I’ve been trying to write something here for days now. I approach the task with the best intentions but know that it’s really only my conscience goading me. No words come. I scrounge for a memory worth sharing, then wonder if it’s one I’ve already written about and catch myself wanting to waste time sorting through archived posts to make sure. It’s an old procrastination ruse, so I’m onto it most of the time.
Photos of recipes I’ve tried and liked are accumulating, waiting for something to be said about them, or the ingredients they were made with, whether they’re in season, local, organic….or not. Because you know, that matters, right?
I can’t muster up the energy because it all sounds so trivial.
I’m like an ostrich avoiding reality. I’d rather edit photos (which qualifies at least as legitimate procrastination), or sprawl on my bedroom floor in front of the big windows on this blustery day watching the storm come in off the Pacific — probably the last we’ll have until next winter. Mother Nature seems to have gotten March all wrong this year, with its entrance more like that of a lamb’s and its exit resembling a lion’s — at least in San Diego.
I could grab a book and lose myself for a while or think again for what seems to be the millionth time about whether the windows need drapes, and whether I should make them myself — except I’m not sure which closet that sewing machine is in and even if I did, my heart wouldn’t be into it.
A walk in the rain would also be nice, but the force of the wind is rattling the skylights and whistling down the chimneys. I’d make it out the door and realize how silly a decision it was since I’m nothing like the thin woman clad in white who just sprinted past my window, nor like anyone the Brontës might write about, a thin figure whose dark dress is flapping about her ankles on the hauntingly beautiful Yorkshire moors and proof of a pained existence etched across her brow.
So ridiculously unfocused and thinking none of it really matters.
I’ve been thinking about perspective quite a bit this past week. Counting my blessings. Thinking about life, loss, what I take for granted (see foolish exhibits A, B, C, and D above) and what others in the world right now have lost and may never, ever recover. I’m watching it on the news, in the photos that stream through a variety of websites, and can’t begin to understand. How can anyone not actually experiencing the magnitude of such devastation understand? I’m weighing the pettiness of any complaint, feeling short with others for their narrow mindedness, and all in all just very sad and angry.
So on this first day of spring and all it traditionally represents with respect to birth, new growth, and renewal, I hope the best for people in so many places on Earth right now devastated by things beyond their control.
If you’re someone who has thought about donating to a relief fund for Japan’s recovery, you may be interested in this piece by Stephanie Strom from the New York Times, “Charities Rush to Help Japan, With Little Direction.”
Donations can be made directly to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
More information about other ways to help are listed in “The Lede” at The New York Times: “Japan Earthquake and Tsunami: How to Help”