been making soap over the weekend. it's one of those earthy creative things that helps keep me sane. like gardening, and making music, baking cookies, and sewing with beautiful fabric. something about combining the work of my hands with the work of my mind pulls all the disparate parts of life into focus, and helps blow out the fluff. takes some of the sharp edges off me.
And soap is so satisfying to make - it's a small miracle how a pot of greasy fat and a piltcher of vile smelling and toxic lye water can produce this gentle, lovely-smelling cleanser. it's the last thing anyone would expect from either of the original products. then i add essential oils, plant matter and moisturizers and end up with this luxurious gourmet subsatnce that's so richly colored and scented that it would seem decadent if i hadn't made it with my own two hands... from fat and lye.
i could buy my soap for less than it costs to make, but i don't handle all the scents and things they put in manufactured soap. and that stuff doesn't give me the little glow of pleasure every time i use it, that turns a plain old bath or shower or washing of hands into a small occasion for celebration.
facing a job interview in the city on Tuesday, for a job i think i'd love. but i'm not sure how i'd love living in the city. it makes a lot of sharp edges on me. i might have to make a lot of soap and bake a lot of cookies. but 3 of my 4 kids are there, and my granchild, none of whom i see nearly enough the way things are now. i need to be more accessible. there's still stuff they need to learn about what family is, and what family does, that no one else is going to teach them.
i made the soap to get my feet on the ground, and get in touch with what's important. yes, working at something you enjoy is important, but i don't hate my present job. i could probably keep doing it for some time. so it's less about the job, and about me personally, and more about being part of a family. my siblings, parents, ,cousins, etc are a group of islands, ,with very little travel from port to port. i don't want that for my children and my grandchildren. isn't it part of our job as parents to try to make things better for coming generations? i think that means all usual things - making our communities safe and pleasant places for them, and providing opportunities for them to discover their gifts and excell at them. But doesn't it also mean rooting out those family traditions that didn't enrich our lives, that, rather did the opposite, and replacing those with new things, that will become more healthy traditions?
it's all really a non-issue anyway, right now, as i haven't even had the interview, let alone been offered the job.
time to go have a long, relaxing bath by candlelight, with a bar of rich, earthy, soul satisfying soap