Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Beautiful Life

wabi sabi
Roger W. Hicks

A few years ago I came across the phrase Wabi Sabi.  It resonated with me.  Looking up the definition of it in preparation for this post I noticed that it’s meaning that I originally came across has been lost to me.  I was happy to come across this page on the net.
Sabi by itself means "the bloom of time." It connotes natural progression -- tarnish, hoariness, rust -- the extinguished gloss of that which once sparkled. It is the understanding that beauty is fleeting. The word's meaning has changed over time, from its ancient definition "to be desolate" to the more neutral "to grow old." By the thirteenth century, sabi's meaning had evolved into taking pleasure in things that were old and faded.
I’ve always appreciated the patina of old things.  I’m sure that has come about from growing up around my mom who collected antique furniture.  When she couldn’t find or afford something that was to her taste she would find a reproduction of it instead.  Her style is a white washed Louis XIV kind of thing.  I’m still not sure what my own is-a cross between wandering gypsy meets steampunk who aspires to sleek modern.
The Magnolia Pearl

Whatever my style is I’m learning to get over not having perfection in my life.  Perhaps I’ve gone too far over the other side in my relaxed relationship with housekeeping.  I do put my time in, but I’m not driven to have everything done in order to enjoy other activities.
It’s impossible to do all the things we ‘should’.  It’s taken me a long time to find some middle ground between being a Martha and a Mary.  There are many things that I want to be better at and housekeeping isn’t one of them.  I have the basics down and now I want to move on from dreaming about honing other skills to actually doing them so I can be more proficient at them.  It’s the same drive I had when my children were younger and it was important for me to keep them on a schedule and our home functional.
There is a part of me that feels guilty about this.  I have to remind myself that right now I do have the time and opportunity to pursue these dreams of mine.  As much as I would like to revisit those times when my children were younger, I know in my heart that I have reached that point in my life where change is inevitable and that I need to change along with it.  So when I look in the mirror and study my wrinkles magnified at 50 times normal, and see the wear and tear that my teenagers put our  home through I tell myself “Wabi Sabi”.  It is the beautiful life.

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