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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Thoughts From the Veranda

Camillo has left for two days in Macae. He has barely walked out the door when the silence of the house on the hill surrounds me, a silence so profound that I can hear my own heartbeat in my ears, the soft splat, splat of the moisture from the fog hitting the roof, a lone bird calling, a clock ticking.  I have a second cup of coffee.  I make the bed.  I load the breakfast dishes into the dishwasher.  I have a load of laundry to do. Fifteen minutes has passed.  A day less 15 minutes is in front of me.

DSC00545All the time I am doing these basic chores, I make an effort to frame a day that will pass filled, happy. No not happy but content.  I can run into Friburgo and do a spinning class.  I can call Tatiana for lunch.  I can work down in the vegetable garden, turn some soil, try to make something grow.  Pull weeds. Take photos. The two days will pass.

But I get dressed, putting on shorts and a work top, no workout cloths and I know this mean I won’t go into town, but I ignore that knaggy little voice that knows I won’t do any of the plan for the day.  I already have my excuses ready. I drove into town two times yesterday and will go tomorrow, why today?  If I want I can go later to bike class but, then it will be raining. I have to wait for the gardener to leave for the day before I can go down and work in the vegetable garden. And by the time he leaves it will be raining.

I have heard all of these before, all the excuses. I know that this indicates a deep depression, one I am able to ignore on a daily basis but one that always comes to the front when alone, in the silence, in the house on the hill. {My computer is in the shop getting a new hard drive} I go upstairs to Camillo’s computer and look at some blogs I follow. I read B&B for my daily dose of humor and write a long comment,  momentary feelings of connection to the real world.  I see one from Texas Heather, I open it. Today she talks of purpose. What she says strikes a deep cord in me. Purpose, purpose is missing. I float from day to day, month to month until another year has passed and then another. If I had a purpose what could it be?  

She asks “… if there were one word that would describe what you want for yourself in the next year what would it be?” I am stymied.  I awake every morning with my first thought being, ‘I want to go home’. I go to sleep each night with the thought, ‘I want to go home’. Camillo’s says if you want to go – GO.  But then what?  Heather has used just the right word.  Purpose.  This is what Camillo is telling me, for what purpose would I go. How would my purpose be different in Houston than it is up here on this hill?  If I don’t have a dream, a plan, A PURPOSE here, will I have one there? The thought that I would have no purpose there stops me, freezes, frightens. Maybe this feeling is not about being here but the lack of purpose in general. 

How has this happened? I have always been motivated, energetic, interested and now I’m floating just to get by, to pass the day, tick tock, tick tock goes the clock.


  1. Home is such a comforting thought, but it's eye-opening to consider what would in fact be different there. I love visiting 'home', but each time reminds me I wouldn't want to live there! Finding purpose where you are is not easy, though.

    I wish you all the best in constructing your purpose. You can do it. You're thoughtful and smart.

  2. I, too, am a floater. We've talked about that. A lack of purpose is exactly what it feels like. I could never put words to it before to understand it, but here they are.

    Maybe that's what it takes to change it; to define it. I'm going to try working with this. I'd love to hear how this goes for you.

  3. Hoping and praying, Ginger, that you find purpose and the desire/will/ability to live purposefully. You have so much to share with us younger folk -- I hope you keep it up.

    I hope whatever purpose finds you, whatever purpose you find, it still includes sharing with your bloggy friends.

    Praying for you, and I hope the inspiration you drew from my post (which I drew from another...) turns out to be a good thing. No, a great thing.

    Um abraco,

  4. I just wanted to wish you luck, and to lend whatever support I can from over here... I hope you can identify a purpose you're happy with, but I recommend caution over any statements beginning "I'll be happy when...", that's a trap I've fallen into too many times.

  5. It was realizing that part of my depression was a lack of feeling in control and that what I did had purpose that led to me first choosing a word.

    Maybe you should start with one and see where it leads you. Home - what is it? I've lived too many places to feel completely at home either side of the ocean :(

    Hope you find some peace.

  6. I found your blog from Texas Heather's. I read your questions to her and you seemed so interesting. I loved the way you gently pushed her to learn more about her camera. So I drifted over to your blog and I read about you. How wonderful to find someone so open and willing to say what they are feeling. You have a wonderful way of expressing yourself....capturing the small moment. I imagine that you are in a transition and it will be hard. I am not really in a position to advise you, so take this with a grain of salt. :) But I just wanted to say to relax a little. Don't try too hard to find that purpose. Let it happen naturally. At least for me, when I try to find it, it evades me. When I let the moments come and push myself out of my comfort zone just a little, I find it. Does that make any sense at all? I look forward to reading more. :) Lisa~ www.livingmybestlifeii-lisa.blogspot.com

  7. Home.....I just found your site and this is the first entry I have read. I'm intrigued and want to read more.

    I identify on many levels...floating. Although my purpose at the moment is one: I am a 48 year old single mother with a 5 year old. That is my purpose. Without her, I'm not sure what my purpose would be?

    We live on a horse property ....east of Phoenix in Arizona....While this has been a wonderful retreat.. I wonder too if "home" is where we need to be? But then, where is home? Is it in me? Is it with family?

    Depression...aloneness can exacerbate it....I find for me I can move through it and let it be ...and then sometimes I need a change of scenery to get there quicker. Help someone else....Call someone....something...and sometimes being there is ok too.
    Just being...allowing...letting....I wonder if we all let go of the many layers we build upon the initial block ....if it will all just be ok...move smoothly...change into something else...it's all ok....it's all ok....

  8. Hellooooo Ginger!

    As always, I love your posting.

    I certainly do understand how difficult it is sometimes to understand 'home'...it's probably the most complex word when it isn't just referring to a slab of real-estate (dead give-away that I'm a city gal to the core.)

    For myself it's home when I have those that I love surrounding me...and, when they aren't within easy reach, I feel like I am a million miles from home. Right now my Jacqueline is back in Italy to visit with family and friends...so, that part of my home she has taken with her...there is a stillness in some respects about the house that is beyond explanation. My son Joseph didn't join her...and so, he keeps another part of home warm. There were times when the two would be away and the silence within my walls was deafening. At those times, I felt that 'home' was just a place I maintained because I am suppose to be the keeper of their 'home'...for when they came home...they didn't just come back to NJ...they came to me!

    Ginger...your blog is so rich in your sense of home...so go finish that load of laundry and enjoy the scent of that part of home!

    Here's wishing you and all a very wonderful trip into this new decade...snap snap snap away lady...you're making me realize I really do need to add new pics to my own blog!

    Claire / OWW

  9. Claire, yes this is the definition of HOME, my problem begins with having said yes to Camillo that I would go to Brasil with him. I had NO clue of what that would mean. The loss of language, of knowledge of the systems - medical, shopping, (I learned money very fast, but cooking with these ingredients is still difficult) driving, lack of friends (we have Camillo's friends in which I have affection) MY own friends which is so important.... I am just missing the world as I have known it.....

  10. Oh Ginger...I do pray that Camillo recognizes that he was indeed blessed, with a treasure, when you agreed to be a part of his life. You continue, in spite of your own woes and difficulties, to share the more glorious gifts of life. You enrich the everyday of so many with your beautiful pictures and stories of life in your little corner of Brazil. When you share your inner self, you are assuring others that they are indeed not alone...

    I am always delighted to visit here. Perhaps, one day, when you are in my little spot on the globe we might meet for coffee.


    Claire / OWW