I too lived—Brooklyn, of ample hills, was mine;
I too walk’d the streets of Manhattan Island, and bathed in the waters around it;
I too felt the curious abrupt questionings stir within me,
In the day, among crowds of people, sometimes they came upon me,
In my walks home late at night, or as I lay in my bed, they came upon me.
I’ve been thinking a lot about my word of the year. Even though I haven’t posted pictures that represent my reflections, trust has become an essential part of each day for me and the word continues to resonate strongly. You’ve probably noticed that I haven’t posted for the last few months. I don’t have any major “excuses,” except that things have been feeling big and I think in a lot of ways too vast to put down in words. We’re moving to Albuquerque in four days. Even as I write this, I’m overwhelmed and tears fill my eyes. It’s not about leaving NYC per se. NYC and I have certainly had a trying relationship at times, but we’re at peace with each other and ready to say goodbye after nearly two years.
I think the tears are about change and the unknown. Although I have a sense of Albuquerque from our weeklong visit, there’s still so much to be discovered and figured out about creating a home and community in a place where I don’t yet know a soul.
The other huge thing is that we’re going to have a baby in September! I could probably write volumes about this. I don’t know if I idealized pregnancy or if I just couldn’t fathom how incredibly wild it is, but it’s certainly not what I expected. What’s funny is until now, I’ve been surprised by my reaction to pregnancy. I guess when I think about it, I’m interacting with the experience in a classic Erin way – introspective, fearful, moments of true contentment, hysterical laughter, lots of tears, obsessive over my weight, and missing my friends and family dearly. As I write this, it occurs to me that this whole time, I’ve been exactly myself – just pregnant.
You can imagine the multitude of ways that trust is so meaningful right now. It’s a daily practice.
Song of the day: The Girl by City And Colour
I’ve been feeling incredibly blessed lately. As you know, we moved here for Bunk’s work. His job was actually a two year contract. You can imagine the excitement and the anxiety of modern day nomads not knowing where they would go after two years. Bunk conducted a national job search this fall and got a great job in Albuquerque, New Mexico. We’re moving there in June! I’m super excited for a million reasons. I think it’s going to be an amazing adventure filled with open sky, landscapes, enchiladas, new friends, deep breaths, art, and culture.
As I wrote about on my birthday, this move will be another series of lessons in embracing and letting go. While I am thrilled about our move, it’s still very sad to me that we are going to settle in a place where neither our friends nor family live. I’m actually pretty sure that no matter how much I love Albuquerque or how at peace I feel there, I’ll always feel loss about it. It will come out in the little moments and in the larger life events. It’s all just a part of it.
Our trip to Belize was remarkable. Every day was a mixture of cultural explorations and nature adventures. We had the opportunity to make tortillas with a local Mayan woman, Mrs. Bo, in her home, visit Eladio Pop and his family on their cacao farm, and go to two Mayan ruin sites. We jumped off of waterfalls, hiked, kayaked, snorkled and went spelunking. Our guides and others we met were incredibly open to all of types of questions. We talked about everything from the diabetes epidemic (Belizean’s call it “sweet blood”), to the issues around the surprise upcoming election, to a more recent trend towards Protestantism, and to the rituals of daily life.
On one of the hikes, I was talking with a fellow tourist about the concept of time. She said that she once learned that two of the ways that cultures look at time are linear and circular. In a linear society, there is always a feeling of pressure and loss. Time can never be recovered or revisited. Time thought about in a circular way leaves room to connect moments and feel the presence and meaning of the cycles of nature.
The feeling that I’m losing time has become such a huge part of my life even though I fight against it. I’m constantly playing with the concept of time, I’ve been trying to slow down and relax more in the midst of the energetic frenzy that is New York City. Sometimes, when I’ve had a particularly busy day and I’m heading home thinking about all of the things that I have to do, I’ll intentionally slow time down by stopping to talk to someone on the street or visiting a local shop. Time becomes connection as opposed to a task list. With this new framework I learned in Belize, I wonder how I can expand my understanding of time to include the circular as well. Let me know if you have any ideas!
We just got back from a spectacular trip to southern Belize. I’ll write more later, but here’s a little glimpse!
When I saw this project from Ann Wood, I couldn’t wait to try it! I love coming across recipes and projects that look intriguing. I have a major lineup. My next project is going to be resurfacing a table that Bunk and I found on the street. I’ll let you know how it goes.
Every February 1st, a song by one of my favorite folk singers comes into my head – February by Dar Williams. (You might remember it from my post last year.) I fell in love with it the first time I heard it. It’s a song filled with identity, forgiveness and beauty. Here’s my favorite part:
And February was so long that it lasted into March
And found us walking a path alone together
You stopped and pointed and you said, “That’s a crocus”
And I said, “What’s a crocus?”, And you said, “It’s a flower”
I tried to remember, but I said, “What’s a flower?”
You said, “I still love you”