When my husband proposed, it was very simple. There were no hidden friends, no flash mob dance scenes. There was a beautiful view overlooking Nashville at night, and it was the anniversary of our first real date, but nothing else really set it apart from any other date – until he told me to close my eyes for a minute and when I opened them, he was on one knee with a ring in his hand.
It’s a moment I will remember forever, the words, the place, the champagne a waitress brought over to us after I, very obviously, said yes. Then there were a thousand phone calls to all the people who already knew (I swear my friends were the BEST secret keepers! What even??). It was magical and beautiful, and very intimate, and it changed the trajectory of my life forever.
I have nothing against big proposals, or even big promposals…
(Actually, I think it’s sort of ridiculous and a hella lot of pressure to put on a 16 year old boy to orchestrate the most magical moment in a young girls life, a girl he’ll probably not see again after graduation. But I digress)
…but I do question the idea that for something to be important or life altering it has to be a large scale event, as though louder music and more people in costume make a moment more memorable instead of the moment itself being memorable.
I’ve thought about these things many times over the last few weeks as I contemplated using my summer as an anchor point for blogging again. The first five months of this year were a blur of travel and training, prepping and launching, not to mention my full time job as Mom taxi. I arrived in May worn out and strung out. So I made a pact with myself: other than our annual trip to the beach – literally the most relaxing 10 days of every year – I am not going anywhere this summer.
I’m not traveling, prepping, planning, participating, making food for, being responsible for or answering for anything –well anything but the dogs, the dogs can stay.
I am creating self care routines which include such exciting things as reading books, taking vitamins, daily exercise, meditation…and 750 words written every day. Ah see, you knew I was coming to a point eventually.
Writing 750 words every day means drawing from a decidedly – and intentionally – small scale existence and extracting meaning through being rather than orchestrating meaning through elaboration; in other words, finding the story in the mundane instead of creating an epic thrill ride.
I’m determined that summer 2016 is going to be both memorable and magical not because it’s big and loud or flashy, but because it’s a season of creating my own happiness. Last year I deconstructed..well..almost everything: faith, myself, relationships, church, scars, beliefs. I’m down to the foundation now, the non-negotiables. I’m uncovering who I am and rediscovering what I really believe – before I believed I had to be someone else so everyone would like me.
I believe clean slates are magical. There’s nothing more promising than a new page, or a new year. They thrum with potential and possibility. They are momentous because of what they may become, not because they come accompanied with glitter and fan fare.
Just like the day I said yes to my husband, this summer is both simple and unassuming, as well as pivotal and sacred. Even though I may not leave home very often if I can help it, there is no limit to the places I can go now that I know the direction I am walking.
This is my simply magical summer plan, unfolding in the quiet moments and the home spaces. I’m looking for the ordinary goodness of a thunderstorm and a good book, of a panting dog after a morning walk and the mundane discipline of healthy routine. I’ll be writing about the little ways we make profound changes in our lives and in the world simply by being who we are.
If simply acknowledging the ordinary beauty of being alive and aware in this incredible world isn’t magical, I don’t know what is.