A gorgeous spring day is coming to a close as I sit down to write this, and I’m trying to leave the window open as long as I can even though the temperature is dropping as quickly as the sun.
We’ve spent the day replacing the flooring in the new laundry room/ kitchenette in my Dad’s house and it’s nice to see a room actually coming together after a few months of doing the kind of renovation work that’s super important but not very visible (did I tell you that Justin and I replaced all the hot water galvanized plumbing in the entire house? Not glamorous at all, but I’m seriously proud of us for figuring it all out without flooding the house!).
The renovations overall are moving slowly but sometimes that’s the way of true progress: steady incremental improvement toward goals at a rate that is actually sustainable.
We head out tomorrow for a quick trip to see family in New Hampshire and then I have some photography work lined up in New Jersey that will keep me there for a couple of weeks. It’s been more than a year since we were last in New England and it will be really nice to have this time with friends and family. We have a more extended trip there planned for the summer, but this short one is what we can manage this time around and that’s okay too.
So much seems to be in process for us at the moment. Working on my Dad’s home one room at time. Slowly transitioning my business into two distinct(ish) entities. Making decisions about where our next move will be and when and whether that will be a more permanent move or whether we want to resume traveling in Kippee for a little while longer. We’ve adopted a new pup who will arrive here from a rescue in Texas at the end of May, so we’re excitedly preparing to welcome our newest family member while still being struck sideways sometimes by how much we miss Tessie.
And between all of these things is the business of life: groceries and books and laundry and runs in the woods and email and the million and one things we fill our days with.
We are in the midst of it all, right now.
We are in the midst of building our lives.
We are in the midst of transition and change. (Good lord, when are we NOT in the midst of transition and change, amiright?)
We are in the midst of waking up each day and doing the best we know how to do with the tools we have right now.
We are in the midst of trying to keep our 697 plates in the air, to hold boundaries, to take care of ourselves, to say no, to say yes, to dig deep, to reach high, to set goals, and dream big, and…and…and…
And sometimes it’s a lot, this being in the midst.
Sometimes it’s lonely or exhausting or disorienting or can leave us feeling untethered as we try to keep track of it all.
Sometimes it can feel like we’re stretched too thin, and doing everything far less spectacularly than we want to, than we’re capable of.
But in the midst there is also space.
They can be hard to find if we aren’t looking. They can be tucked away in tiny slivers of time, in the pauses we notice and the unfurling we allow.
Not every task must be approached with a death grip, after all.
Where can we release just a little? What can wait or not get done to allow a little more room? Where can we slow down? What beauty can we notice, what hilarity can be had?
Joy and slowness are revolutionary acts done right in the midst of our real and everyday lives, while phones ding and dinner roasts and decisions get made.
So I savor the last of this spring day as I fold clothes into a suitcase, feeling the cool breeze slide along my skin. The sounds of the evening settle into the background while I admire the new floors, the work of my hands, and I enjoy the satisfaction of good work well (if far from perfectly) done. I check my camera gear one more time as I mentally run through my checklist of projects and all they’ll require of my creativity and focus.
We are in the very midst of our one and only life right now.
The work of that life might not always be glamorous, but sometimes the important stuff isn’t always as visible as we might wish, sometimes it’s the plumbing we take care of that sets the rest of our work on the solid foundation we need to grow well, to live well, to be in the midst and thrive.