So the phrase once in a blue moon. I take it to mean almost never. Like, can you believe this is happening because it’s so damn rare, kind of occurrence. Turns out it happens every two years or so which completely ruins my analogy that last Friday a blue moon gracefully descended upon my sweet little life and smacked me right in the middle of my face.
On Friday, I met this beautiful person.
After becoming friends through the blog and swapping secrets and thoughts and questions and me-too’s over email for months and months, she arrived on Australian soil and at my doorstep and I got to hug her in real life and sit down and drink tea together like we’d dreamed about for so long. It was one of those once in a lifetime meetings full of so much connection you wonder if you were in fact, separated at birth. It was surreal. A little crazy even. Here we were, two people who had never met, linked by a story I threw out into the world and a story that was flung back, separated by 2000 kilometers and a great big ocean, sitting together in a lounge room saying I feel like I’ve known you my whole life.
I’ve decided we, as a society, need to come up with a new saying. Once in a supernova? They only happen every fifty years. Yep, Friday was a supernova, and I feel so grateful to have seen it with my very own eyes.
It took Ella all of five minutes to cling to Caitlin’s hip and refuse to be moved, clearly wanting to be as close to Caitlin’s magic as I did. She was transfixed, and between showing her all of her special toys and clambering onto her lap and staring at her for long minutes, all I could do was pick up my camera and capture the love that had somehow instantly ignited between them.
It was five hours that disappeared into what seemed like five minutes, and so many times I caught myself thinking how amazing women are – how inspiring and loving and strong and beautiful they are, and how, when we drop the armor and comparisons, we are each others greatest, truest allies. Joel would never have been able to match those five hours Caitlin and I spent together, not because I love him any less but because he isn’t a woman. Women share a different bond. A different love. A different sense of belonging.
There’s nothing like it.
After she left, I immediately started looking up flights to New Zealand and guess what? We’re flying over a big ocean and taking a little family trip in six weeks time. Because life is wild and precious and short, and good things – once in a supernova things – need to be celebrated.
What I have come to realize is this. Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and blogging and the million other social media outlets which exist are not bad any more than soft cheese or wine is bad. We can use these platforms to hide a little from real life and from real human connection. We can use them to pretend we have different lives than we actually do. We can use them to zone out, to numb our feelings, to look for comfort. This is where abuse begins, and we can tell it’s happening when we end up feeling worse about ourselves than we did when we started.
But we can use these platforms not to dull our spirits, but to enliven them. Cheese and wine on a Sunday afternoon is a certain kind of happy nothing else can quite match, much like the internet can provide connection and inspiration we would otherwise go without. When we use whatever is front of us to make our lives better, richer, and more full, it is never a bad thing.
My life is richer for blogging and living a life out loud because things like Friday happen. Real connections form. I meet people I belong to. And even when I don’t meet them, a day can be changed by comments left, emails sent and stories shared. And that is real.
For all the times I have wished for a sister, I finally realize that I already have them.
Thanks for being here with me Red Tenters, in this little village we’ve made and in the great, big, beautiful world.
Some highlights from the weekend..
Brace yourselves, you guys. On Saturday night I stayed up late late LATE and spent the night huddled around a cozy table eating, drinking and talking with some of my favourite people. We were there to celebrate a birthday – a dirty thirties themed party – and since dressing sexy is not high on a pregnant woman’s agenda, we went as dirty hippies instead.
Kind of just our normal clothes, really.
I took my camera to the party with great intentions to photograph the moments there but when I saw the creative display of dirtiness our friends dressed in, I decided I’d save you lovely people the sights. It’s only Monday after all. And I’d like to keep this place of ours semi G-rated. Ella might read it all one day. Which is why I’m also not showing you a photo of her dad.
Moving right along.
We headed to the markets the next day, swinging by my brother’s house on the way with a “get some pants on, you’re coming with us”. A good sport really, considering he’d only gotten home from the night before a few hours earlier. He’s never one to miss out on anything, my brother, and Ella was thrilled to have her Uncle close by.
More weekend moments were filled with family and food and walks on the beach and dance parties in the back of cars, balanced beautifully with the calm and simple art of home.
Second pots of tea were brewed. Showers weren’t had until midday, newly bought lavender soap ripped from the packet and wafting its smell through the bathroom like a blissful day spa. We watched daddy build stuff and we had picnics in the tepee and we fell into that beautiful feeling where the only plans we had were to be with one another.
This weekend, my mama gave Ella a Little Red Riding Hood cape she had made and it’s so cute I can’t stand it. It’s the little things, always. Always it’s the small things that make time pause for a moment so I can pinch myself and drink in how desperately I love this little girl in front of me.
It was a grand weekend and we start our week this Monday with a fresh, clean slate, excited for the week ahead and the small happies to be found within it.
Happy Clean Slate Day.