It's seems to be a theme in my life, lately. The process of nesting signals change on the most basic level throughout the world for animals and humans alike. It's such a diverse and, yet, shared activity happening constantly that it's become almost invisible to me, and maybe to you, too. Until recently, I knew there were nests all around me, but I just didn't really notice.
Late this spring into early summer, nests just seemed to keep appearing. First there was one under my patio cover on the right side. Mama Robin fixed it all up, sat in it and then, left without laying any eggs. Next another nest was built under the patio cover on the left side. This time, Mama Robin stayed and laid eggs and fed chicks and when the chicks flew away, she left. Yet another time, in a space under the roof near my laundry room window, another Mama Robin made a nest and nurtured her brood until they flew away on their own.
I didn't see the significance of these nesting events at the time. It just seemed a happy coincidence to have 3 mamas and 3 nests with babies surrounding my home. I loved watching the process of mothering and feeding and growth of the little families. I saw the babies fly and leave the nest, never seeing the pattern in my own life or art. My children left the nest years ago. Or did they?
My daughter graduated college and got married and then, moved to get a master's degree. In June, she and her husband graduated and moved to California where he's getting a doctorate. I drove with her from here to California, helped her haul boxes and unpack feelings. My son graduated college and is working on a master's degree as well as holding down a stressful job and parenting his new baby daughter. Just last week, he moved as well to his first place as a homeowner. I drove my car filled with boxes, babysat, bought groceries, made sandwiches and listened while he unloaded as well. I see, I'm like the Mama Robin, flying back and forth helping my children grow into bigger and better lives.
As the robins built their nests and my children moved theirs, I was doing my own version of nesting without realizing it. For these last 5 months, I've been cleaning out closets all around my house. I've unpacked and re-packed and cleaned out everything from baby clothes, books and movies to old paintings, fiber art, sculptures and advertising portfolios.
I've also re-arranged or re-nested my studio, hallway, patio, front entry adding new equipment, wall art, flowers and cushions. I've added 'baby' shelves to the kitchen and bathroom for my little granddaughter's needs plus portable toy boxes filled with much loved books and toys.
Just last weekend, I bought a new rug for the great room. I'm planning to add new chairs, ottomans and a couch soon, replacing the family sectional couch that has been our family nest for 20 years. My 'babies' have their own nests now.
And, I guess, it's time for me to move on, too, and find things that fit my life now. Re-nest!