i love christmas. i hate christmas. i love beautiful snow laden trees and moon reflected glowy nights. i hate dark days and freezing solitude. i love the rebirth of a fresh year. i hate the emotional upheaval of lost days, endings, and missed moments.
high school. there was one winter that is pristine in my memory, the penultimate for a young teenager with hope in her heart and stars in her eyes. that makes it sound much more dramatic than it should. but i suppose the important thing was that in the moment, nothing could be better.
and of course, what solidifies such a moment? the moment's end. and once life was once again tarnished by so many things, you are drawn back over and over to that seemingly perfect moment. you polish it reverently, till the edges are smoothed away, till it becomes something it never was, gleaming, perfect, infinite.
remembrances are all well and good. but a pearl is a dangerous memory. nothing in the moment can ever compare to something enhanced by such attention. if you are lucky, you have other good experiences, good days. and with time, these events will also be lifted above themselves. perhaps only your own memories can save you from your memories. the brightness of the new cherished memory dims the glow of the old.
as a child you have endless hope and future opportunity. then you have successes and failures. you lose things and you gain things. as you get farther down your own time line, you begin to see -or imagine you see- the endgame. with the end come the limits, not of your abilities or even your chances but of your time to reach those abilities, fulfill those chances.
how easy it is to get lost in the past, polishing, instead of living and creating new moments to remember a decade from now.
my sister recently talked about getting rid of her "box" -that collection of items that link you physically to memories, people, time. my "box" still lives on the walls of my childhood bedroom--mementos, pictures, posters of productions from high school to college to grad school and beyond. my mother told me she takes my little cousins on trips into "the museum" as they call it. that is frightening.
new moments to the old. i want to fill the museum of my heart all up till it's full to bursting.
we do this in acting. prepare, prepare, prepare. image, elucidate, fill out the corners of the imagined life, till you walk out on stage and it pours through you unconsciously.
course, the danger is living in the old and not making the new. this is my challenge for the new year. to prepare my real life as i do for the stage, to keep making the memories to out shine the old.