My Mundane Monday

notebook in lamplight

(Nottingham-famous, Tom Jepson, has laid out a challenge to create content, daily, for the month of December. This is day two. #Dec19ContentChallenge )

Let’s be real. I’m that person in any public transport that just needs to be using their laptop. However, as a person, clumsy is an adjective I definitely won’t find missing in the list of words summarizing rizwana. (My mother has twice as many stories on this matter than I could ever begin to begin, and yes she’ll both scowl and smile, in that motherly way, at the chance to tell you all of these..)

I guess what that I’m trying to express is I should not be balancing an almost 1K MacBook on my crossed legs on a double-decker bus as it wobbles through morning rush hour. The chance for its demise skyrockets at every pothole, and I am short of kidneys required for Apple’s newest beast.

Yet, this morning, I did it again. Sun blinding the screen, the words I read had the kind of light that would make even darkness happily take its leave. (Joy has become a noun I have more recently been paying attention to. Before it, was clarity. Plus, home, forever persistently.)

Maria Popova writes wonderfully on, poet and gardener, Ross Gay, and his “yearlong experiment in learning to notice, amid a world that so readily gives us reasons to despair, the daily wellsprings of delight..”.

Ross’s words I daren’t rephrase:

"I dreamed a few years back that I was in a supermarket checking out when I had the stark and luminous and devastating realization — in that clear way, not that oh yeah way — that my life would end. I wept in line watching people go by with their carts, watching the cashier move items over the scanner, feeling such an absolute love for this life. And the mundane fact of buying groceries with other people whom I do not know, like all the banalities, would be no more so soon, or now. Good as now.


Among the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard anyone say came from my student Bethany, talking about her pedagogical aspirations or ethos, how she wanted to be as a teacher, and what she wanted her classrooms to be: “What if we joined our wildernesses together?” Sit with that for a minute.


It astonishes me sometimes — no, often — how every person I get to know — everyone, regardless of everything, by which I mean everything — lives with some profound personal sorrow. Brother addicted. Mother murdered. Dad died in surgery. Rejected by their family. Cancer came back. Evicted. Fetus not okay. Everyone, regardless, always, of everything. Not to mention the existential sorrow we all might be afflicted with, which is that we, and what we love, will soon be annihilated. Which sounds more dramatic than it might. Let me just say dead. Is this, sorrow, of which our impending being no more might be the foundation, the great wilderness? Is sorrow the true wild? And if it is — and if we join them — your wild to mine — what’s that? For joining, too, is a kind of annihilation. What if we joined our sorrows, I’m saying. I’m saying: What if that is joy?.”

As if my mother has heard me mentioning her in these set of words, trying to dismantle my awe for Ross and his soul-shaking words, my mother sends, just now, in that motherly way, two emojis depicting sandwiches in the family WhatsApp group, followed by a set of question marks. She finds her daughter has left her packed breakfast on the kitchen counter, yet again.

There are graver sorrows than forsaken toast.

I can persist to accept today for a normally perfect day.

Until next time.


👈 Head back?