23 October 2005

Susie & Justin 10/17/05


Susie & Justin 10/17/05
Originally uploaded by susiewrites.
Friday Night I decided to move my "home office" from a small room to a larger room. With two computers, a printer, about a thousand peripheral devices, cords that looked more like angel hair pasta than USB wires, two subwoofers and 8 speakers, two bulletin boards with twice the photos on them than they were ever meant to hold - highlights of my past ten years that just demanded to be captured - files, both virtual and hard copy, and books, books and, did I mention books? Well, this was no small undertaking. Not to mention it involved moving a Queen Size bed and a couple of bureaus and half of my daughter's wardrobe, to the smaller room, before moving "Command Central", to the larger room. I started at about 4:00 PM and called it a day at a little after 4:00 AM Saturday Morning.

All of the equipment, furniture (my desk comes in three pieces and literally looks like an Air Traffic Controller work station - and sometimes it feels like one), were moved and in place, but the floor was littered with things that hadn't quite found their home.

I cleared out my chair and surveyed the damage, and nursed what had to be my 10th cup of coffee. I should say SAVORED my tenth cup of coffee because this new office is impressively appointed with a Bunn Commercial coffeemaker with not one, not two, but THREE burners! Oh yeah baby, it's beyond cool, I mean, it's not the same as an "E Ticket" at Disney World, but it's not shabby either. With a coffeemaker of that magnitude, just add a couple of alcoholics and a resentment or two and we could have a kick-ass AA meeting in here!

Around 1:30 AM, I heard the familiar sound of the slamming of the side door and knew that either Katie or Justin had wandered home. It turns out it was my son.

I knew eventually he would find his way upstairs and it was worth staying up to see the look on his face when he went in the room formerly known as "the office" to surreptiously snag some online time. His eyes grew big as he walked into the room now known as "the office".

Rather than back away from the mess, my son pulled up a stool and we talked. I had found some old school photos of him and I was teasing him about his cute little self from years ago (he's still cute, but not nearly as innocent). We talked of the past, when he was small, places we had lived, visited, dreamed of and different adventures. He studied the photos and said how odd it was that he could remember exactly what he was thinking when a certain picture was snapped. I've never met a photo of my kids I could possibly throw away. These are the frames of our lives.

Justin told me what he had been up to and I loved listening to him - he could have been speaking Slavic, but I would have been as fascinated. He shocked me by telling me he had been to Barnes and Noble earlier in the day, and bought a copy of "Chaos - Making A New Science", by a guy named Gleick. My son was speaking to me of metaphysics! Come to think of it, Slavic may well have made more sense to me.

Obviously, he's searching. He's trying to figure out why we're all here, what our purpose is, how we came to be and possibly get a handle on where we may be going. It's exploration and I certainly realize you have to weed (sic) through a lot of stuff, read, touch, feel and you can do that for years - decades, and still come up confused, but you have to try. Justin is trying. I think I was more stunned to discover he was reading up on metaphysics than he was to find that my office had been relocated.

About 2:30 AM, we heard another slam of the side door and realized it had to be Katie. I told Justin to quickly go close the door to what was my old office and come back, shut the door and wait for her to be surprised.

We heard her trudge up the stairs and open the wrong door, realize her bed had been moved,and then she opened the door to where we were lying in wait to see her face. "What the @#$%?", she asked in wide-eyed wonderment.

Surprise!

She was for sure. Seeing that Justin had settled in, she dropped her things and joined us, plopping on the floor. We brought her up-to-speed on what we had been speaking of and she respected her brother's new topic of interest. She opined, as Katie always does, but patted him on the back for taking on such a complicated read.

After about ten minutes, Katie put her hands up in the universal sign of, "Shut up, I have something to say!", and observed, "Do you realize that this is the first time in months it has just been the three of us in the same room, chatting about nothing in particular, and no one is in trouble or the focus of a lecture?".

We took notice, and we laughed. I offered to become "The Mom", but they advised against it. We continued to talk, and laugh, and talk some more. Some of what was said felt like TMI (too much information), and I could have done without some of the details, but hey, I'll take what I can get when it comes to spending time with my almost all grown up kids, even if it's at 4:00 AM and we should all be in bed asleep. I was met with my own admonishment for getting in bed so late/early, but I'll take the static and snatch up the first chance I get to do it all again. Such moments are sweet and precious and I live for those rare opportunities. If they happen to come at 4:00 AM, what can I say other than my kids come by it genetically and inherited my screwed up bio-rhythms. Sleep wouldn't have been nearly as interesting and there's always time to grab some Z's, but there's not always the chance to see what's going on with Katie and Justin. We even shared a hug goodnight and I finally left Katie to check her online websites, and Justin headed downstairs to bed where he had only 3 hours to snooze because he was due to be at work by 8:00 AM.

Yesterday was spent putting things away and catching glimpses of the floor that was just beneath the rubble. Plants were placed under light-friendly windows, more old photos were perused and memories were tickled, and a lot of coffee was ingested. I'd woken up early Saturday Morning with a screech, so I was a little sleep-deprived myself, but even taking that into consideration, I still got a lot accomplished, though probably not as efficiently as I should have.

I'm back online, things are humming along, and it's been a beautiful day in the neighborhood, even if it is a late October afternoon in Autumn.

Mellow. The mood has been most decidedly mellow and understated. Understated can be a good thing. I don't mind a generous helping of understatement. I've spent most of my today putting more things up and discarding a few things I no longer need.

Today has afforded me the chance to linger over the tangible accroutrements that define and recall the personal spaces in my life, both literally and figuratively; The places I have lived, visited, items that serve to remind me that I've loved and enjoyed most all of this life of mine, chaos included. Even the stuff I could have done without taught me lessons I couldn't do without and maybe could have only learned by living and making the mistakes. As long as the lessons are learned, the mistakes become invaluable tools and suddenly sport a modicum of merit. There has been a lot of merit in my life, and I hope to merit lots more, and stay away from the recycle bin.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Susie:

When all is said and done and the end is near, you will cherish these stolen moments with the kids. At their age, these impromptu conversations will become fewer and farther between. Grab as many as you can before they are no longer avaiable.

Paul

Hale McKay said...

Haven't stopped by in a few weeks. Hope everything's well with you and yours.
..I see you must be very busy. Will check soon for next posting.