I didn’t write yesterday. I couldn’t.
I stared at the screen and tried to find inspiration, but in the end, I just went and took a nap.
Some days are like that, yes?
Days when your well is empty and uninterested in being filled. Days when your spirit knows that the next giant wave is coming so she’d better sit and take a breath or two before it does.
Today, I have to pack up the kitchen and my office. The last two rooms to get the big box-up. And tomorrow, we get the keys to our new home.
Moves are always a little bittersweet. Even though I’m quite ready to have more space, I’m still a little sad to leave behind a place that holds so many memories. We moved into this house when I was pregnant, so my son’s entire life has happened here. We’ve buried beloved pets here. The quiet…the trees…the frog-song in early spring…
When my well is dry, I often go to poetry – seeking to be filled. But, all my books are packed. And when I seek to understand, I write. today,
I don’t seek either. Instead, as yesterday, I seek only to retreat. To settle in and contemplate. To be productive and tidy up.
It is time to fully disassemble this nest, pulling apart each blended memory and packing them tight between dishes and books and knick-knacks.
It’s like taking apart a giant lego castle that took you twelve years to build…so large and sprawling it no longer fits in its space and cannot go back into its original boxes. There is always sadness in breaking down something that took so long to create.
But there is promise in the new uses those blocks could be put to.
Tomorrow, we will take the first boxes to our new house. We won’t be doing the heavy moving until Tuesday, so we won’t sleep there until then.
Blocks everywhere…ideas…thoughts. Where should we put the bed…how to arrange the couches…what color to paint the walls? We’ve been designing in our heads for weeks, and now, like children, we will begin the process of rebuilding our fort.
Maybe, like me, your retreat doesn’t involve posting every day. Maybe your retreat means reading, napping, sitting on the patio sipping something lovely. Maybe it means a hike…painting…taking your camera into the city. Retreats are about going inward, priming the canvas. They don’t always have to show their productivity. After all, the work behind a piece of art is buried within its colors and layers. The audience only sees the product, not the inspiration, dreams, plans, mistakes, revisions, and tantrums that go into creating it. I give you permission, if you need it, to sit tight with your retreat. To walk away from the keyboard.
If you are looking for a retreat prompt for this coming week, try this: