meander: to wander aimlessly or casually without urgent destination
I like the word meander. It has a nice ring these days. Going from one thing/interest to another without guilt. Without having to explain to another person. I haven’t always been able to do that. I don’t mean just circumstances. I mean that mentally and emotionally I wasn’t able to. When I was teaching I was very task-oriented. When I quit working and stayed at home for most of the twelve years before my separation, I wasted so much time waiting for D to get home or for D to decide he wanted dinner or…etc. He didn’t ask me to be that way. I allowed too much of who I was to depend upon where he was, who he was, what he was doing, why he called me on the phone every few minutes (guilt?), why he couldn’t even go to the grocery store without checking in with me at least three times. Was his glucose low? Whew! I needed to get a life, didn’t I?
And now I have one. A good one. I take the time to enjoy the bees and beads and buttons and all the beauty and color around me. Why bees? That’s a tough question. Beads and buttons are easier. Beads are beautiful and I can make a drab piece of work sparkle with a few beads. I can write messages with beads. My grandchildren and I have made some “gorgeous” pieces of jewelry for their moms with beads. Very versatile, beads. And buttons. Buttons are timeless, I think. They remind me of happy childhood moments with my mom and my “maw.” I have lots of old and new and everything-in-between buttons. My youngest granddaughter learns all kinds of things with buttons–counting, colors, sets, adding, subtracting. And how to pick up and put away, if I’m lucky.
But why bees? One of my favorite books is The Secret Life of Bees. I love honey, especially New Zealand honey. Bacteria cannot grow in honey. Honey is used for healing wounds because it won’t foster bacteria. But bees sting! When I was a child I would get stung on the foot at least two or three times a summer. And it hurt like hell. And my foot would swell to twice its normal size in a matter of minutes. But still I would race through fields of clover in the hope that I’d be lucky and not step on a bee. I’m wiser now. I wear shoes when I walk through fields. So why am I attracted to something that can hurt me so much? Is the honey bee my metaphor for D? Maybe. But I think I’m wise enough not to get stung again.