Monday, June 3, 2013

monday thoughts: keeping it interesting

Jennifer Ament, Mask (from Serena and Lily)

I was recently talking to a friend from college who has known me well for a really long time. She writes about art for a living—and thinks deeply about art (and many things)—and she's always great to talk to about art, style, family, feminism, and life in general. She lives across the country, but we manage to see each other for big life events (weddings, babies), and we check in on the phone every couple of months. And the other night as we were catching each other up, she said something about her own situation that really struck me. In her words: Life is good. The challenge is to keep it interesting.

Tom Moglu collage

Her life is a little different from mine (she works full time and has one toddler), but she summed up exactly how I feel. Life is good, and the challenge is to keep it interesting. My life is indeed very good; I feel so grateful and lucky that I don't have to worry about all the basic stuff. I should take more time to be grateful, in fact. And as for the keeping-it-interesting part: I don't know what adjective I'm reaching for, but I have a sense of time passing, of needing to remember moments, of "this" being "it." Charlie riding his bike ahead of me down our hill at dusk, past rabbits crouching in the grass and the sweetest honeysuckle bushes all around. Tessa riding a horse on the hottest afternoon of the year so far. My kids joke-fighting in the back seat of the car as we wait out a thunderstorm in the grocery-store parking lot. This lemonade-stand sign, and the sight of my kids pouring from a sticky pitcher and counting quarters:

Just as I don't want to take things for granted, I don't want to let life be boring, either. (The flip side of appreciation is being satisfied with too little.) And I don't want to let myself be nothing more than a mom overly identified with her kids. So the challenge is the balance: gratitude and appreciation, coupled with newness and change and...keeping it interesting.

Serena Mitnik-Miller

What does this mean in concrete terms? Should I reach out to someone from my past? Should I take a class, or a trip alone? I'm always looking for ways to make this blog relevant—to myself and to my readers (few as they may be).

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