I have a private space in my house, for the first time in my married life. “A room of my own”, in the words of Virginia Woolf. It is my practice space, but it is more than that. I have plants in the window and I have a bookshelf with various music paraphernalia on it, and another bookshelf with books; some that were my mother’s; some that have been mine forever; some are gardening books I’ve gathered over the years. I love my little room, though I spend comparatively few hours there. It was Travis’s bedroom for many years, and I keep that thought sometimes when I’m in there. I feel privileged to occupy the same space my dear son used for so long. I don’t want either of my children to feel that I am glad they’re gone so I can spread myself out and use their space. I never, ever begrudged the space they occupied and I would welcome them back if they needed to return at any time. Co-existent with that same feeling and thought, there is also great pleasure in having a space to call my own, that I don’t have to share with my husband or anyone.
Recently, an orchid that was given to me by my OSM colleagues in sympathy after my mother died, has re-bloomed. I’m extremely touched by it, perhaps unreasonably so. In the middle of a dark, cold winter, it’s wonderful to see a perfect bloom emerge from such a long dormancy. People who don’t particularly appreciate flowers, probably can’t understand how much pleasure it gives me to share my little room with these blooms. Whenever I need a break from my practicing, or I just get bored or distracted, I look over and there they are: serenely existing. Is there any other flower whose blooms last for so long? For several weeks- perhaps right into spring- I can expect to enjoy their perfection.
My mother had a green thumb. Her plants were always thriving and were in her company right up until the day she died. She certainly would have enjoyed the orchids and understood my pleasure in them. Above my plant stand is a lovely picture of my mother, taken by my brother. It seemed appropriate to place the portrait there, amongst her plants that I’ve adopted and am trying to nurture as well as she did.
My room means a lot to me so I want to organize it better; de-clutter it and make it into a place of peace, quiet and reflection. When it’s not being used for really loud trombone playing, that is!