I've challenged myself to sit down and write EVERY DAY...it won't all end up here as I'm old school and using a journal for the daily writing, but I do think that I need to make myself publicly accountable even though no one is likely to read this. (This is a second draft of my second day's writing)
I’ve been daydreaming about treehouses lately—though treehouse might be inaccurate as I don’t want to hurt a free with anchors, impose myself on the tree’s space, or get in its way. Perhaps I could call it an elevated shack or a sky lodge or some other silly thing—I just want to be as tall as a tree and while away the time.
This morning as I walked the dog in the forest I envisioned a stilted house (or should that be a house on stilts?) all wood and windows with a tin roof and a tiny balcony, the better for being in the trees. My little house on legs would blend right in, the trees would accept us as one of their own. There would be a swing under it, on rough hemp rope and hopefully it will develop a squeak because all the best swings have squeaks in my memory.
Inside I will have soft rugs and a stuffed chair and my childhood wrought iron bed layered with quilts and pillows perfect for nesting. There would of course be a teapot and books. Many, many books. There would be an old-fashioned mailbox by the front door to put your phone in and a welcome mat on which to leave your shoes.
I would hang the walls with paintings of owls and birds and starry nights. There would be shelves for the books and the collections of things the forest gives me like feathers and special rocks, all my hagstones would hang in the windows with stars made of stained glass and wispy curtain made of dreams. There would be no chores or lists of things to do there…it would be a place to read, or write, or draw, or think. A quiet place away…just away. Away from chores, and phones, and screens, and lists.
It’s the lists that keep me down, that bind me to the burden. I cannot say that the list is always on actual paper because it is more of a continuous awareness that everywhere my eyes rest there is work to be done. One thing is no sooner done (or fixed) than something else insists it needs attention. This farm cries for attention, the house needs TLC, the dogs, the goats, the chickens, the garden; something is always demanded of me and somewhere along the way I forgot that I need attention, and TLC, and time, and space, too.
If I neglect the goats or the garden the consequences are dire—that’s how I think of it—something or someone will die. But I need to remember that the consequences of neglecting myself are dire too. I forget to eat. I forget how to sleep. I forget to dream. I forget to live.
So my little daydream shack in the sky is a form of self-care—maybe someday I’ll build it, but for now I go there in my mind.