Time for another Monday Musings. Herein I discuss moving back home and some astronomy-related thoughts – ending with my ideal heaven. =)
I moved back home last weekend! =)
Overall it’s been a difficult transition back into my life. I didn’t want to get my hopes up too much over last weekend’s false start. I’m still recovering, technically, and when I’m at home I have to move around quite a bit more than I’m used to when staying at my mom’s. Also, weekends have been traditionally hectic. End result: it was a hard weekend, as expected, but I can handle it. I’m back for good. =)
I’m still not as productive at home as I’d like to be. I can handle housework for about 30 minutes before my hip and back start bothering me. If I don’t take a break when that starts to happen, and just push through it (a mistake I made Saturday morning), then the pain sticks with me all day and there’s little I can do about it. Eventually it got to a point Saturday where all I could do was sit in the recliner in the War Room and hurt.
Handling the kids is a challenge as well. After last weekend, I’ve been taking precautions to prevent any of them from climbing onto me when I’m sitting or lying down. It’s difficult, especially with Caspian who wants to crawl all over me, but it’s worth it being home.
I learned something interesting from the History Channel’s Facebook feed: today is the 42nd anniversary of the launching of Apollo 12, which carried three fellow humans from the Earth to the Moon, where they landed. As a child, I never really considered the moon to be an interesting target. It always seemed normal and boring to me, just a circle of rock in the sky, never really changing beyond the predictable wax and wane of its cycle. This was never a conscious expression, but simply how I felt.
I don’t feel that way anymore. Thinking about space, and the stars, the planets, the Moon – anything at all – fills me with a feeling that I can’t quite describe. I’ve been trying to for the past couple weeks, but I haven’t gotten very far. I even started posting about it last week in what I thought was going to become a series of posts, but this feeling is so nebulous and vague that it’s been difficult organizing my thoughts around it in order to condense blog posts out.
It’s a scary feeling, sometimes overwhelming and disorienting. It’s got something to do with the scale of the universe: the fact that I’m literally stuck to the surface of a ball that’s spinning and revolving and moving with the rest of the solar system and galaxy in a grand dance that’s been happening for billions of years and will continue to happen for billions or trillions more. The literal truth of all this is staggering if you think about it too deeply.
Lately I’ve found myself in situations where my mind is lost in infinity, and something happens that pulls my awareness back. This morning for example I was walking with G to the gas station down the street from my office, and we were walking pretty much in silence. I was looking at the sky on the way to the store, thinking about what’s beyond it – and G started talking about work. Listening to him, I was immediately torn in two – part of me still thinking about the fact that there are 28 galaxies out there for each person down here, the other part considering what he’d said. The juxtaposition of my worlds – the vast outer world we call the universe, and the immensely small world inside my mind – it was a sudden context switch I wasn’t quite prepared for, and I stammered, trying to reply to whatever he’d said (which I don’t remember now).
It was jarring and unpleasant, mostly because I like being out there. I really enjoy thinking those grand thoughts about the nature of reality, and I wish I could spend my life thinking them – or, better yet, all eternity. If I had my wish, I would witness the transformation of our galaxy, when Andromeda consumes it and changes everything we know about our home in the universe. Or the moment when the Sun’s hydrogen fusion ends and gives way to the burning of helium, expanding to engulf its first three worlds. I would give anything to experience the moment when I pass into the event horizon of a black hole, falling towards its (theoretically) infinitely small singularity, watching as time itself begins to contract around me. I would stand vigil over a stellar nursery, watching the formation and birth of each new star.
If there’s an afterlife, this is what my ideal form of it would be: existing as an unburdened consciousness, free to travel wherever I like, whenever I like, to experience… everything.