Bean (my 14yo) was telling me today about how some metal and rock musicians will leave a really long silence after the last track on their album… sometimes up to ten or fifteen minutes… and then there’s a hidden track… a reward for true fans who can sit through the silence and wait for it. He said some nights he’ll just sit on his bed in total silence and wait for it.
There is something sublimely beautiful to me about a young person, a teenager, sitting in quiet anticipation.
There is a poignancy in that almost haunting stillness.
And I daydream a collective biding our time. Thoughts waft by; we can chase a few down rabbit holes or float in a nothingness of expectant mindfulness, knowing our reward is near, any moment now, the hidden track, the awareness we are seeking, the word on the tip of our tongue.
Stillness is powerful. Waiting, in today’s world can seem unnecessarily dull.
And it dawns on me. The lesson. These things happen sometimes when something someone says intrigues me so, that I want to ponder it, mull it over, hold it in my hand and carry it like a talisman until its wisdom breaks open for me.
We are in a period of waiting, as a family, for our house to be built. And in the time of COVID, there are understandable delays. In the meantime, things are less than ideal. The current structure on the property we bought is old and not well insulated.
My work-at-home office is off the shop until the house gets here, and it’s a good-sized space, but again, not insulated. It will be 44 degrees when I start my day wearing all sorts of layers, a lap blanket, hat and gloves. Yes, I have a space heater. No, it doesn’t provide instant warmth.
There’s not a lot of water pressure. The stove doesn’t work and neither does the heater. It was the property and the shop we fell in love with and the new home that’s being built.
We are a mostly roll with it family, so we’re doing amazingly well under the circumstances. We still make memories together and have a good time. We still have family dinners, and read together, and share our favorite movies with the girlfriends of our boys, so they can be in on the inside jokes of quoting favorite lines back and forth.
One day, these months will be a distant memory. We won’t even remember except in funny stories about all the things falling apart on the house that isn’t really our home. We find ourselves grateful a lot – looking forward to the days when these little irritations and inconveniences are a thing of the past.
In the meantime, there is waiting, and a stillness that, if I let it, can be beautiful, inspiring, hauntingly gorgeous, meditative, and soul-building.
What is your waiting room like right now? For what are you anticipating? Or how are you enjoying stillness?
(Photo by Pradeep Charles on Unsplash)