Restless spirits:

This week, after Punxsutawney Phil’s proclamation that, sans shadow-sighting, we would indeed be having an early spring, spring fever kicked in. In fact, I think that if my husband never hears the words “dressy sandals” or “sundress” again, he will be a very happy man. If he never has to have another spring collection catalog shoved under his nose while I ask, “Which of these do you like?” he might even call it bliss. Considering how much I love both dressy sandals (OK, sandals of all kinds) and sundresses, he’s just going to have to settle for plain-old happy.

Since my childhood, I’ve been given to bouts of nearly indescribable, often unbearable restlessness. I can’t think of a name for it. I haven’t found a cure for it. And I have no explanation for it, whether it’s a personality quirk, a character flaw, or some sort of underlying urge to keep searching for a new challenge, adventure, or story. As a kid, I spent hours walking through the woods trying to sort out the millions of thoughts in my head and finding my feet propelled ever forward, without really being sure of where it was I was going.

And that’s precisely what this week has been. A week of fighting a restlessness that’s exhausting when forced to contend with deadlines and routines. If I gave in, I’d be driving through Tennessee right now without the slightest clue of where I was going. And yes, there’s a character for you, ever-roaming, often bored, wanting a new challenge but not sure what. I’m sure I’ll have to write her story someday, if only to help me figure out my own.

A great deal of my restless energy gets funneled into my stories. And it’s a part of my creativity. The artist in me is like a hummingbird in constant need of movement, zipping from one place to the next (although, conversely, capable of intense focus when necessary). Hours-long meetings and presentations at work find my fingers itching, my high heels sliding off and on under the table, and me fighting the urge to leave the room for a twenty-minute brisk walk. My fingers are ready for words to slip from them like water; my head has a thousand thoughts ready to let loose like a room full of trapped sparrows. I often wind up taking notes just to busy myself. Even as an adult, I can’t sit still.

It’s not that I can’t pay attention. It’s not that I can’t or won’t focus. It’s just that, when it comes down to yin and yang, I’m often a whirlpool of yang energy, the breeze playing in the curtains, the rushing mountain stream. I love earth and trees and stones because of the solidity of them. They have a grounding quality. They balance me. But I wasn’t born an earth sign. I’m fire (Sagittarius), and, well, sometimes I have more energy than I know what to do with.

So in February, I find myself wishing for summer days, pulling out my summer skirts and tops and dreaming of picnics by the water; long, exhausting hikes; and just a good old sprint through the fields with hubby and our dog.

I’m settling for a day of laundry, tarot cards, research, and writing, and following it up with dinner and a movie with friends. And I’m checking in on LJ to get some of this endless momentum out of my system. This girl’s ready for a sundress and a jar of bubbles.

Guess I really should hope that spring is right around the corner. Phil, I’m counting on you.

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