I say, “I’m gonna write this weekend.”
“Great!” he says. “While you do that, I’ll do my taxes.”
It sounds odd. And funny. Is this balanced? Does it seem fair? But, in reality. Balance is leaving enough room for the other person that they feel at ease to do that thing that most serves them. And also, that they don’t require your attention or presence. We lay in the morning, as the sun arrived, and talked about the day, about yesterday, about the week’s accumulation. And then we got up and went to the farmer’s market. He was amazed and excited to find a raw milk at the market (not for human consumption, HA!). He remembered being young, in agriculture college, working on a large dairy farm. He’d come into the milking barn “drenched with sweat, without a single inch of dry clothes to be found on me.” He’d fill a GALLON of ice cold, fresh milked that morning, from the tanks and drank the entire thing, the icy rivulets streaming down over his chin and whiskers and shirt-front. We came home eager for our breakfast of local cheeses, artisan brad, my homemade orange marmalade and coffee. The fresh milk was cold and satisfying in a way the skimmed milk can never be. I loved the story and loved seeing him content even more.
Then I rode the tractor (my not-so-Lil’ John Deere) and fertilized the trees and shrubs and bushes. The pecan trees have budded out, the pear trees held onto their blossoms and have set fruit. We escaped the very late-in-the-season, two nights of frost. I look forward to the fruits to come. We might even get peaches and figs.
And now I write.
I have this piece of music that I am conditioned to, it sets me in the space to write. It hushes the other voices in my head: list maker, chore foreman, grocery shopper, house keeper, general worry wart. And then the creative parts step up, too long relegated to the back row, the dark corner, the broom closet. I have too long said, “I don’t have the time to be creative.” And so, that part of me stopped demanding, stopped asking, stopped showing up for roll call.
But I notice. Where is Miss Creative? Did she give up on me? Is she gone? I go looking for her; I miss her. Why did she stop pushing into my head space, brimming with her ideas and her energy? Why bother when so many other parts call louder, shove harder, demand attention, taking hostages. Miss Creative doesn’t demand. She doesn’t capitulate. She doesn’t extort. No point. She waits. Only in the ease can Miss Creative be good company. She makes her own demands in her own sort of way. She won’t be squeezed in between running errands and tending beehives. She knows that there are priorities. And, thankfully, she waits.
And I write.