Tuesday, June 4, 2013

nothing unusual

Some days are okay because they're just days. You worked a decent amount, no deadlines met or paychecks cashed, no promotions or records broken, but still, you worked another day towards all those things, if those are the things you want.

You fed yourself or kept others fed around you. And maybe you did your laundry or cleaned up the house, or sat down and payed your bills or maybe you didn't, but that's okay, you can do that tomorrow. Probably a few things made you pause and for just a moment or two you were captured- the smell of a new conditioner in your hair when you took a shower, or a strawberry, or the way you climbed gratefully into bed at ten o'clock, the pages of the book you kept on turning and turning, or a stranger waved to you from their car or the light streaming in through the blinds reminded you for a second of a trip you once took to Spain.

You won't remember any of these things, they're just tiny little points of light that flash for an instant and then they're gone. They're not important, but tomorrow will bring more, and the next day still more, tiny little sparks of pleasure. When you daydream, you may think of big things like meeting and marrying and holding your new infant, or climbing something tall or skiing something steep, seeing your face in a magazine or kissing your boss who is much older than you, or making ten thousand dollars by selling one photo, or finishing medical school and starting your own private practice or traveling to Haiti or becoming a paramedic, finally, after all those hours.

Chances are you won't think too much about tomorrow's little contentments, and that's why they are so wonderful. They're always a surprise and there are hundreds and hundreds of thousand just waiting, still to come. Just for you. Only yours.

Today I worked a full day, I ate and counted the bruises on my legs that appear like little clouds, the aftermath of a weekend on rocks in a windstorm. I took the dog on a long walk and let her swim and chase things, I called my parents for a few minutes, and did some chores but nothing too difficult, and just in general I stayed out of the way of my own life. So often I have my hand gripped on the steering wheel, trying to control everything, trying to force a confession out of every piece of uncertainty around me.

Not today. This evening as I fed the dog I was about to think 'what a useless day' but I stopped myself. It was a good average normal day. There will be buckets of these. There have been buckets of these. I want to stay out of the way more often, let the elaborate behind the scenes levers and pulleys and plans work away, quiet and invisible and relentless, while I read a book or drink some wine with a friend who already knows everything there is to know about me. I want to be curious but patient, capable and prepared but also trusting that everything is marching along as it should.

So I sit here, scratching the dog with one foot, the dog who is fast asleep on the wood floor, she feels that today was good enough, she knows without thinking that tomorrow will be just what it needs to be.

25 comments:

Clark said...

i am close to your father's age and among the first tv generation--i still find wonder, and fear, in blogs and photos and music (like your sister's) that are so easy to find--reading yours this evening, i think of Emily Dickinson whose writing was her blog of the time; one does not write purely for one's own pleasure, even Emily--i participate on facebook as socializing--after years of making photos, i started to print and sometimes post my photo images because i sought validation--this is perhaps why some like writing blogs but i have premonitions about internet control by the big guys, an electronic Fahrenheit 451 or worse--but keep on keeping on Melina, i got your back! for now

Katie said...

I just had two days like this and I have to say I really appreciated them. Your lovely words describe it nicely.

abbliss said...

What a beautifully written comment by Clark. Poetry in the words. My namesake, Abby Bliss, was Emily's best friend. I've always felt a kindred spirit there.

Natalie Burke said...

What a great kind of a day. Beautifully written, as always! :)

Rachel Ruth said...

Ooooo I love everything about this. You put into words exactly how I felt yesterday as I praised the sun being out for the first time in two weeks, walking around city streets that are new to me, and just, well, happy to be alive and on this planet. Plus, pictures of Hometeam make my heart happy :)

Jenna Richards said...

Hi Melina,

I recently lost my job so my life is filled with lots of 'worthless and pointless' days at the moment. Or at least that's how I used to see them. I'm learning to appreciate the time I have to myself, rather than hate it. Every time I teach myself to cook something new, go for a long peaceful walk or jot down notes in my notepad about where I want to be and what I want to be doing in the future - these are all good moments. I intend to make the very most of them until I undoubtedly become a 'wage slave' once again and barely have the time to even contemplate such activities.

Love your blog. xx

Catherine said...

