Wednesday, December 21, 2016
The time of year for threes
Undaunted, I proceeded to sit in the living room with the dogs and music going full-blast, savoring my bit of time while the chops cooked, occasionally dancing to a tune. My movements seemed to fascinate Abby--the baby of the three and she also danced around me in excitement. Even though there are 3 dog beds in the living room, all 3 of them finally settled on one together. It might be a metaphor for life.
I told my cousin the other day--as she and her sister have also been doing parallel research on her father's side of the family as well as her mother's who is the sister to my mother--that the more I find, the more I am seeing my "carefully constructed identity" take on new meanings and new clarity.
The ancestors tend to have that effect on me. Since I take it as true that life is a construct, in that we "make it up" for how we understand everything, I find myself wondering what I might have constructed had I known some of this earlier. The thing about assimilation of new information is that generally, if we can fit it into what we already know, we do not have to spend much time with it. If not, and we find we have to develop new information and meanings in order to accommodate this new knowledge, it takes a little longer and might even be uncomfortable or difficult.
I find myself these days listening to women who are near my age or older, as they speak about their experiences of constructing lives and meaning in a time of "traveling uncharted terrain." Several years ago, I heard an interview done with Patti Scialfa, and last night, I ran across it again. At the time, she was 54, and said she wanted to write songs that reflected her in this stage of her life. I think for many of us who are reaching this point, and we are now all 10 years beyond the date of the interview, there is a certain nostalgia for some of the moments of our younger selves, while at the same time there is a sense of anticipation for what might lie ahead.
Can we be comfortable with that? Can we be comfortable with being uncomfortable with the new identities that may be forged from these transitions?