Still Life in Motion

Oct 30, 2022

A picture captures a thousand words — life and birthday musings

I recently took this photo on a rare day off that I didn’t fill with tasks, appointments or errands — and instead slowed down, noticed things I normally breeze by. Still life in motion, it caught my eye. After I took it, I just stared at it wondering why it called for my attention. I liked its composition, its presence in my teeny tiny kitchen — and the story it tells…my story without words.

Colors, tones, textures, started to reveal a secret code, my life wrapped up in these few items. The big heavy bananas balancing perfectly on the small round clementines. A clean stack of plates and bowls with one outlier jutting out. My plant aptly named ‘Hope’, who came back to life, stretching, reaching, living her full capacity. A small vase of dried-up flowers, gasping at last sips of water. Mother Mary pendant, local artist painting. The small window with the sunlight streaming through her pane, afternoon warmth, autumn colors, a view of today. 

I breathed her in like an exquisite Renaissance painting here in my humble abode. This snapshot made me curious, quiet, contemplative. I was grateful. I was present. What a gift! 

Life around us feels like it is in perpetual motion at times (most of the time). We’re always rushing from point A to point B, pushing, grinding, putting out fires, baking cakes, living, loving, celebrating. Speaking of which...

It’s November...Scorpio season...birthday season around here as both my daughter True and I celebrate our birthdays just 9 days apart. Yes, 2 Scorpios in 1 house! Scorpio season is known for its time of transformation and change. As our physical world in the northern hemisphere undergoes dramatic transformation as colorful leaves begin to cascade and drop to the ground, the same is true within our emotional world. It’s a revealing time. 

I glance back at this picture I captured. What is it saying to me?

The outside LIGHT is always shining upon me illuminating my spirit, hope and faith are my lifeline. Life’s balancing act — no matter how heavy or unstable it may appear — is always fine...maybe better. Neither this stack of dishes, nor I, need to be perfectly lined up. My curiosity for life leads me off the beaten path where I find wonders. And my past-their-prime, dried-up roses...they remind me that there is beauty in transformation and in all phases of my life. And while I know it is good to let things go, to clear space...I hold onto them for just another day.

If you were to stop where you are right now as you are reading this and capture an image of your surroundings...what would they say? What would it reveal to you? What is it reminding you of? Allow yourself to play with the Universe.

They say that birthdays conjure up emotions. While I am a lover of celebrating the birthdays of others, I actually don’t like celebrating my own...well, at least in the conventional way.

I don’t like the attention or all eyes on me as I blow out the candles or open beautifully wrapped packages. Maybe it’s because I didn’t grow up in a house of birthday celebrations. In fact, a few of mine were forgotten. I grew up in a house where productivity was celebrated. We were more concerned with putting food on the table and paying our bills than singing Happy Birthday.

I know this experience informs how I view my birthday and yet, I want to celebrate life...always. I allow a few close friends to celebrate me because I must also practice receiving. But my heart is full of gratitude when I look around. This silly picture tells me that I’ve created a good life. I love my quirky little cottage and my sweet family, fur babies and all. I’m grateful for the work I do and the community I get to connect with. I cherish this body that has supported me through it all and I thank God for sparking my curiosity for life each day. I always want to learn more, read more, become more.

As we enter this month of November with its auspicious total lunar eclipse my wish for you, for all of us, is that we allow what needs to be seen to be seen — that we don’t judge it or hide it or pretend it isn’t a part of us. That we can look at our own shadows and witness its grace. We are all of it.

This is a time of letting go and receiving. What thoughts or habits are you ready to let go of? Where can you appreciate and value more of what you already have? And how can you see the beauty in between the two?

Yes, a birthday is a new year of sorts...but so is today, this moment, this still life.

Yes, today is a powerful moment to set a new intention. And I am grateful. My body holds the memories...especially the one of becoming a momma during Scorpio season seventeen years ago. 

I am grateful for life.

I am grateful for the life I brought forth.

I am grateful for the work I get to do, the community we have created and of course, for YOU.

Let’s celebrate it all. Yes, still like in motion.

— Lea Haas, Owner, The Garden Cafe Woodstock


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