Saturday, November 6, 2010

The New Room

Dear philosophers, I get sad when I think.
Is it the same with you? --Charles Simic

The office in our house is largely second-hand, cast-off or leftover. It's my favorite room in the house.

Our girls call it "The New Room," because it's been assembled and arranged more recently than the rest of the house.

Maybe our lives are the same--overlapping circles of being cast off or jettisoning parts and people and coming together with new-to-us stories and people who are their own cast-offs. But the way we come together, the intersection of it all makes it, us, new.

We watched Toy Story 3 last night. We'd seen it in the theater but the girls wanted to see it again. There's a montage in the beginning, home movies that show Andy and his toys growing from elementary school to college age. Aside: despite getting older, I often feel like the toys who stay the same over time, I rarely feel like I've grown up.

I'm a sucker for storylines or songs or photos that show kids growing older or father-daughter relationships. My heart swells to the point where I'm 2.4 seconds from sobbing over that shit.

Anna is eight and cares about brand names, while Ava at five is concerned only with colors and cuteness. Their vocabulary and expressions, body movements seem to change daily. It's awesome. It's gut-wrenching.

This passage of time stuff. Most of the time I am cool with it. I can embrace it. I love my life more at 38 than I did at 28 or 18, and I dug it then.

It makes my existence to watch and be a part of the girls growing and laughing and beaming happy. At the same time I follow the thread to us being kids and my parents going through this and my parents being kids and their parents going through this and I know/knew their parents and three out of four of them are dead now and... Fuck!!

I'm not often taken in that direction, but that's where thinking leads sometimes. Logical-emotional-existential thinking when you're sitting in "the New Room," looking at your bookshelf that once held your Betamax tapes of Star Wars and your old little league games.

Dear philosophers, I get sad when I think.
Is it the same with you?


Runners on Trails said...

You are sounding like me, Mike. i'm glad you wrote about your moment in the "new room" where you had privelege to reflect and feel the emotion constantly running through our lives. You seemed to experience it, watch it run through you, then let it keep going; and that's a great thing. there'd be something wrong with you if you didn't get choked up a little with the things that ran before your mind in the "new room". Good on ya, bloke.

stephen bardsley said...

MV, Great post! I said to Joshua last night, now that fall ball (baseball) is over, we dont get our US time. He and Jacob seem to grow by the day! Joshua said this week that is sucks getting older, Yeah no shit! He's 11,LOL. Good on ya, bloke. Bards

Johnny Scrappleseed said...

My son turns 18 months old this week and in the midst of the joy he brings to us daily -- the laughter like I've never known, the inside jokes I couldn't have fathomed sharing with an pre-language human -- I've already had moments of panic that it's going by too fast.

When I first envisioned becoming a father, although I knew I'd be "good with kids," I imagined I'd be eager to reach the phase where we could hold conversations.

Instead I find myself reluctant to see any of the current phases pass. (Well, except throwing food on the floor, etc.)