There is a bamboo flourishing on my kitchen windowsill. It’s a light green stalk, proudly standing tall with leaves sprouting out in many directions. When I first got it, I put it in a tall clear glass with river rocks, because that’s what Ikea recommended. And, of course, Ikea is the definitive guide on creativity in the home. That was about a year ago.
Now, the roots have sprouted and tangled every which way around the stones. I change the water once a week. In the beginning, per online instructions, I would pour the stones out and dry any impurities out, before adding new filtered water. It was a bit of a production, and so now I gingerly pour out old water, and add the new, careful not to disturb the delicate life within. Yet, the entire production, fits neatly in a corner windowsill, and everything the happy bamboo is, its entire ecosystem, could be moved at will.It seemed wrong for this plant to have such a portable existence, all of its undergirth subject to scrutiny and changed at someone else’s whim.
I grew up a nomad, living in dozens of places, and I have spent the last decade in pursuit of something. Pursuit of dreams, pursuit of success, pursuit of artistry, pursuit of happiness. I have been convinced that everything else is a distraction along the way.
I don’t know how many times I have moved in the last decade, and how many years I have lived out of suitcases…included the current one. And, now, something in me longs for roots. Stability. To build something somewhere.
It’s a bit of self-betrayal for those who know me. Me, the one who would be content to live on a tour bus, with a backstage pass fluttering about my neck and write about rock stars, longs for a stability.
I used to dream that I would love to marry a musician and raise our kids on the road. I would dream of the exotic life I could give them. I still would love that. But, there is something to be said about roots. Home. Stability. For what is life, if not built?