I like having a baby in my life because babies grow. Babies become new people over and over. Maybe there are some hard wired characteristics but even they expand and contract. In the three months while I've been gone my not quite two year old neighbor has gone from just being able to walk without holding on to something to being able to go down the steps and dancing. Her language skills have developed. She's always been dexterous but even that skill has sharpened. Her personality has filled out. Deepened somehow.
In my twenties I used to take some kind of psychedelic once a year to reboot my thinking. I'm not sure if it really worked but it was interesting. And I moved around a lot. Being somewhere new made it possible to be someone new.
I have changed in the past few years but I'm not sure the changes have been useful. I've always processed emotionally by talking. I feel like I used to be someone who got calls. People called. To talk. That's just not true anymore. People are busy. I guess. And I find myself reticent to reach out. I'm not even sure why except I hate that feeling of needing to talk and hearing the busy-ness in someone's voice. I still love talking. I just don't seek it out or rely on it. I've been hurt and resentful about that but it was a habit that got broken. I think that part might be good.
I fully intended to come home and sink into a Sims coma. I was going to live on delivery and anything that did not need to be cooked. I have played a bit but I have little projects in the apartment that pull me out of the game. Reclamation projects. I don't mind being pulled out. I haven't cooked anything more than scrambled eggs.
Something feels looser.
I've been drawn to images of Buddha. I like the presence. The being-ness. The stillness.
Mom lives in a retirement community and someone, either there or one of her friends is always sick. There were several deaths while I was there. On her refrigeration door, in the middle of the frog magnets, is a Do Not Resuscitate order. It's a perfectly smart thing for an older woman who lives alone to have but it's unnerving. In my darker moments I have thought about having DNR as a tattoo. Being there, where the phone calls came in about who was in the hospital or the grave, made something real. In a way. Something about change being inevitable. Even when it feels impossible.
I used to think it was good that she was there with people in her age cohort. People with shared interests. Now I'm not sure. It seems imbalanced. It seems like there needs to be babies around.
I heard Jill Bolte Taylor on the radio the other day. She was describing an experiment in which people were told to watch kids passing a ball back and forth. At some point a gorilla walks across the screen and most, maybe all, of the people didn't see it. That's my big fear. Being so stuck in a habit that I don't see the gorilla.
When my goddaughter was growing up I noticed the changing. It continued all through her years in college. Every time she came home for a break she was someone new. Now in her twenties she is still changing.
And by change I mean growing. Developing. Casting off habit. Becoming.