Tuesday, February 2, 2010

On inertia.

Things are calming down here, virus-wise, in the philosophical household. The incredible inertia of the third trimester, too, is sitting over me like a lead cloud. It feels like acedia, that spiritual sloth of uncaring, being unable to care, that Kathleen Norris describes so well:

The demon of acedia—also called the noonday demon—is the one that causes the most serious trouble of all. He presses his attack upon the monk about the fourth hour and besieges the soul until the eighth hour. First of all he makes it seem that the sun barely moves, if at all, and that the day is fifty hours long. Then he constrains the monk to look constantly out the windows, to walk outside the cell, to gaze carefully at the sun to determine how far it stands from the ninth hour [or lunchtime], to look this way and now that to see if perhaps [one of the brethren appears from his cell].

There is a great temptation in these last three months to always be looking out of my cell window: How many more days? How much longer? It's been a long road with this little friend inside me already, and today it seems endless. Time barely moves, just as I wish I barely had to move.

Third trimester inertia, however, does not have to turn into acedia. In the moments when I allow myself to obey the pleas of my other children, or the gentle urgings of my husband ("Go get some exercise!"), the time begins to move again as I begin to move again. And at the end-of-the-day moments--reading in bed or watching a movie--I think this is going so fast. Inertia suddenly becomes my friend, and I want to just let myself rest in those endless hours of pregnancy. Take a breath and simply be here and now.

With my little noonday demon. He thought he'd threaten my peace, did he?

It sure makes getting up and blogging difficult, though...

1 comment:

Karyn said...

I'm so with you. I'm in the last month and really have to resist the temptation to just sit and space out. On the one hand, each day seems so slow, on the other hand, it's going so fast! Thanks for the reminder to enjoy these last days of pregnancy.