Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Rounding the Corners

There's a metaphor here. It may be a little painful getting there, but I'm going to give it a shot.

I had coffee with my friend Elizabeth the other day. For four hours, the poor dear listened to me blather on about my sad life. (Note to self... pull it together or drink less coffee. Those are your only two choices.) Anyway, in addition to the monster/classic scary movie stuff that you see when you follow her link, Elizabeth and her husband are arborists and amazing gardeners.

Around here Dave has always done the gardens and, really, they are lovely. But Elizabeth pointed out that they are aggressively rectilinear. There is no curve or soft edge anywhere in the rather large yard. Sometime in the spring, she and her husband are going to come out here, and we're going to take a shovel to the gardens and round the corners. That promises to be a fun and exhausting weekend.

And it got me thinking. Perhaps that's exactly the task -or part of it, anyway- that is before me. I need to/want to "round the corner" in the sense of softening some of the edges that have developed over the years. In the house (which is a classic four-square -again, quite angular), in relationships with people, in my own thinking about the world... maybe I need to stop thinking in boxes and straight lines and start thinking in spirals and swirls. I need to soften.

Of course, the temptation under the circumstances is to harden and be tough and stand my ground. And maybe I'll need some of that as separation and divorce proceed. OK, certainly I will. Boundaries need to exist, but in some ways they are over-rated as defense strategies. For now, I'm going to see where softening the edges takes me.

Of course when I try to get down to specifics I get a bit muddled. We can add curves and height to the garden. I can soften many of the hard edges in the house, over time. Textile-girl that I am, I can probably figure that out. I can call friends who have been boxed out, because Dave isn't crazy about entertaining. I can -oh dare I say it- try to get out of my own head and my own troubles- and see if I can soften someone else's troubles.

More ideas?


Lisa :-] said...

the part about getting outside your own head is a good thing. I've been working on that for years...

Elizabeth said...

curves in the garden are a good thing. you know that people who offer to help you out with a shovel are true friends. I have tons of gardening books, if you ever have the urge to look at any.

Mollie F. said...

Maybe you should have purchased a round bed ;).

Lexy said...

If I'm still here in the spring, which seems like a given, I'll give you some flowers and plant them! I love gardening!

I'm not seeing you as someone with hard edges. I have always seen softness and flow. So I'm thinking what you do/say for others is not what you say to yourself. Treat yourself with the same kindess you give to others.

I'm trying to learn that lesson myself. Doesn't really work for me when I'm talking to me as me, ya know? So I have that divine feminine person, the one who I want to be, who watches over me, who softens me, talk to me. It's funny that her strength of 100 giants comes from her softness.

Talk to yours. :)

Renee said...

"maybe I need to stop thinking in boxes and straight lines and start thinking in spirals and swirls. I need to soften."

This is total Anusara language. I think the course of action here is obvious... (uh, in case it's not, find thee an Anusara teacher!)

Andrea Rusin said...

I didn't even think of that. That's brilliant.

Kimberly said...

I really like the "rounding the corner" idea. It made me think of something else...

I picked up an Okinawan martial art in college (Isshinryu Karate). Very straight lines in most of the movements. Very efficient, very fast. But Aikido is focused on arcs and sweeps. It's far more graceful and beautiful than Karate. It's also all about redirection of energy. Your post made me think of that.