There was a list in my head, when I contemplated leaving my job last spring, of things I knew I wanted to do, things that take more time.  I wanted to drink more tea.  That sounds ridiculous, I know.  Anyone can find the time to brew a cup of tea and drink it.  Except I never did.  And now I do.

I also wanted to walk more.  Walking is great exercise and an excellent alternative to, and break from, running.  But it takes much more time to get a workout equal to running by walking.  Now at least once or twice a week I go with David on his morning walk.  Yesterday we walked the snowmobile trail through the woods, where the first skims of ice are forming on puddles.

The night before I’d gone to the retirement party of a friend and colleague.  I saw many people there who I hadn’t seen since I left my job, and everyone wanted to know how my retirement is going.  “Well, I’m actually working a good bit,” I said, not able to call what my life is like now retirement.  I have several hours of work a week on various projects, and am considering taking on a fairly major commitment (more about that later).  But I’m also writing a novel, working on poems, reading, spending lots of time with family and friends, drinking tea and walking.  And stopping to admire the patterns of oak leaves locked under cross-hatched ice.


About Grace Mattern

Grace Mattern is a poet, writer, mother, grandmother, partner, friend, family member, gardener, triathlete, hiker and for 30 years was the Executive Director of the NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. She resigned her position at the Coalition on June 15, 2011 in order to concentrate on her writing, while continuing to engage in the movement to end violence against women as a consultant and advisor. Her chapbook Fever of Unknown Origin was published in 2001 and her full-length poetry book The Truth About Death was published in 2012.
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