Sunday, February 8, 2009

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

In 1985 I fell in love...

... with this book. When I passed it on my bookshelf recently I pulled it down to re-read. I wished I hadn't.
What I had once been enthralled with had lost its allure. I found it tedious, tenuous and boring. I re-read the book to the end hoping to find a spark, any spark of the potency that it had held for me all that time ago. I was disappointed.

So then I got to thinking about how this could be. How something I was once besotted by could now be so empty and meaningless. I am glad I persevered with the read because I have learned that the way I felt as a woman with three young children plus a life of domestic responsibilities is so different to the way I feel now.

Then I was heavy, weighed down and I wanted to feel escape the repetitiveness and drudgery of my days.

Now I have grown roots into the earth and feel grounded, connected - heavy - but like the gum tree across my river I am floating in the summer sky, moving with the breeze, feeling the sun and the rain - I am light, and I can draw up from the great roots...

Words from Robert Bly


  1. I feel like I am drifting with no solid ground underneath my feet..
    getting to know my new old me takes I float along and use my life skills to get through...I like life but also don't like it at times..I have realized that it is not all smell of roses.

  2. Mona: How right you are - sometimes it stinks! But you can learn to look out for the roses and not step in the sh**. Then again sometimes you just don't see it coming. But sh** and roses are equally a part of life.

  3. One thing that puzzled me when I was in my thirties was this: how could people in their sixties, seventies, and eighties be so happy? I mean, come on. "Don't they know they're about to die?" I thought to myself.

    I thought that in my autumn years I'd have the wit be depressed by my immanent demise. How wrong I was. At 57, I feel happier than ever. This reminds me of a book by Forrest Church called Love and Death that I read recently. Maybe I'll do a post. Thanks, Delwyn.

  4. Dan: Exactly, Its the 'living' of it that becomes essential, squeezing all the juice out of each day...And maybe contentment has something to do with maturity - like you I am the happiest I have ever been...

  5. Delwyn - I am glad that you are happy...that makes me happy :) and I do believe I grow happier as I grow older, and that is comforting. and now you have me curious... what would I think of "the unbearable lightness" now??

  6. Hi Val: maybe you will have to read it again good to have you as a travelling companion


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