This morning I perused old blog posts of mine looking for photos to submit to a nanny magazine. Oh Chicago. Dear, wonderful, rich, life-giving Chicago. I read my words and these feelings resurface. I was full up to the brim with my authentic self when I lived there. The beauty of the seasons, the freedom of the city where everyday was an exciting new adventure, and my little old time third floor walk-up apartment with the radiator and 13 windows in a 650 square foot room, the people I met, the employment I had, the surprises around every corner, the culture, the midwestern warmth, the diversity. My words are alive. I can feel my heart beating inside of them.
Zak and Ike at Cubs' game:
Isaac and Shannon's house:
Ukranian Village block party:
Lincoln Park farmer's market:
Sunset after storm from my living room:
And then I sit and think that I could always go back. I have that freedom. But life as I knew it there and then has disolved now, into a new reality. My family is all here now, all five of my children (and their children) are calling Sonoma home once again. As well, my babies I have loved there have scattered and grown: some moved to Seattle and others are ready to start school and don't need a nanny even if I did return. That's hard to swallow, but then I open my pocketbook of treasured experiences and sort through them and they just make me happy. A bittersweet pocketbook hanging from my forearm full of life's treasures. Cradled close to my body for security.
But alas, I am here, now. Be Here Now they say. And my life is beautiful and I am grateful. And I guess the bittersweet side of a joyful life is the letting go that happens day in and day out. Week in and week out. Year in and year out. I'm not good at that. But then I've told you this before.
When I was going through my divorce I found this pendant that is the Egyptian Rune symbol for letting go. It has resurfaced from my jewelery box every now and again throughout these past 20 years when I'm feeling the need for a little support because I'm clinging to something that really can't or shouldn't be held onto. It has been a comfortable talisman of growth for me.
Long story short, I need it right about now, cause Chicago....I long for you.
And then this minute, this very minute I look out my kitchen window behind my computer and see this lovely walking by and reminding me that this too, is a good place. This happy doe welcoming me home reminding that this moment is finding its place in my pocketbook, behind the embroidered hankie and Chicago memories.