Saturday, March 25, 2006

More Clarification and Explanation of the Fruitfulness of this Exercise

It's interesting how resistant people are to this exercise... "My life cannot be summed up in one moment." and etc. I didn't explain... this is more the admission that your life is a series of moments, and they can be seen as emblematic of a larger theme, when you look back at them. It's the nature of memory that the same thing can mean something different at different times. It's sort of fascinating, if you're a navelgazer, to discover that some event you remember is quite revised when you revisit it after five years, or ten, or twenty, when everything is different and your life has changed. When I was in college and looked back at violin lessons as a child, I felt a sort of claustrophobia and guilt and shame toward my mother, who had big expectations that I would "be better than anyone else, at least at one thing," and she had decided that one thing was playing the violin.

Now when I look back at the memory of violin lessons I think about the gift my mother gave me of her time and energy, and also feel myself infused with shame over not doing the same sort of thing for my kids. And then out of that shame spiral I find myself saying no, I don't need to be All Things to my children. I am enough. I have to live my life, and they are cared for as well as I can do it.

So anyway. That's what I meant, sort of a view of parts of your life with perspective and interpretation.


Blogger ...e... said...

sometimes some of us have never really gotten beyond those parts.

3:32 PM  

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