"I stayed out of the way of my own life" Beautiful. I needed to hear that, Mel. We are just back from our year-long road trip and I struggle. Gripping the steering wheel of my life harder. Yes, I do need to stay out of the way a bit more. Thank you for that.

SmithShack71 said...

So good. I love it.
I was checking out a teeny tiny little sunburst coming through the blind this morning. I get completely excited to get into bed at night and fall asleep. I love when the scent of blooms (no idea what they are) are carried on the breeze straight to me on the porch. And so much more. And you're right! We don't think about these things all day and that makes them all the sweeter when they happen. I LOVE that little stuff. It's HUGE!

Have a great one :)

lisanmn said...

I loved this post, Lina! and I am looking forward to more days without deadlines at the end of this week...

Kerry said...

Perfect...just perfect...I'll come back to this. Thank you...this one is a gift to your readers.

6512 and growing said...

"I want to stay out of the way more often, let the elaborate behind the scenes levers and pulleys and plans work away, quiet and invisible and relentless, while I read a book or drink some wine with a friend who already knows everything there is to know about me."

Oh yes, that is beautiful and so so true.

Anonymous said...

Simple. True. Important. A gem.

Katie Jack said...

Your post reminds me of a quote I think of often, by Mary Jean Iron:

Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow. Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day I shall dig my nails into the earth, or bury my face in the pillow, or stretch myself taut, or raise my hands to the sky and want, more than all the world, your return.

I love reading your blog, and think that if we ever met, we would be friends. Except my adventures involve water, not rocks :)

A Girl Without A Name said...

Probably one of my favorite posts of yours. So simple, but yet it speaks so much.

Clark said...

i guess i got lost in my own rhetoric and did not make my point: for Emily Dickinson, unlike HD Thoreau or John Greenleaf Whittier, writing poetry was her one-sided blogging that received little response and recorded her extraordinary expression of her "ordinary" days
one more point to clarify, my support("having your back") is not conditional on you but on my future capabilities

~K said...

Thank you for this simple yet beautiful reminder...

~K said...

Thank you for this simple yet beautiful reminder....

~K said...

Thank you for this simple yet beautiful reminder...

Angela said...

A good, average, normal day is still a good day. Happy that you are having these days. Your words are beautiful.

Angela

Kristen Haun said...

I had an "ordinary day" today too. But mine are always a little unordinary. I had a sweet old man who ended up not making it through the day. He requested some orange juice. I brought it into him, but I never was able to give it to him because he was crashing. As much as I hate I couldn't fulfill his last request, I can't let that be what I think about. I'm using your blog to unwind about my own day... hope you don't mind. His sister was with him. I'm sure everything was how it should be. I came home and had a delicious dinner and a glass of wine while watching my favorite new old sitcom, Frasier, and patiently awaiting when Daphne and Niles get to hook up. Great post. Move soon. xoxo

Kristen Haun said...

I had an "ordinary day" today too. But mine are always a little unordinary. I had a sweet old man who ended up not making it through the day. He requested some orange juice. I brought it into him, but I never was able to give it to him because he was crashing. As much as I hate I couldn't fulfill his last request, I can't let that be what I think about. I'm using your blog to unwind about my own day... hope you don't mind. His sister was with him. I'm sure everything was how it should be. I came home and had a delicious dinner and a glass of wine while watching my favorite new old sitcom, Frasier, and patiently awaiting when Daphne and Niles get to hook up. Great post. Move soon. xoxo

Jess said...

This is one of the best things I have ever read. Thank you. :)

Jess said...

This is one of the best things I've ever read. Thank you. :)

Anonymous said...

Hey Lina - Its Diana, up in the Grand Canyon this summer having a rare afternoon of internet access, wanted to peek in on you and The Wilder Coast. Loved the latest post, really - beautiful writing and fantastically truthful ... this one will stay with me. Sending you love girl. xoxo

Laurie said...

Melinda, such a lovely post. I've been along these same lines of thinking myself. I've been sick from a Stem Cell transplant and not as far ahead in doing what I would like to be doing as I would but am trying to find beauty and grace in the moments of just being and doing "ordinary" things. In the ordinary we often can find beauty. Nice to know other like minded people acknowledge this as well.. peace to you..