Friday, January 13, 2012

Everything's Changed

My father died two weeks ago and one of my dearest friends from high school—who still lives where we grew up—gave me as a gift, Paul Simon's album Surprise. I listened to it on the drive home after my stay in California (for the memorial service). The whole album is great and most every song spoke to me. I haven't really heard new music is such a long time. I felt lucky for the gift and amazingly there was a song about a father's love. And another song with the line: "Nothing is different, but everything’s changed," which sums up my life right now.

Anyway, this morning I slept late. I am not quite settled into what will be my new writing and teaching routine. Frankly, I still feel tired, so I am trying to be gentle with myself. When the alarm went off at 5:41am, I ignored it and figured since my husband is working the late shift this week, he could take our daughter to school today. On a late day it so helpful to have him drive her since I am getting my daughter ready to go (and still running around in my pjs) while he is leisurely getting himself need to explain further this rather familiar scenario for moms everywhere.

After everyone left I found myself still slightly agitated by the inefficiency of six year olds and the stubbornness of husbands.

[We pause for an interruption: the Husband has radio is on and out come my ignoraphones (BOSE acoustic noise canceling headphones) better than a door when I am trying write. Now we return to our previous programing...]

With everyone out of the house, I was alone thinking of what I needed to do. My usual habit when I am bugged or mad is to get online and surf around the trash magazines: People and US, but then I remembered the Paul Simon line from the album: "Nothing is different, but everything’s changed." I decided to figure out which song that was from. Oh how I love the internet. The song is "Once upon a time, there was an ocean."
Once upon a time, there was an ocean
But now it’s a mountain range
Something unstoppable set into motion
Nothing is different, but everything’s changed
Sitting at my desk, I thought I would write in my journal, but it's in the car and it's cold outside. My desk is a wreck. One of my tasks is to clean it up so that I can get back to my writing life, but not today. Instead I decided that today is the day I get back to this blog, which I started for myself last year. I didn't quite follow through with writing here as I had hoped. No single reason I kept me away, except maybe fear. Somehow for me, blogging is a scary endeavor, kind of akin to streaking: you don't really know who is seeing you naked as you run past.

Getting past the fear of making art is something I definitely want to consider in this blog. While I was at my dad's house I watched the movie The Time Traveler's Wife with my stepmother. A day or two later, I had a moment where life imitates art and I spoke to myself across the years. While sitting at my dad's desk after checking my email, I was looking at his things and thinking about what was important to him. On his shelf was a book I had given him ten years ago: Art and Fear, Observations On The Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking.

I doubt he read it, which I will explain in a different blog post, but for me, that book is the book I need right now. "Nothing is different, but everything’s changed." I have a lot of writing I want to do and hopefully, writing this blog will help support me in my bigger projects.