I Don't Do Linear
Do you ever have one of those days where you notice who you are? I'm not sure I can really explain this but I was walking out to my car this morning when I noticed that my big pots of last year's geraniums are decidedly leggy and past their prime.
And suddenly, I stopped short and thought, "Good Gravy, I'm a person who keeps pots of geraniums! How did that happen?"
Because my mom has always had pots of geraniums and I never liked them much. For one thing, I think geraniums stink and for another, they just never look like abundance to me and that's what I like my pots of flowers to be. I like a huge overflowing cascade of rich color --sheer decadence of texture and (non-stinky) blooms. (Granted, this is Texas so they only look like that for about four days before they start the slow lingering death in the heat, no matter how much water and love and plant food I give them.)
But I digress. (Great Balls O'Fire, I am a person who has a hard time staying on point!) I don't really like geraniums and yet I have two big pots of them in my driveway by the back gate.
So, then I got into my silver Honda Odyssey (Jumpin' Jehoshaphat, I am a person who drives a mini-van!), which is so common here in Austin that I used to have to write my kids' names on the window in shoe polish so they didn't get into the wrong silver Honda Odyssey when I picked them up from school.
(Okay, so I have to tell this story, which I don't think I've ever published before, although I've told this story a LOT so if you've heard it before, just go on about your business. (It's a digression, I know, but that's just who I am.) When the van was about two months old, I had both kids in tow and had gone grocery shopping. I came out to find that someone had hit my van, putting a big old dent in the back right bumper.
I just can't tell you how upset I was. My van is the first brand-new car I've ever driven and I told my husband at the time that it was just too much pressure. But it turned out to be actually cheaper for us to finance a new car than to finance one that was a year old, given how these Hondas hold their value, etc. etc. (That, my friends, was a digression within a digression --are you guys keeping score at home?)
Anyway, my van had a huge dent in the back fender and the person who hit me didn't even leave a note! I was almost crying. And loving little Jane was about 18 months old or so and she kept saying, "Someone hit da new van, Mama? And no note?" She was very concerned. I was looking with such suspicion at the cowboy parked next to me (since his door was open and resting on the front of the van while he unbuckled his baby from his car seat.) that he said, "I'm trying to remember if I was here when you got here."
"I don't think you were," I said, my voice positively dripping with tears. We stood there forlornly, trying to figure out what to do. But, well, I had to get those groceries home and my kids out of the sun so I pressed the remote to unlock my car and it DID unlock.
About two spaces up from the silver Honda Odyssey with the dent.
I'd been mourning the wrong van.
I thought the cowboy was going to have coffee come out of his nose, he was laughing so hard. He's probably STILL telling that story.)
Anyway, I kept doing things all morning and wondering how I first came to be a person who does these things. Does that make sense? Like, I took the recycling and the composting out. (Jeepers! I'm a person who composts and recycles!) I knitted on my sock. (Great Caesar's Ghost! I'm a person who KNITS!) I went and visited my beautiful friend Laura. (DUDE, I am a person who calls Laura a friend!)
I realized that a lot of this life I'm living just sneaked right up on me when I wasn't paying attention. I didn't plan to be living this way at 42. I didn't plan to drive this car or look this way or grow geraniums but you know what? Other than the geraniums, it's a pretty spectacular life. I think maybe I need a bumper sticker that says, "I Don't Do Linear."
It just occurs to me, as I'm writing this and feeling all smooshy about my life and the non-linear blessings of it all, that I now have to go pack for my family because we are going to the coast for the long Labor Day weekend. (I'm the kind of person who goes to the coast! In her silver Honda Odyssey! With her husband and two children.)
(Holy COW, I have two kids! I need to lie down!)