowing that I am writing to you, the beautiful person reading this, brings me—my heart, my mind—to attention. Even while standing, even while claiming I am between things and not committed to any one thing, I am here, talking to you, trying to articulate the value of a moment, an idea: and the task requires something of me that is important, necessary. The act of writing—this amazing challenge of using language to convey thoughts—forces me to become aware of how I feel, what I think. Writing, actually, settles me. It helps root me in the here and now. It both takes me inward and draws me outward—to connection, to community, to truth, to you.
Where we are in a single moment—physically, emotionally, psychologically—can be so undervalued. We miss the moment because we are not present to it. Rather, we are thinking about the future or worrying about the past. We are wondering about the next decision or planning for the unknowns to come.
Let us be here.
Inhaling a deep breath.
Will you pause for a moment with me—just for a few moments, actually, before you go on to the next thing…and let the next thing be the moment you are in? Want to see if writing down a few words to explain this place where you are—this state of your heart—is a way to turn back to yourself, in the best, most beautiful way?
I am leaning in. I am listening. I am here with you. I want to know what it is you have to say. Call yourself to attention now. Let words center you to bring you there, to bring you here.
Share this “here” with the safe and kind women of Loop Poetry Project. We want to gather around with you. We want to be with you. We want to practice trusting that here could be the best place to be.
Fog nestles itself against the house
for me to scoop up in my hands
to create an opening
a door to run through
open to sunshine’s laughter
all the people in their colored jackets
of blue and red and gold
welcome travelers who come seeking
respite, the quiet place of mirth
where heaven’s lodging
is provided in all weather
the tucked away places
as I perch
on my couch
dog hugging my bare feet
and study orange on still branches
watching gray melt away
in morning sun.
This post appeared originally at jennifer.camp