A Visit & Morning Pages

My friend is here. I picked him up at the airport yesterday. We stayed up last night talking until almost two which made getting up at six a challenge but well worth it to spend time with a friend I haven't seen in a year and a half. The lack of sleep is nothing. I want to soak up every moment.

Last night, just the two of us in the living room, he said, "I love your house. It's so cozy." He's not the first to say so and each time I take it two ways. One, we make a comfortable home. Two, it's a simple kind of place. I don't mean that we have a shabby house, but no one will mistake it for fancy. It has no pretensions and feels simply like home. That's how it felt to my friend and how it feels to me.

Some of this is the effect of the furniture and decorations, but it's more that my daughters chose to sit out in the living room with their mother and me and my old college roommate. They talked and listened, joked and told stories. The comfort of this home comes from the four of us and it's palpable. Even after my wife and the girls had gone up to bed, there was the feeling of comfort and ease that comes only with a long-term friendship and a place in which two old friends can sink back into things as though no time at all has passed. No wonder we stayed up almost to two.

Four hours of sleep and off my schedule I got up, emptied the dishwasher, got laundry out of the dryer for my older daughter to have the right clothes for school, opened the blinds, turned off the furnace, and sat down to write three Morning Pages. There's a comfort there as well, though I wanted to go back to sleep or make a cup of coffee. The comfort is in doing what I do, what I have done. I sat down, uncapped the pen, and figured myself out with blue ink over three pages. I think about the blog post for the day, an idea I mapped out a couple days ago, and a note I want to write to a friend.

Less than half a page in, I'm in the groove. I have momentum and energy like rolling downhill into the sunrise.

The writing sets the table for the meal of my morning, afternoon, and evening. It creates a mood, a way of being. The results of this aren't anything I can measure or set down in exact figures try as I might. It is instead a feeling, one about which I'm as sure as of anything. The pages open me for the day, put me in a space and mode. From there the day flows.

There are things about Morning Pages which go beyond the boundaries of the written word, the ineffable effects that, like friendship, comfort, warmth, and love, must be felt perhaps without any logical understanding. Why do I do Morning Pages? Why should you? I can only begin to tell you. The rest you need to feel.

My friend said, "we have to find ways to see each other more than once a year." Why do we need to see each other? Who bother when we live so far apart? To push this defies logic. Of course it does. There is no logic in friendship, in love, in the simple need to fill three pages by hand this morning after staying up until two with my friend and then waking at six with the family. It all defies logic and works at some other level.

I'm willing to call that level what it is: magic.

An Amazing Gift

"...the universe has sent me some amazing gifts just when I thought it had forgotten me."
— Carol Mikoda

I have good friends who write well.

The message above came to me this morning and has stuck with me all through a tough day. I've been feeling very much at the end of my rope for the last few months. There are times when I appreciate the goodness around and within me. Then there is all that dark time when I spiral. I've been so tired all day and while those sixteen words haven't been quite enough to fill me with energy, renew all my hopes, and get me over all my troubles, they have certainly buoyed me and allowed me to float a little better than otherwise.

What amazing gifts has the universe sent to you?