Today, my daughter taught me how to coordinate my digital calendar. I wanted each new thing I am doing to be color coded, so all visting writer readings and craft talks are red, all meetings lime green, the resident readings sky blue, my own writing deadlines the green of forest. Yoga a bright lilac, birthdays in yellow. Other events like resident arrivals orange. Even after just entering a week, It is like looking a rainbow of sticky note bookmarks, warming to an obsessive heart. Think of where I was just a week ago...
I saw her strategy for balancing time three months ago and instantly coveted it. Then couldn't figure it out, so I called her for help. One of the great joys of the many that are adult children.
She told me you have to make all these different calendars, each one assigned it's own color, write each new event in the appropriate calendar, and then it is read both on the individual and the greater calendar. Which maybe feels like a metaphor for what I am trying to pull off this next year, a new project I might begin.
Her text in response to my thanks, "organization lessons are coming full circle, you to me then me to you. :) " Order amidst disorder being one of my primary childrearing credos.
I was pretty young when I had my kids, still maybe linked to childhood myself. Definitely not a mature adult. Because I was an artist, the blocks, animals, lincoln logs, trucks, doll house people, and legos could all be used to create a city in the living room, in which the three of us (Eva, her twin sister Sarah, and I) would play for hours. And then, because I am writer who also started in the sciences, we'd clean it up, back into the baskets and bins, so something new could be begun the next day.
Secretly, too much chaos was also reminiscent of how out of control I often felt, overwhelmed and scared, while a little order and sanity created the outward illusion of a certain kind of calm. We could make a mess, revel and frolic, and clean it up. Break the "one set of toys at a time" rule employed by so many schools. Screw that, mix it all up, then sort it back out. I was teaching myself the lesson as much as them. Somehow, they are not afraid of either side of that equation. My make believe has become part of their reality, what a wild pear to watch ripen.
Thank god for small favors and a circular universe. So grateful for new knowings. New beginnings. Always, for my girls. One day I'll be like them, what they make and believe now part of how I think about the world.
1. an expression of gratitude. "festivals were held to give thanks for the harvest"