Monday, July 13, 2009

194/365 Present, Past, Future

We spent most of the day strolling the streets of midtown, taking in the sights. For some (KF, IG) these were new. For me these sights, sounds, and smells were familiar but distant memories. The girls stood before the lions of the NY Public library, atop a balcony in the bustling Grand Central Terminal, surrounded by the beauty of the majestic stained glass windows of St. Patrick's cathedral, and beneath the marquees of the Booth theater, and Carnegie and Radio City Music Halls. Then they lay on the grass of the lawns of Central Park, a respite from our day of near-incessant walking. The present, our lives as family and friends, walking, eating (Carnegie Deli Mmmmm) and sharing our experiences.

Our afternoon at the Central Park Zoo, KZ, twin first-graders in tow, made the trek in from Jersey. I'm her oldest friend, she told me. But of course that cannot mean we're old! Both of us responsible mommies, so different than our attempts at sowing our oats in junior high. The past lives in our hearts and shapes who we are.

And this evening a remarkable show, Next to Normal, an intense and emotional journey. The show had a lyric reminding us again that loving means we have pain, but we love anyway (or something like that), and it's true. Kids grow up and move on. Loving means losing in a way, and learning when to hold on and when to let go. Waiting by the stage door, chatting with the cast, our future Tony recipient spoke to the latest winner, listening to her advice on discipline and creativity. Alice Ripley told her that we practice our art every day. Sometimes we're paid to do it, sometimes we're not, but it's the discipline. It's sticking with a teacher. It's working hard. Wise words, not unlike those spoken by a young artist's parents and teacher, but maybe more powerful from this source. The future, full of pain and yet full of potential.


Beth said...

Wow--this post gave me chills. What an awesome experience for IG. Safe travels home!

MJ said...

Gave me chills, too. IG and KF are so lucky to be experiencing NYC with you guys!

JSG said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EJG said...

It gave me chills, too.... and I was there! Nice writing, JSG.

Kathy said...

Beatifully put, JG. I am so happy that our friendship bridges the past, present and future. Hope it's not another year before we see each other again.