Listening to the Landscape of the Heart: What a Single Mom Does With Time Off: UPDATE!

I love to talk but, I am listening more. To others, yes. And mostly to the landscape visions of my heart. Three months ago, I got honest about feeling depleted: not knowing what to do with myself when my vibrant nine year old is off adventuring with her dad. When I attended my 30th high school reunion, I re-found my fifth grade best friend, Jenn. My heart stirred. I wanted to see her again. I wanted to recapture the fun, silly, “class dreamer” that thrived during high school — I wanted to see her (meaning Pamela) again, too.

So, I meditated. I listened. I got clear. And I planned.

I began to envision the things I love most: walking with a friend on the beach, farm fruits and flowers, nostalgic novels, memory making with my parents, and grooving to ELVIS (yup, I said ‘Elvis’).

Then, I pulled out the calendar, projected ahead, set dates, sent text messages, and penciled in the plans on the paper calendar (yup, I said ‘paper calendar’)

This past weekend was the realization of one of those projected “dates”: a morning outing with my friend Jen. Despite a cloudy day, Jen and I planned to eat breakfast, stroll, and reminisce at Front Beach in Rockport, Massachusetts.

It became our time to become chatty-giggly-preteen-girls again! 


We spent the morning revisiting over fluffy omelets in Nate’s Cafe, reimagining frolicking fun in a stone tower overlooking the sea, and recreating high school memories in a scenic garden: “We could play cards in the tower overlooking the beach…” I dreamed, “…or we could redesign our Senior Pictures, as they would look today.”

We giggled. And we did it!

This is our mini-senior-picture-photo shoot revised in present day! (circa 1987)

We laughed: “This is what forty-eight year old women do for fun; they  ‘photo shoot’ each other!”

We also deeply appreciate the roses,

the clapboard homes sitting at the shore,

and the open, warm hearts of one another.

Before we said goodbye, we projected our next outing (maybe camping with our significant others: her boyfriend Bruce and my daughter Grace). In our final conversation, Jen sweetly stated, “Pam, you were so cute. You planned this a month ago.  I am so glad you did.”

“It’s how I need to do things,” I stated,  “I have learned. If I want to enjoy my life, the moments I get to re-energize, then, I project out, plan, invite, and show up.”

We embraced. We let go. We now hold on to next time.

As I continue to explore the Landscape of My Heart, I realize that this is what living is really about. Yes, projecting and planning. But mostly, embracing, letting go, and holding on to next time.

We view our ‘unfolding’ life much in the way we gaze at an ocean vista, taking it in all at once, and then one sentimental section at a time. We then allow the memories to be re-lived like the foamy waves moving onto the shore…one at time. There’s then a gentle joy in placing our hands in that liquid-like dreaming. It makes us want to reach out and embrace again and again and again.

So to my gracious girlhood companion, thank you creating new happy-memory ripples this weekend. Thank you for projecting and planning with me. Thank you for embracing the Landscape of My Heart. I carry you there, forever, and I hold on to our “next time”.

With Blessings and Peace,

Pamela Rae


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