belonging

It has been a long time since I’ve read Miranda July’s No One Belongs Here More Than You.  So long, in fact, that I can’t really remember what it’s about.  I only remember liking it immensely, how well written it is.  The title has been revisiting me lately.  No one belongs here more than you.

How killer.  How totally weighted in truth and great feeling.  No one belongs here more than you, I think, standing in the disgruntled post office line, or to the glass-eyed elderly who wave my dad goodbye when I pick him up.  No one belongs here more than you, I remind myself, whenever recent resolutions teeter dangerously backwards, back towards the edge of crippling self-doubt.  No one, no one.  Except by ‘no one’ we mean everyone, which also includes you, my friend.  No one belongs here more than you.  Believe me.

This morning, I woke to a Facebook message from my aunt.  A picture of me (surprisingly underdressed) at church 20 years ago.  The quintessence of belonging:image_1363299092245187

Eh?  Eh??  I’m missing those marvelous socks.

In other news, thought I’d show you the invitations I was talking about last week.  Must confess, when my cousin first sent me the link – this link here, of what she wanted her invitations to look like – something akin to panic coursed through me.  I saw the potential complications, the difficult configuration, the many sticks of glue I’d require.  But if you know my cousin, these are very like her.  And, part of the beauty of her expecting a girl is celebrating the joyful sass she will inevitably inspire in a mini-her.

Voici:

photo 1

photo 4

All that hammering I referred to in the last post was the last minute inspiration to stud the opening with eyelets.  Also, the bling?  I figure once you play the animal-print card, you kind of have to go all the way.  Right?

photo 4-1photo 1-1

A marathon of Vicar of Dibley, plus the Colin Firth Pride and Prejudice later, and 45 invites were made.

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When my cousin saw them, she touched them so gently, thanked me so sweetly.  And then, not even two minutes after she left, my phone rang.  Her again.  She proceeded to give me an earful of love and encouragement, and for some reason it struck quite deep.

I mention this moment because, every now and then, I still feel like that child in the picture when it comes to my family – that side of it, anyway.  There is such an age gap between me and my cousins, and growing up, I often felt like they were all standing on a vast foreign land, while I stood on my island quite alone.  Eventually I found company, expanded my space, traveled.  I also realized we are simply different, those cousins and I, with different friends, different interests…  But as I’ve grown older, I’ve become closer to some of them.  And, whenever we connect, unexpectedly, I always feel the love extra keenly.

I used to mourn not belonging, and in equal measures, I’d bemoan the impermanence of things.  Neither are really important.  Because no one belongs here more than you, and them, and “here” will always change with much certainty.

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4 thoughts on “belonging

  1. What a cute picture of you Elisa :)… And i love that sentiment: “no one belongs here more than you”. Why is it so difficult to feel that way? Adding this to my personal list of mantras! Thank you so much for sharing. You are such a lovely being!

    • thank you friend! and, you’re right, it is difficult to feel this way – it’s awkward, chilly. but there IS a home for us, nestled into this good, wide earth. especially for you!

  2. p.s. when did emoticons become automatic?? If I had known my kind and subtle smiley face would automatically turn into that somewhat creepy looking emoticon, I would have abstained… : )

some sugar

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