The emails began pouring in a day or two ago: Watch for the Super Moon, they all said, and so 8:30 last night found me, not at the monthly Improv performance, or at a bar drinking to Cinco de Mayo, but on a neighbor's deck, waiting for the moon.
It's still pretty chilly here, so we were in our down parkas, perched on the edge of a picnic table, looking out over the lagoon, not quite sure where the moon might rise. Plus, there were clouds over Seattle, so we didn't get to see the moon at its largest, that spectacular moment when it first crests over the horizon.
But as we waited in the cold and the sky deepened from light to dark, my neighbor strummed his new ukelele, making up poems of invitation to the moon, and the geese who flew over to warn us away from their babies bobbed their heads in time to his music. It was perfection, actually, even before the orange moon finally peeked out from behind the clouds.
And yet there's still this sadness. Our older daughter came for a visit this weekend (we had a truly lovely time together), and there was a lot of time spent texting and on the phone with our younger daughter (still struggling with a roommate crisis). So I was being mom for much of the time, and rejoicing that the girls and I can communicate now as well as we do. But some other part of me feels lost, bereft, at sea, and it seems to be somehow about art and purpose.
Usually by now I'm well into some new passion, some new project, with a clear goal or an itch to create... something is driving me or pulling me forward. But this year I'm just not there yet; sort of suspended in this weird state, not really creating (though I long to) but just going through the motions. The well is empty, or has gone dry; something is off-kilter, and something worries that there's some destiny beckoning that I just can't seem to see.
It was lovely to talk about that a little with daughter number 1 -- she's a superb listener -- but we both wonder if it's just that so many people whose lives matter to me are in transition that my soul can't help but echo those reverberations.
It's curious to me that one soul can hold it all: the prayers for all who struggle, the hopes for all who face imminent change, the sadness around the empty well, the joy of geese, and ukelele music, good friends, and an orange moon. I feel like the path has slowed somehow, or shortened, and I have to step very carefully; be mostly attentive to where I am and not to what lies ahead. So I'm doing my best to stay present to this. But it feels very odd not to have a goal, a direction.
There was a phrase that struck me in my reading this morning in Jan Phillips' book, Marry Your Muse; something about being a child of the present and mother to the future. So perhaps this is just an unusually long gestation period?