Spring!

I am aware that it appears as though I’ve been loading up my  u-haul for the last three weeks in preparation for my move to the East Coast, where I will be pitching a tent in the Guilford Green and taking showers in the Guilford Free Library, because I will have no home and no job there when I arrive.

But, in fact, that’s not what happened after my recent trip to the east coast.  I got home to Berkeley.  Spring’s arrival is unambiguous.  Poppies everywhere.  Jasmine blooming in huge bunches.   Meyer lemons bursting on our bush outside.  How could I live anywhere but where I live?  And so I became distracted from blogging and everything else, and for three weeks I’ve been picking bunches of blooming things and coloring easter eggs and cooking stuff.   Lovely.

While doing all that, I’ve been thinking about this particular time in my life.  Spring is universal and timeless.  It comes.  It goes.   Things burst into life and then they are dormant.  Against that backdrop though, my children are becoming teenagers — a season I won’t ever see again, but one I love watching from a distance.

What I’ve noticed is that this  bursting-into-life, their spring, is actually pretty wonderful.  Adolescence is a time of big, gusty emotion, which can be a pain to deal with and can really unbalance a woman who isn’t used to that kind of drama (except when she’s doing it).  It’s also, though, a hugely fun time.  My kids are mischievous — they tease each other and me, and although I know that doesn’t sound like a big thing, I love it that they feel enough freedom to give me a hard time about listening to Lady GaGa.   I also love it that Lady GaGa, with her many weird outfits exists this spring.  And my kids are excited about being freer, about going to a big urban high school in the fall, about finding their own way — on the bus and at that school and then into the bigger world.

This weekend, Jack’s performing in Rigoletto — he has three lines on that huge stage, but he belts them out beautifully.  And Charlie?  He’s jumping off things on his skateboard that are very big — and spinning around when he does it and then landing and looking like it was all no big deal.  (While he wears the helmet I force him to wear).  It’s scary and exciting and fun to watch them.  I love being the mother of these kids, love the way they’re stepping onto the stage and launching themselves into life.

Happy Spring!

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13 thoughts on “Spring!

  1. Oh Lily, you said I made spring sound beautiful. I beg to differ. You make it sound best. Good luck to the teens and enjoy the poppies for me. I have doubts that my California poppies (which i lovelovelove so much) will ever thrive in New York. Happy Spring indeed!

  2. How lovely this sounds! It has been a long time indeed since I’ve experienced the exuberance of youth in my life!
    You are wise to enjoy this while you may, for it flies by unbelievably fast.

    Thank you for your lovely comment on my blog today, and for reminding me of Ann Tyler, who has always been a favorite of mine. I’m quite sure I have several of her novels somewhere in my stacks ~ time to look them up.

  3. You’re back! I’m so glad that you were only enjoying life and your family rather than actually moving to Guilford! We are enjoying spring here in the Ozarks. It has been raining all day, which is a drag because I can’t really get out and work in the garden but it is wonderful because we definitely need the moisture.

  4. I love that Jack’s in “Rigoletto”. I’m sad you won’t be moving east — we have a room — we’d even clean it for you! Alas, it’s clear your heart belongs to Berkley (and your exuberant family!).

  5. I think teenagers get such a bad rep, but when it’s actually such an exciting time, and I love teenagers. How nice to read about a mother who’s enjoying it, since so many complain about it.

  6. Lately I’ve been jonesing for a move back east. Don’t know what’s hit me; maybe it’s this record heat we’re having here in southern Cali. I’m not ready for it. But I’m happy to hear that you’re ringing in spring with radiance. I’ve been surrounded by a lot of negative crappy crap lately, so to hear that someone is bouncing around with a smile on her face for all the right reasons…well, that’s pretty darn nice.

  7. How right you are, dear Lily, to see an analogy between the flourishing of spring and our children’s exuberant adolescence. Both give such hope. The other day my dad was talking about his three grandchildren (all teenagers now) and saying ‘I just can’t wait to see what they will do’. I knew just how he felt – it’s like the best kind of present unwrapping.

  8. Once we become teenagers we pass the “Trainee People” state and emerge, like butterflies, into life. Many will go on to become adults. Some lucky few will remain teenagers even when they are wrinkled and doddery (like myself). You have obviously remained a teen and avoided staid motherhood. I wish the same for your wonderful sons. (thank you for your wish on my blog today)

  9. Archie — I’m with you, except I think the time has passed for me to try skateboarding!

    Litlove, You’re right about how interesting it is to see children become the adults they’re meant to be. I love watching it, but have trouble keeping my anxiety about all of it from becoming apparent!

    OP — Can you believe the way summer has just come in and muscled out our lovely, delicate spring? It’s SO HOT!

    Mari — You keep making those cookies, and lovely bags, and all that other stuff will just wilt away. (My hope, anyway…. but there is a lot of it around, isn’t there? It’s such an uncertain time. A lot like adolescence, in fact.)

    Dear Emily, It is an exciting time, isn’t it? I think it’s important to remember that in addition to all the gusts of BIG FEELING, there’s a lot of stuff that’s just really fun happening.

    Oh Marie — I’ll be visiting, now that you’ve mentioned the room! No need to clean it, by the way. xoxoxo

    Ms. HMH, I’m so grateful to you for showing what spring in the Ozarks looks like. That is one of the things about blogging that I continue to think is a complete miracle.

    Becca, You are so right about the sudden acceleration of time. I’m trying to slow it down by spending less time in front of a screen, and more time hanging out with my boys and my husband. That’s why it takes me forever to post sometimes and to answer comments!

    Ann, There are huge bunches of poppies up in the hills right now and when I walk, I will think about you and your beautiful weekend house and the way you make New York City look so lovely. Your grass looks so green whenever I come to your blog!

  10. Oh, BlogLily, I just read about your move! Berkeley’s loss! I wish you so well in your move. At least I can still follow you on your blog wherever you are!

  11. Phew! I thought you moved to east coast for good. I have never been to New England, not even DC. But I have found what I like here in the bay area. I would stay here for good too. I’m enjoying spring here in the city as well, just gorgeous!

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