This Space

This space where we spend time gives me peace. Dark and cramp, in a tent in a backyard campsite.

Simple slumber on the ground with our children, their quiet breathing and bodies shifting position as they sleep.

This quiet time and place gives me peace. Thankful for this time and place. So simple, necessary during this quietly turbulent time.

World turned upside down, struggle to stay even and balanced; no big deal for some; sometimes it feels ok; most of the time it feels surreal; fundamentals of life shifting, unsure, existential threat.

How to adapt? How to keep our kids protected and secure, how to help them, us feel safe?

Steady, focus on the basics, rely on repetition and love, rely on love. From this space I can work; from this space I can know; from this space I can live; from this space I am sure I will find peace.

Peace in this space.

Let It Ride

When the kids want to play, if you can, let it ride. It’s a fine line, how far they go, but if they’re ok, let it ride.

Just recently I was thinking that might be a game on.

I don’t take the time too often to watch sports, and I thought that might be nice. But the kids were all playing in the front room where the tv is…so I nixed the sports viewing pretty quick.

They’re having a good time. Let it ride.

It’s a mentality that might be well applied often in a variety of context. The term is used in gambling, I think. When you win some portion of the bet, and rather than take the winnings and stop playing, you let the winnings “ride” and play again.

Let it ride.

I’m no gambler, but I like the term. I use it — and maybe lots of people do so – to convey, “let things remain the same…”.

Let it ride.

Maybe a bit of deeper wisdom there too. Often we seek change. Maybe human nature: wanting new stimulation, something fresh, better, different, more. Change is inevitable, after all.

But maybe sometimes it’s better to resist that impulse, maybe initially, to evaluate where you are, what you have, the “pros and cons” of changing X Thing…and maybe sometimes just letting it be. Sometimes maybe it’s better to let the Status Quo stand as is. Let the current circumstances or situation prevail.

Let it ride.

Edge

This word rolling through my head, several images, thoughts coming to mind.

EDGE.

Hmm, maybe it’s the opposite: Several images, thoughts rolling through my head, and this word comes to mind.

Another dinner gone sideways, everyone animated about things mostly other than the plate of food in front of them. Stumble, struggle through — I do, everyone else on their own — and then I’m in the kitchen doing dishes while the meal-time silly melee continues.

I’m on the edge.

Should I be a hard-ass about all this behavior that’s so counter to what seems reasonable to me? Or should I just roll with it, kids will kids, last weekend before school (no lie though, it’ll be the same behavior next week too), everyone having fun, Dad, don’t be a grump…

So I sit on the edge for a while wit h those feelings, a few seconds anyway…then I think of The Edge, and U2, and the album “Rattle and Hum” — that proves to be my salvation. I grab my headset, find the album on Apple Music, and let it fly. As the songs tick through, as I wash the dishes, I care less about being on the edge.

Music has that effect on me, at least it did tonight. It took me away from the edge; it took me to a place thinking less about the struggle that was going on in my head; it took me back thirty years to how I felt about the music I was listening to, swept me up back in time, away from the edge.

Until next time.

yout

In Parallel

One of my favorite concepts from geometry, imagery still floats in my head all these years, decades later. Parallel lines drawn with a ruler and pencil, precision work. Must have my dad’s influence when I was a kid; he was a math teacher.

I think of “parallel” in other context:

Often we work in parallel with others; most certainly we live parallel lives with those around us, our parents, partner, children, friends, neighbors.

How does that go? How should it go?

Maybe we live in parallel with our faith too, with God, whatever we think, imagine, believe God to be. What I mean by this is, there are whatever those ideals are around God, and then there’s our practical, day-to-day living and applying of those ideals.

Parallel, but maybe we cross over, cross lines, lose that orientation from time to time. Intersect, good or bad? Does it have to be good or bad? Can it just be?

Can we just be, in parallel, with those around us? My experience says, it’s lonely if we’re parallel all the time. I’d rather intersect.

12 days of Christmas and the Last Weekend Before School Starts

The kids and I, we’ve been camping in the back yard every weekend since the 4th of July. It’s been great fun. I’m delighted they say “Yes!” every weekend I’ve asked them if they want to do it again.

It’s a great example of their maturity, dealing with the sounds and mild discomfort and sometimes spookiness of it all.

As we mark this last weekend before school starts, I’m celebrating 9, 7, and 6; celebrating their adventure, their growth, their random requests that prove to hold new inspiration.

Example? Our youngest wanted to sing a Christmas song last night. So we did. Over and over and over.

