Tuesday, May 24, 2011

depth perception

Today is my birthday. As I have gotten older I have come to believe that milestones are important and deserve pause. Not that I always do this, but trying live a more mindful life starts with trying to be more mindful of myself, no?

At today's milestone I am grateful that the school year is almost over. In retrospect, my own high school years were all about navigating imminent disaster and hopefully drawing the luckiest cards. It was about only seeing myself through the eyes of others on some days, and on other days being far too sure of what I wanted or didn't. Years have mellowed this certainty for me a bit, but my children are in the midst of those years now. I am grateful that we have come through another year still liking each other a lot. I am grateful for my oldest son's wisdom and warmth and heartbreaking beauty. I am grateful for my younger son's head splitting brilliance and impossible nature, and huge psychedelic smile.

I was recently published with my first byline as a translator. The book is a study in spatial physics by a professor at the Sapienza University in Rome. The word sapienza literally means knowledge, and I am grateful for the knowledge that I have a love of physics. With my younger son's Stephen Hawking books scattered around the house, I realized that even though I have always worked and studied as an artist, there is a physicist hidden away in my innermost brain dying to get out. There is something extremely comforting and humbling in the study of how the world is made, how and why we see it the way we do, something I have never found in any religion. I studied perspective and depth perception and color theory extensively when I was in college. I remember feeling like I was seeing the world through such enlightened eyes, like I knew a secret no one else around me did. Now I have that feeling again. Art and science truly are the same. I hope to continue my studies into physics. It is the ultimate trip.

I am grateful for the eighteen years of marriage I have passed with my husband. I am grateful that our vision of the future continues to evolve and transform in the same direction with the same ideas, generally off the wall and far fetched, which we always seem to make happen anyway. I am grateful that somehow against all odds by pure happenstance I found someone who loves me totally and selflessly and unconditionally. I have no idea how I got so lucky.

Depth perception is not a given. It is an art. Depth can be seen everywhere if you know where to look, in the smallest most mundane of things. It is elusive when I am living on the surface, running and running to get through the day. Depth can only be seen if I stop and seek it, so on this milestone I am grateful for a moment to see it, right here in front of me. On my birthday.

Thanks for reading.


Jill in Seattle said...

Wonderful post! thank you for sharing.

Happy Birthday!

Betsy said...

"I am grateful that we have come through another year still liking each other a lot."

With two boys on the cusp of their teenage years I'm grateful to read this and see that this is possible! :-)

Happy belated birthday!

Jennifer said...

Happy birthday

Jennifer said...

Happy birthday.