Today I saw a friend I had originally met at Meeting. She asked what I am doing these days to nurture my spiritual side, and I said I had spent awhile at UU, and then recently had sort of fallen out of the habit, at least for now.
“I guess I’m just getting better at finding it myself, you know?” I said. She nodded; she totally knew.
There is nothing wrong with a structured spiritual community. And I would not be surprised if the desire to seek it out returns at some point down the line. But I’m just not feeling the need right now. More than that, I am feeling strongly lured by simpler, less formal things. Hiking in Annadel or visiting the creek. Risking waking the kids by sawing my strings late at night. Basking in the joy of my favorite people. Writing music, writing words. Becoming ensnared in my daughter’s lively hazel eyes. Feeling my son’s heavy, sleepy head against my heart, his heartbeat pulsing against my sternum in just exactly the place where all of this delightful opening up is happening.
I often tell my students not to pin their hopes on perfection. Something is bound to go wrong in any performance. Instead, focus is better spent learning to recover as seamlessly as possible from any mistake. I also try to warn them that holding back out of fear only strangles their tone.
Things are still as challenging as ever around here, really. I still lose my temper too often. I still make mistakes, occasionally colossal ones. But I am more graceful in my recovery, more earnest in my approach. I hold back a little less each day, I am sure of that. My tone, like that of my students, is improving.
One day I shall be the sort of mother-wife-teacher-friend I was born to be. And then some. I have potential coiled tightly within me. I am learning to twist the locks.
I am finding it.
(They were squabbling despite attempted interventions, I told them if they were not going to follow my suggestions I was going to leave the room and they could find their own solution. This is what transpired when I peeked back in at them a few moments later.)
Owlet: Mommy, I got back into my nice magic.
Me: Your nice magic?
Owlet: Yeah. Because I have a switch in me, and it goes, and then I slowly get back to my nice magic.