Beaches, Card Games, and Being Restored

Restoration – This is quickly becoming my new favourite word. After this week especially, I can feel it in the back of my mind, like a small, little blip that I can’t seem to shake,
I like this word because there are so many different areas in life where it can be used. When I think of the word restoration, I think of surrender and of comfort. It’s a long, slow breath being drawn out in content (think of the smoke that blows out of your mouth on a winter’s day, or a bright blue beach – that’s what I see the word restoration looking like). It looks different for everybody in terms of how we approach it.
It looks like giving up, in the best way possible. Of releasing everything within us that begs us to be more and do more and try harder, and for one minute breathing and out, of letting ourselves go back to the place where we understand what was most important, and we clung to it with a tight fist.
I get distracted all the time. Little things, big things, they distract me from what I know I should be heading for and what I should be keeping close. Small things bring me back to the person I know I want to be.
The other night was spent around the table playing card games with friends. We ate chips and we laughed, we teased each other and we laughed together. There was warmth and kindness and jokes, and it was a moment of rest – of being restored, of being reminded of where I want to be, but more importantly who I want to be. I want to be in those moments all the time, moments of laughter and silliness and playing card games. Card games are the best sort of games – they can be played anywhere, with anyone – on airport floors, in the waiting room, (at the beach) and always always always late at night at the kitchen table.
What brings you back to restoration? Let yourself start the process of renewal. Head to your beach – watch the waves.
Card games are a good place to start.

A Thought on Carnivals and First Blog Posts (Am I Even Doing This Right?)

Let me set the scene for you. A warm, summer night. Squeaky carnival rides ring their bells as they start and stop, flashing brightly coloured lights as they’re set in motion. Greens, blues, yellows, purples, reds blur together in a kaleidoscope of artificial entertainment. The smell of buttery popcorn mixes with the sweet pink cotton candy, and all around are loud voices, people shoving. People greet their friends with half-hearted hellos, tired from walking, tired from buying, tired from being pushed into line time and time again. Look a little closer – those carnival lights have lost their sheen (as a matter of fact, a few of the lightbulbs have even blown out). The teenager making the sweet pink cotton candy looks exasperated. The whole carnival is a poorly constructed, falling to pieces, weak attempt to distract you from the fact that your feet are killing you and if you see another pastel Ferris wheel or corndog, you just may scream. But hang on – the sky is falling dark. And the magic starts to begin. The story looks the same for everybody. Arms are tugged, whispers are shared. Everybody turns to their people. “We should start heading home.” “It’s getting late.” “We could probably heat up those leftovers, right?” Slowly but surely, people leave in tight-knit groups filled only with their closest. But the magic doesn’t end here. It follows people to their houses, where they crawl up the steps and into their front doors. It’s where warm, yellow light greets them. It’s when somebody puts the pot on to boil, and somebody else starts chopping vegetables, and someone else lays the table. It’s the movie that’s put on as people settle into their night, as they laugh with those who are closest, leaving behind all thoughts of the strangers they ran into today. It’s the warm blankets and the soft cushions that are sunk into to, and the slam of the cutlery drawer.

The carnival is closed. The swing set squeaks quietly, blowing in the breeze. The lights are shut off. Everything is covered in grey. The entertainment source that was only a distraction for the night paves way for something greater – the home that people go to when they are sick and tired of running.

So that’s what I want this space to be for – I want it to be reminder that within all of our plans and fun and adventures, there’s something much deeper that we all long for, and we shouldn’t forget about it. The human heart craves touch, and soul and passion and love, and we can try and squelch this out by masking it with clichéd entertainment and a screen of happy pictures, but it just ain’t gonna work. I’m writing my way back to being the person who believes that the most extraordinary part of our existence is our ability to exist and our ability to love. To find joy in our quietest moments, and to never take for granted the simple experience of being human. I want this space to something like a cup of hot chocolate; warm and sweet and stinging (a little) with the right words in the right way. Ivory avenue is the pure, untouched walk that we are journeying on, and I’m trying to capture every single drop of beauty with words… or something like that.