Every so often, I’ll find myself looking through old pictures.
Maybe, when I was chubbier or thinner. When my beard wasn’t as full and maybe when I had more hair on my head.
I mostly see people.
I feel again the come and go of relationships. The people I’ve let go, and others I’ve found again.
Maybe they let go of me.
And maybe they found me.
I’m not really sure.
As the year ends, I grow more introspective. I think a lot of us do. I struggle connecting the dots, and there is little that I know to be true. The doubts that grow inside my heart say, “Well, who’s to say they aren’t going to drop you after a few years?”
That is the fear in my stomach.
Who’s to say I won’t leave again and create another tiny life. Home. Job. Family.
I have loved growing older into myself. I love the places I’ve been able to live and the people who have pulled me into their own messy and wonderful worlds.
I can’t help but to see life as moments of knowing a person and place. In my head, that is how I organize my world. That is how I organize my years.
Like a hermit crab moving into another shell.
Or seeing the cicada skins attached to them pine trees, growing out of their spaces and moving. Always moving.
You outgrow your own skin in the proper season. And as it goes, sometimes people outgrow you, and you them. But you hold on to them like heirlooms. Because they are important. Everything…is important.
I imagine this life as a space man, getting nudged and sent off on another trajectory. Small bumps. New direction. Falling through space, moving with the smallest bits of energy.
I’m currently sitting on my couch, listening to the sounds of my oven popping and moaning as it bakes a cake for a friend. All they wanted was yellow cake with chocolate frosting. But dammit if I’m not going to try to make it look the best I can.
Because everything is important.
Look outside and you will see it all around. The leaves that have already given their life for the year and the way things quiet down. I like to call it a simmer.
That’s what this stuff feels like.
A few bubbles to the top every so often letting you know the heat is steady and low.
To me, all of this stuff is small movements. Never an energy wasted. Perhaps your skin is getting ready to shed again, or maybe yours is fresh. Maybe you’re in the middle. All according to their own season.
And all the more reason to notice and breathe and look upon those heirlooms with big love and feel deeply your place in our ceaselessly changing world.