blurry edges

Matt Peck 5500 Flickr

I “found” this draft I wrote five months ago. It’s amazing to me how quickly the edges have blurred; I wrote a “guide to Berkeley” for a friend visiting next week and couldn’t remember some of the restaurant names I wanted to include. (This forgetfulness is either blurred edges or my memory is going. I sometimes wonder if that is a permanent state post-kid.) Anyhow, here it is, with some additions at the end.

The clock is ticking on my time in the SF Bay area; the movers arrive in three days. (Gulp. Shall I just say that there will be a few late nights in my future?) With that recognition I feel like my senses are in some ways becoming more acute, attempting to take in, to store all that I see, hear, and smell. I want to store it for a time when there’s a bit more space, to pull it out and ponder.

The kids and I drove to the Bay Area Discovery Museum today, which meant that we crossed the Richmond-San Rafael bridge. It was a glorious time, the sun shining, the blue water sparkling, the sailboats in the distance. As we were crossing I realized that the edges of my memories are getting those blurred edges, as if in a dream. I will soon forget the details of the trip, but will remember the Golden Gate bridge, poking into the fog. I won’t remember that I had to drag Nathan off the bathroom floor (ugh!) but rather that they painted next to each other in one of the art studios, that they dug in the sand and laughed and ran outside. And I might not even remember the pain of packing, but instead the true bittersweet times of going to Pixar for the last time today, and saying goodbye to friends I love this weekend.

This blurring happens whenever I leave a place. I smile at Nissan 300ZXs that I see, only because a crush of mine in college adored them. I remember Frith’s creativity and laughter, even amidst the pain of broken relationships. And the edges will soften on the memory of feeling really lonely after my daughter was born, because I will ponder what Kim and Nicole and Martha and Krista and…are doing.

Salient events in Berkeley are untouched. Walking around the corner to my friend’s house to catch up on (or vent about) the day while my kids play with hers and she cooks dinner–crystal clear. Bible studies with friends–sharp. The pang of dropping my child off in the church nursery and hearing her (and then him) cry–still ringing in my ear. Conversations as we prepared to leave (at goodbye parties, over brunch, at the Berkeley marina, and with people at a wedding the night before we left) and the poignant memories associated with them–easily conjured up again. What I note (again!) is that the memories I hold dearest are those with other people. I *did* love camping and having it snow on us and Yosemite’s majestic falls but the details of the height or the smell or the magnificence tend to be subdued over time. But the people hold dear. What a great reminder that I want to engage with people.

We were back in southern CA for Christmas and the stark change from sunny skies and social activities to clouds and some rain upon arrival threw me for the evening. I felt lonely and my heart sank. But then I saw my kids playing the next day, and they were so excited to be home. Home. The edges still feel a little sharp, but this is home.  I can’t wait to create more memories here.

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