I’ve spent some hours in my life wondering how I ended up such a “big thinker.” A dear friend once said me, when I was on the verge of panic about the idea of becoming a mother and a steward for another human being, “Stacy, why don’t you just turn off that big brain of yours and live your life?”
Good question. And I still don’t have an answer for it. But I do now have a seven-year-old, so somehow I got past that questions.
But, you know, I am who I am, and I’m good with that. And in these last few years of writing, I’ve been so tickled to stumble across so many other people who dwell in life’s big questions, ruminating over the answers. One of the great joys of writing my book (aside from thrilling my parents half to death, even though I had to write honestly about what it felt like to be their child), has been that other ponderers, questioners and seekers have sought me out. You are a main part of the inspiration behind this blog. You are the people who initiate and carry the conversations I want to have.
But that’s not to say that I don’t have fun, too, and give myself permission to dive deeply into life. In fact, I think paying attention to the hard stuff in life, to see the lessons it brings, is part of what allows me to so wholly throw myself into experiencing the other side as well. And right now, I’m pretty focused on two upcoming vacations, so wholly consumed with the fun we’ll have, the photos I’ll take, the hiking and kayaking and swimming we’ll do.
Especially because this year I finally got a handle on what my son has been struggling with in himself. He has a special little mind (as do all of our children), but it turns out his mind is not always his friend, either. He can turn his mind on himself, as he often does, and that’s been a terrifying thing to see, because I thought that was a learned habit, an adult habit. But no, he’s a big thinker, too, already consumed with questions about why we exist and why life hurts and more and more.
But when he’s in nature, he disappears into himself in the best way, consumed by the experiences of being close to the ocean, the earth, the trees, the sky, trails and pathways and adventures and tasks and achievements and simply just being, breathing, seeing.
And so off we’ll go to the Cape we go for Memorial Day weekend. Then off to the Adirondacks in August, our most favorite special place, for camping and paddling and sunsets on the water of our most special Blue Mountain Lake. I am already dreaming about every day we’ll spend there this summer, the adventures and fun, and of course, the sweet relief from the deep thoughts, and instead, just the simple reward of getting to exist on this gorgeous, giant blue-and-green marble.