Turn the quiet up, turn the noise down.
~Sung by Eric Church
I have always loved solitude and find comfort in quiet. Yesterday, a fellow barista told me she was an introvert and I laughed and corrected her. She is very outgoing and talkative, and I associate an introvert instead with a shy person who thinks more than they speak. She told me that although, yes, she is outgoing, to her, an introvert means someone who craves solitude to reset and recharge. She is not charged up by being around people, but rather by being alone. Solitude gives her energy and restores her. Being around people, on the contrary, drains her. I agreed that by this definition, I too am an introvert.
I am reading Jewel’s autobiography (have I mentioned how much I love Jewel? Oh yeah, I have; Here. I have more than just a little girl crush on her. I think her and I are spirit animals). She has an ongoing theme which is finding calm amongst chaos, finding peace in turbulence. She is introspective, thoughtful, an artist. Although she is constantly getting rid of her possessions, the one thing she always keeps is her writings. She journals and writes songs and makes sense of her feelings by writing about them honestly. Although she has a tough life, rather than acting out as a result of it, she chooses to find her way through it the best way she can.
I set my bags down in the guest room and stood in the living room, looking out at the frozen lake covered in a thick blanket of snow. There is something so peaceful and quiet about land covered in snow. It muffles all sound in quietness so unlike the hum of summer. No birds in the trees, no rippling of live water. The isolation reminded me of Alaska, and I decided to take advantage of the opportunity to go into silence myself. Winter is a time for going inward. For tending to the unseen.
~Excerpt from Jewel’s Never Broken
Although it is the first day of November, it was seventy degrees today, so I made arrangements yesterday with work and childcare so I could make it to this outdoor yoga class at Lake Zorinsky. I think perhaps the reason I gravitated towards yoga was because it is a chance to quiet yourself and find peace. And although in a class there are other people, I barely notice them. “Yoga is about your own journey,” you often hear in the practice and indeed it is; each of us doing slight variations to the same pose, breathing differently – being aware of each other, but in no way comparing or defining ourselves by each other. It was relaxing and challenging, motivating and calming all at the same time.
I am always looking for calm amongst chaos, but I have learned with two small boys it is nearly always chaos. In my craving for solitude, motherhood is hard. Even eating dinner together is constant noise – shrieking and running from the table, throwing food, spitting it out. So I look for little moments to isolate myself partially – writing at my desk across the hall from the toy room or reading on the porch while they play on the playground. It isn’t complete peace, but it is what I can get for now. I must find time to go inward and tend to the unseen, despite the seen and very much heard.