What better song to sing in August than “The 12 Days of Christmas”…and maybe for the first time in my life, I sang it all the way through after a few tries without looking at the lyrics!

“12 drummers drumming 11 pipers piping 10 lords a leaping nine ladies dancing eight maids a milking seven swans a swimming six geese a laying five golden rings four calling birds three French hens two turtle doves and a Partridge in a pear tree.”

I did it!

🙂

Moonlight

Moonlight, bright light, midway in the sky. Bright light begins the journey east to west, near full, light the way.

Six year old says it shines because of the sun, reflecting, her sister told her so. Bright light in the night sky, light the backyard campsite, keep us company throughout the night.

Keep us company throughout the night, show us the path home through the darkness, faint light on the flat stones, the way home.

Where is home? Under the moonlight, with my family, every night.

Some Devil, Some Grace

It’s a particular feeling, a particular strength needed, when your partner is struggling.

When she struggles, it effects you, no wonder; how can it not? Those who don’t feel it, maybe they don’t feel, the same.

When your partner struggles, seems put out, spun out, you’re on the outs too. He doesn’t want what you want. What does he want? Maybe it’s not clear.

What is clear? The devil’s in the room, maybe right there next to you, you might feel, hear his breath. Shallow, steady, patient.

What to do? Dread might drip in, slow drip, drops, relentless. “Get behind me, Satan,” that’s a good start. Don’t accept the negative, the poison in the room.

Take the High Road, Grace, find it, where is it, it’s there, faint, hard to find maybe, but it’s there. Take that road, you know the one, know the way.

Be friendly, be pleasant. Say please, and thank you, and if you please. Not insistent, instead, consistent.

The High Road, choose it, Grace, even when slighted, when you get the silent. Treatment? Be the treat, not the trick. Don’t be tricky, be steady, instead expect of yourself, be your best self, each hour, day.

Make it that way. You meet the Devil, answer with Grace.

GOOD.

Connected?

Seems to me this idea’s come up before, seems to me it’s fundamental, being connected.

It’s a technical thing on the one hand, “…VPN reconnecting…” tells you how fast you’ll need to work to catch-up, seconds, minutes tick by, the birds chirping in the yard a gentle solace.

My children’s images on my screen, telling me it will be ok; ok overall, but as the moments tick by, a reboot looms, save your work.

Connected, reconnected, I long for the touch, a sense of belonging and place and purpose. Not sure why it’s so important, so integral to calm, satisfied peace of mind.

Weekend’s better for this; better to hone the skill to get there at will, connected. Feel it when we’re together, falling asleep together, waking up together, laughing together, smiling, living together.

Longing, searching, yearning, wanting, to understand, how to connect. My family the salve, time granted, invested.

Another summer weekend, another Friday, Saturday night camping with the kids in the back yard.

Together. CONNECTED.

Lyrics Post: “Winds of Change” – Scorpions

Thirty years ago this song came out. It spoke to the times, spoke of change, spoke of one person’s experience, mirroring the feelings of many. Including me. I was deep in that time of change. I had walked the same paths. Wondering. Longing. Wanting.

Thirty years later, the song still captures that time, that hope, that belief that change is possible.

And then I heard this news: there’s rumor that actually the CIA wrote the song’s lyrics, and fave the song to the band to help move along the end of the Soviet Union. Verdict’s still out on that one!

But whether written by the CIA or rock musicians from Hannover, the message is the same:

Change is possible for the better. Winds of change guide us. Let us follow together.

Winds of Change

I follow the Moskva
Down to Gorky Park
Listening to the wind of change
An August summer night
Soldiers passing by
Listening to the wind of change

The world is closing in
Did you ever think
That we could be so close, like brothers
The future’s in the air
I can feel it everywhere
Blowing with the wind of change

Take me to the magic of the moment
On a glory night
Where the children of tomorrow dream away
in the wind of change

Walking down the street
Distant memories
Are buried in the past forever
I follow the Moskva
Down to Gorky Park
Listening to the wind of change

Take me to the magic of the moment
On a glory night
Where the children of tomorrow share their dreams
With you and me
Take me to the magic of the moment
On a glory night
Where the children of tomorrow dream away
in the wind of change

The wind of change
Blows straight into the face of time
Like a stormwind that will ring the freedom bell
For peace of mind
Let your balalaika sing
What my guitar wants to say

Take me to the magic of the moment
On a glory night
Where the children of tomorrow share their dreams
With you and me
Take me to the magic of the moment
On a glory night
Where the children of tomorrow dream away
in the wind of change

Writer(s): Klaus Meine