Loose and tight

This is a catch-up post. An, “oh, crap–the blog’s been down for weeks and weeks (months?) and I couldn’t even fix that, much less write anything because: Life” post.

So, that’s not entirely true: I have been doing some writing, but on pieces bigger than those I usually post here. I might try publishing them somewhere else, eventually. But I might not. Hard to say.

Hard to say because I have decided that this stage of life is just one big, fat, second adolescence, with many of the same issues and questions: What am I going to do next? Who am I? Who do I want to be? How do I want to spend my time? (And what in the HELL is happening to my body?)

It is nicer than the teen-age go-round with such existential angst in that I have foundational answers to some of the questions. I know what I value and what I like and (most importantly) a whole lot of what I don’t need to tolerate or worry about. It’s a bummer that when I emerge from this transformative stage, unlike the earlier one, I can be pretty sure that my body is going to be in worse shape (rather than better) than it was going in.

Of course, I’m attempting to wrestle with all of these questions in the context of a world that feels increasingly unfamiliar and unstable. That is not what I long thought it to be. It’s hard to know what matters, really, when it comes to deciding how and who to be.

But, meanwhile, the days pass by and: Life.

Late spring and early summer was full of work and family and friends and thoughts and feelings–oh, so many feelings–about all of those things. About time, and love, and loss, and the meaning of life. It’s been huge, and also small. So much depends upon a red wheelbarrow, and all that.

Ah, who am I kidding? There is no catching up, not really. There’s just picking up–a thread, a conversation, ourselves. That’s all I’m really doing here. Picking up a thing I had to set down for awhile. Picking it up again so I don’t forget what I’ve got.

Yeah…

8 thoughts on “Loose and tight

  1. Marian says:

    I’m so glad you’re back. And yes: catching up is impossible, but picking up is completely doable. I can relate to the characterization of this stage of life as a second adolescence, and I’m looking forward to seeing what you come up with 🙂 .

    • Rita says:

      Hi Marian,
      For some reason, I never got notification of any replies to this post. So, I wasn’t ignoring you. Guess I need to practice picking up, too. Oy.

  2. TD says:

    Rita, This: “Hard to say because I have decided that this stage of life is just one big, fat, second adolescence, with many of the same issues and questions: What am I going to do next? Who am I? Who do I want to be? How do I want to spend my time? (And what in the HELL is happening to my body?)” … was so funny to me because that’s exactly where I am too!

    This week, I was literally crying to wash out the toxic thoughts in my mind of all those questions. Then as I calmed myself, I laid in my bed and the visual of myself in my minds eye was of a 12 year old little girl sitting on the top of a wooden picnic bench with white knee high socks, one a bit saggy of course. Seriously, that’s what I saw and then I thought “Well, at least I don’t have to deal with having my period and cramps! And I don’t like boys anymore either.”

    Second adolescence. Ha! That’s how I saw myself too!!

    Today, I noticed that if I have my arm a certain way, my skin looks like a dried up raisin. And when did THAT happen, exactly?!?

    I am happy to see you today in my email playground. 🍔🍔🍔🥤🙄

    • Rita says:

      Hi TD,
      I didn’t not mean to neglect this response–I didn’t see it until just today. This made me smile, so–happy to see you today in my playground, too. I appreciate the reminders for the ways in which this second adolescence is definitely better than the first one! Despite the prune skin. Periods are over-rated; I bet Margaret and all her friends wondered why they’d been in such a hurry for them to commence. Too bad Judy Blume never let us know how that all turned out for them. Speaking of skin that surprises you–for me it’s the hands. Sometimes I glance at mine and see my grandmother’s.

  3. Kari Wagner Hoban says:

    God I am so glad to see you again.
    Also, I understand this paragraph:

    Hard to say because I have decided that this stage of life is just one big, fat, second adolescence, with many of the same issues and questions: What am I going to do next? Who am I? Who do I want to be? How do I want to spend my time? (And what in the HELL is happening to my body?)

    WAY TOO WELL.

    Also, I love Amos Lee.
    And I love you too.
    Kari Wagner Hoban recently posted…!A la Chingada! Estoy Comiendo Tater Tots- Parte CuatroMy Profile

    • Rita says:

      I love you, too. I know you know. Sorry I’ve been such a poor correspondent this summer. Life. (I know you know that, too.)

  4. Kate says:

    I’ve been on vacation or recovering from vacation the last few weeks, but was so glad to see your blog alive again and an updated post from you.

    I’m embracing a bit of the adolescent stage myself as Violet begins entering her own. I’m watching in awe while trying to not miss my baby girl too much. (As much as I don’t miss the exhaustion if those hands on younger years, I do miss the special magic of them.)

    Life. It just doesn’t slow down. I’m glad we have our blogs to share it together!

    • Rita says:

      Clearly it doesn’t slow down. Life. “recovering from vacation” makes me smile because I always have to recover from vacation. Hope you are feeling sufficiently rested from your “rest.” (I think vacation is actually more work than usual for moms if it’s a family vacation.)

      As for adolescent children and missing children and all that: Parenting adolescents was much more challenging for me than parenting kids. Part of it was that I missed the kids they once were a lot. And adolescence is…uncomfortable, in so many ways, for everyone involved. It’s supposed to be, I know. Breaking up and away always is. But, now that we’re through that, I even miss the adolescents my kids once were. I see pictures of them at that stage and feel nothing but tenderness for those striving, struggling, growing beings they were then. And for the mom I was, too.

      As you said, “Life. It just doesn’t slow down.” (You should put that on a t-shirt.)

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