Andrea Lani
Mother ~ Nature ~ Writer
Of time you would make a stream upon whose bank you would sit and watch its flowing.
Yet the timeless in you is aware of life's timelessness,
And knows that yesterday is but today's memory and tomorrow is today's dream. 
~Khalil Gibran
Ever since I heard the poet Naomi Shihab Nye say a few years ago that she had excised the word "busy" from her vocabulary, I've tried to do the same. Now, whenever the B word hovers on my lips, I try to instead think of life as "full" or "abundant." Whenever things start to get a little too full, I know it's time to cut back.

But I have a hard time cutting back in May, the most abundant month of all, with three kids' birthdays, spring sports, our annual camping trip, and the hurtle toward the end of the school year. It's the time of year I most want to slow down and reflect on my children's growth and changes (and my own) and watch the unfolding of spring outside my window, yet it's the time of year when slowing down is most difficult.

This week brought the most significant birthday of my mothering career so far (not counting the actual birth days of my children): M turned 18 on Monday. At the time of his first birthday, my go-to line (only semi-joking) was I don't know how he can be one, because I'm not a year older. The same holds true today: I don't know how he can be 18, because I'm most certainly not 18 years older. And also, I don't know how he can be 18. I've been making lots of jokes about how my work is finished (or "done 'n dusted," as I like to say), but I'm also barely holding down a large burst of freaking out.

Which is where a month of great abundance comes in handy. We threw a party for M with 50 or so of his nearest and dearest (what can I say, the kid is loved), and, in the spirit of not completely giving his younger brothers the shaft, we had a much, much smaller party and sleepover for E and Z the previous night. We still have various playoffs to attend and a camping trip to pack for and unpack from, I'm attending a writing conference at the end of the month, and I try to squeeze in a bird walk here and there. At some point, however, the abundance will abate, and I won't have any choice but to will slow down and reflect on the fact that my first baby is 18 years old.
Upcoming Workshops
Summer Nature Journaling. Fields Pond Audubon Center. Holden, Maine. June 30, 2019.
Sea Kayaking and Nature Journaling. Castine, Maine. September 7-8, 2019.
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Writing and Editing
I offer copy writing, proofreading, and content editing services for all types of projects.
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Literary Mama
I'm an editor in the Literary Reflections department at the online journal Literary Mama. We seek great essays about the intersection of motherhood and literature.
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Happiest of springs to you, dear friends. May you find time this month to slow down and savor this moment in life and enjoy the abundance. 
~ Andrea
Copyright © 2019 Andrea Lani, All rights reserved.

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