Skip to main content

Toddlers as the True Integrators

Beatrix (who turns four next month) loves to hear and tell stories about when she was a baby. She loves to make reference to something that happened three months ago as “back when I was a baby.” She’s constantly taking in new data about the world and naturally integrating it into her holistic understanding of herself. 

I remember doing that too as a child. Of being fascinated by my personal history and having a crystal clear picture of it. I lost that somewhere along the way, in the amassing of so many experiences, in the exponential-ization of my life. At times I felt I could keep a handle on it through journaling. The years when I didn’t journal feel lost to me in a way. And then I lost the sense of permission to look at my whole life and call it mine, or be able to explain it to myself. 

She recently grabbed my phone to take photos and now I have a treasure collection of things she deemed photo-worthy, including her cute little fox sock

So this very intentional integration has felt like giving myself back to myself so that I can access all of the wisdom I’ve been allowed to live in, accumulate, develop. 

I want to be more like Beatrix when I pick up something new and can connect it to another part of myself. There’s a joy in that. And it makes it solid, less forgettable. 

The next time something in the moment zings to a moment in the past, don’t resist. You aren’t (or don’t have to) live in the past. You can simply connect more of yourself to the present moment. 

Beatrix capturing her own reflection


Popular posts from this blog

My Litquake 2012 Report

I've been avoiding putting this together, because a part of me really doesn't want this year's Litquake festival to be over already.  The other part of me is still cranky-tired, wandering around trying to get to all those projects I said I'd get to after Litquake, and feeling post-Christmas like. In short, this year's Litquake was AMAZING.  Every year has been awesome, but this one was particularly special for me because I got to actually help plan the awesome.  As a volunteer during the festival for the past several years, I definitely felt like I contributed to making each event I helped at awesome, but this year, being on the committee,* I got to witness the tremendous build up to the festival that happens the whole year prior.  The amount of love, sweat and time that goes into it is incredible, and I'm not sure I've ever been part of something so cool.  Which is not to say I'm not still cranky-tired and looking forward to feeling fully recovered.

Love These Days

What love looks like these days in my tiny corner of the world. Or, what I'm loving these days. Books: These have brought me so much delight and escape and hope lately: Housebreaking , by Colleen Hubbard The Swimmers , by Julie Otsuka A Life in Light; meditations on impermanence, by Mary Pipher Rules for Visiting , by Jessica Francis Kane This Time Tomorrow, by Emma Straub Unsheltered, by Barbara Kingsolver Hunt, Gather, Parent , by Michaeleen Doucleff, PhD Podcasts (the links will take you to specific episodes that moved me): Crazy Good Turns HerMoney with Jean Chatzky The Lazy Genius Podcast Mega Moms Don't Have Time to Grieve Unpublished We Can Do Hard Things On Being Death, Sex and Money I was going to add another category here and then I realized all I've been consuming lately are books and podcasts. :) I love a book or podcast recommendation! What have you read or heard lately that has made your heart sing, your world grow, or brought you solace?

What To Expect When You Are Expecting A Pandemic

“When I think about all that has to transpire to get from pregnancy to the birth, I am overwhelmed by time and the unknown. It’s not useful to contemplate. There is only today, and it is good.” I documented my move from ambivalence about parenting, to IVF, to motherhood, as well as all of Year One. I did it longhand because that’s what I did back then. So now, finally, I’m typing all those pages up, in part because of the great What If that living amid a pandemic creates. And I came across this yesterday and it is so true for the current moment, for this, the fifth week of Sheltering in Place. Ways this time is like pregnancy: It can make you fat. It will definitely make you crave near-constant meals and snacks. You will swing from feeling good to anxiety-laden, angry, irritable and back again several times a day. You will want to know how this will all unfold, how hard it will get, exactly how you and your life will be changed. You can’t know any of that. Ther