It’s not often that we catch our daughter in a moment of repose. The world is too big, too exciting, too explorable for her to sit still for more than a fraction of a second. If I ask her to come and sit on my lap and tell me about her day, she comes running, gleefully, and touches down like some winged thing. And then, before I have a chance to wrap my arms around her, she’s off again, a bird of prey soaring away with something snatched in her talons. She’s a will-o’-the-wisp, materializing in unexpected places, and then slipping away before I’ve fully realized she was there. She’s a pioneer, pushing every frontier, striking breathlessly through liminal spaces, a tiny human-shaped vessel going where none have gone before.
And yet there is a quiet place in this little dynamo. There is an eye to the storm, a still center about which great energies revolve.
I glimpse these moments and I imagine a strange alchemy which converts energy from her recently wind-milling limbs into conceptual fuel. The propellent ignites from a spark in her synapses, and her mind goes questing, boldly travelling her internal infinities.
Or perhaps there is repose both inside and out. Perhaps in these moments her mind empties itself of the myriad distractions of this world. She finds calm. She finds peace. She finds simplicity. And she quietly refills her psychic reserves, safe in sanctuary, before launching back into the wide world of possibilities.
I’m pretty sure I’ll never know what secret conversations she has with herself in these moments; I think I like it that way. Because as I watch her and imagine, mystery and possibility fills my head, too.