Isn't the world beautiful?
Isn't it incredible how the sunsets God paints across the horizon can make you feel so insignificant? Yet at the same time.... so significant.... because the God who is the mastermind behind them also created you and I, and loves us the most?
Isn't creativity fun and wonderful?
Isn't exploring new things enticing and thrilling?
I have been inspired lately. Not being in school has allowed the creative side of me to re-open and flourish - more so than ever before. I have written songs, made paintings, taken on crafty projects, and sought out new music. I am totally enthralled by the simple creativity that life allows.
On Thursday, Matt and I will venture to Natchez Mississippi to visit my dad (with a quick trip to New Orleans somewhere in there.... jazz musicians anyone?!?!?! I am so excited.)
Natchez Mississippi is like a different country. Visiting the South gives me culture shock without fail. Every time I have gone, I have ended up writing and writing and writing in this weird poetic-story-telling style that comes from who-knows-where because all my insides and emotions are so thrown off by the culture that is so strange to me. I want to share a sample of that poetic-story-like-piece with you today before I go.
From June, 2011:
Every time I get in that pool and have the stillness of the earth all around me, the birds singing endless love songs to one another (because what other kinds of songs would they sing?) and people coming and going from the lawn chairs, it makes me want to come right on inside and write about it all. Write about the stillness and the serenity paired with my aching and itching to get back to my true love in Salem, longing to hold him again and fall asleep touching toes and fingers. The irony of it all is overwhelming.
Matt mentioned something to me as we chatted on the phone. "Why don't you just enjoy yourself, Nat?" I have to ask myself the very same question. Quickly my instincts and defensiveness respond for me,"Because I have anxiety! Last summer was terrible! I want to be home!" But maybe there's something more. Maybe I am afraid to enjoy myself here. Maybe I don't really love these people enough to give them my joy and my time. I hate the thought of that. I hate myself for wanting to leave so badly. Why can't I just be a normal, laid-back person? Why can't I be the type of person Natchez was created for the enjoyment of? I don't know. I fail myself in these ways, and pray to God that he soften my heart and ease my spirits.
Today I miss God. I miss our morning discoveries and the pounding of my heart as I read His promises and am filled with life. I miss thinking about Jesus more than the characters of Jack Kerouac's books, wondering if I could write that way.
From May 2010:
Natchez is a slice of heaven, really. A little place filled to the brim with peace and humidity. Before I continue, I think I must briefly name the things I wish to write about, lest I forget them.
Rosie the nursing cat. Jumbalaya. Sobriety. Anxiety. The serenity of the air mattress room. Relaxation via pool cleaning. World disconnect. Acupuncture. Familiarty amidst a new house. Scooters. The suction cup of a place that it is - Natchez Coffee Company and my application (or lack of application). Reading. Jack Kerouac. Garlic, onions, and olive oil. Construction. Folding chairs. Magnolia trees. Spanish moss. Simplicity.
[I go on to discuss my father's life, and end with a small paragraph about my brother:]
Regardless of my brother and my completely different path choices, we got along. I was a bible thumper, and he occasionally did drugs. It worked.
These are the people in my life whom I cherish the most, and who have left a lasting impact. These are the ones I have gained insights from. These are the ones who have pushed me to expand my mind and to LEARN and to lIVE. These are the ones I love.
Something I must always be reminding myself of is to not mention my mother around my father. My mother is an angel, truly a gift. She is insightful, intelligent, humble, beautiful, loving. Always. These things aggravate my father - or at least that is my suspicion. But who wouldn't be aggravated by these wonderful characteristics in a woman if one had lost said woman? It makes perfect sense, although I do not think there is anything anybody can do about it.
There are deep wounds in me from things of the past, but regardless of those wounds, my job is to LOVE, and to love unconditionally. Despite the condition of my parents' relationship, despite the condition of my relationship with my dad, despite the condition(s) of Natchez (literally), my job is to love. Unconditionally.
I wonder what Natchez will inspire me to write this year.
And I can't WAIT to see my brother who I am so stinkin' proud of. I love you, Michael.
|[uncle bob, Dad]|
|[our main area of dining.]|
|[the antebellum mansion that has been left to rot and ruin.]|
|[My dad has scooters.]|
|[my sister, a mio, and the mansion.]|