Last Friday I sat outside in a chair in the shade on my back patio trying to turn the day’s blog post which was wrought with emotion into a poem. In doing so I ended up with a poem and about a dozen bites on my neck and left arm from some unseen spider or bug or four. Now I’m still itchy and resisting the urge to scratch. I ask myself, “was it worth it?”.
The answer is “yes” and of course now Ive learned a lesson too about writing outside. I just love being outside. I think as children we have instincts that take us there and, of course we have time to spare. There is so much lost in the transition to adulthood, it’s quite tragic.
I remember when I was a senior in high-school one of my favorite things to do was to just sit on my front porch. We had a tiny two bedroom house for the five of us and that house had a four foot by five foot cement slab outside the front door surrounded on two sides by a railing and was the first “step” to a series of other steps that led down a fairly steep slope to our one car driveway below. That top landing was just big enough for one folding chair and it was my perch for a whole year and a half before we moved again.
I used to sit there with my notebook, writing and thinking and thinking and writing, I watched the comings and going’s of people and animals. And sometimes I didn’t do anything except feel the warm sun on my face when it was high in the sky. When people say “those were the good ole’ days”, that’s what they are talking about.
It sort of sounds like a girl without a care in the world but nothing could have been further from the truth. And I’ve got evidence. Those notebooks recorded many parts of my adolescent years including the impossibly hopeless crush I had on my neighbor across the street and how my parents were incredibly insensitive about pretty much everything. It’s just the kind of fluff one might expect to find in the pages of a sixteen year old girl’s journal.
Then I grew up and unlearned how to sit still for an afternoon, watching life waft by. I think most adults feel that, possibly. That we no longer have the ability to just sit and observe.
Now I’ve just got to be moving. I’ve got to be active and not “waste” any minutes doing nothing. If I sit for even just s few minutes, I start thinking about things that need “doing”. Lists that need writing, closets needing to be cleaned and organized, dishes, laundry, blah-blah-woof-woof. That’s the real fluff!
What I really need to do is re-learn what’s been lost. Reprogram my neural network to slow down and just enjoy nature and the beauty in being still. What I would love to do is take my kids with me on the ride, and make sure they understand the importance and power in doing nothing.
The inventions of personal, hand-held computers has had such a negative impact on their lives. They have probably already missed many opportunities to enjoy their own imaginations because of phones and social media apps and video games. That’s tragic too.
It’s not lost on me that my daughter is now the exact age I was when I lived in that house. She spends most of the time in her room, with her laptop and phone. The things she’s writing have so much purpose and necessity behind them. She’s already busy doing all the things and not taking care to relax and let her mind be free.
Maybe this summer I can relearn and also teach. Now that, folks, would be time well spent.. not Nugacious at all!!!
Peace and Love,
Nugacious… came from a Latin word that meant worthlessness. It also appeared as nugation, nugament, and nugality. Something nugatious is of no importance. In philosophy, nugae were difficult but trivial matters over which a disproportionate amount of time was taken. Nugaemania was an overwhelming attraction to trifling things. A nugator was an empty-headed person; he was nugatorious.