I love to be social. I love connecting and fellowship. I yearn to feel part of a community. Sometimes friendly competition illuminates my strengths in ways that everyday motivation simply cannot. Almost always the successes of my favorite people prompt me to look closer at the life I’m leading, the legacy I’m creating, and push me onward to greater – greater work, greater love, greater.
Sometimes – many and most times - I love being a blogger.
And sometimes, the beauty in silence awakens my spirit unlike anything else.
In many ways, culture plays a big part of this desire for quiet. In a grossly unscientific generalization, most Cubans I know struggle with the balance between extreme intensity and the need for a, if not brief, sedentary mental state. I call us “Crazy Cubans” in the most loving and sincere way. Hijole, sometimes a chill pill is a good thing.
I spent last week in California – watching the sun set on the beaches of my youth, laughing as my kids blew bubbles and walked hand in hand with the kids of my childhood friends; drinking cucumber mint martinis, gossiping about nothing of consequence, staring at the gentle wrinkles of my beloved best friends in awe of how those relationships could cause such peace in my soul. I didn’t check out my favorite blogs. I didn’t post what I had for dinner. I didn’t use hashtags or check Facebook. I found silence nestled with the familiar comfort of home, and I came back energized.
I am in the love with the silence I experienced last week. I’m in love with how easy life could be when you live with a confident calm that isn’t afraid to generate stillness. I speak out of fear, to ask questions or understand. Sometimes, I speak to share and to normalize. I can’t tell you how many times my self esteem suffers from words I speak that demean my identity. In my crazy little Cuban mind, a calm, quiet stillness equates to peace, safety and love.
My Dearest Alina,
Social media has become a blessing to our family. I’m a better mom, but also a more full human being, for having entered the world of sharers. I love showing the world how beautiful and wholesome mixed families are. How we feel more the same than different. How our children aren’t wrought with identity issues because their parents comes from two different cultures, races, religions. I’m proud of us and proud to share.
But in this quest to share, I am grateful for the silence that holds growth in identity too…
I think you experienced some quiet growth this week too, my sweet girl. You were more confident in your play. Less anxious in the relationships presented to you. And I always leave California wondering if silence and strength in my friendships is what causes you to steady also.
Do you feel more confident in identity because I do? I would be amazed – although not entirely surprised – if your sensitive nature picked up on these finest of cues. Building a life – a legacy, really – that manifests your most productive identity is my ultimate goal in parenting.
One thing I know for sure is that we both love the beach. The quiet pondering of the tide, going up and down. The return of the waves as they tickle your feet. For those that haven’t been lucky enough to live within the silence of the shores, it might be hard to understand, but I know that if we lived in California, you would flourish under the rhythmic life.
Do you want to live in California, my sweet girl?…
I love you and your brother with a passion that exceeds speeches and silence, beyond the horizon and into the abyss that follows the sunlight. What I would do for you – for your growth and development – is without limits. Just like this sunset. Everyday is another day to devote to our legacy…
Where will that legacy live? Time will only tell.
Te quiero por siempre mi amor,