Glimpses of a Gentler Life: How Small Moments Reveal What Matters Most

   On the second floor of our house, there used to be a resident who lived there for many years, until recently they moved out. It can be said that they are the neighbors of my family for the longest time. Although they have moved away, I often think about when they were there. Although under the influence of modern urban civilization, even the neighbors who have been with each other for the longest time are just “gentlemen’s friends” who smile and nod when they meet, but every time I go up and down the stairs, I can always open the door of their house through the door. A glimpse of some “life in other people’s homes” through the door.
   This family consists of young and old, and their lives are not rich—every time they go up and down the stairs, they can see the living room with few furniture in the door, which is emptiness that cannot be covered by the polished floor—the dining table is folded It’s nice to lean against the wall, and the colorful children’s toys piled up like a hill in the corner of the living room.
   Every time I see this scene, some subtle feelings always flash in my heart.
   When I was young, my feelings about my family should be summed up in two points: busy and poor. Parents are busy working all year round, and like to use “the family is very poor” to teach children to know how to save and work hard. Housework is often neglected, and some of the more difficult tasks for the children are left to the mother, and the rest are shared among the children. Half-year-old naughty children can’t really do the housework well, and they often start to get impatient when they are half done, and their hearts fly to farther places. Over time, many items are randomly placed everywhere in the home, and some items that are not used frequently are like wearing an “invisibility cloak”, automatically disappearing from the sight of family members, and only showing up when needed.
   The parents came home after a tiring day, still angry in their hearts, watching a few children who were at the age of Shangfang Jiewa jumping up and down, the mood became even more irritable. As a result, conversations at the dinner table often turn into serious “leadership lectures” and even criticism. For us, the warm dining table atmosphere is a distant life in textbooks, texts, and other children’s mouths.
   As for things that are purely for children to play with, there are even fewer. Parents are out-and-out pragmatists. Even if children want to buy books, they have to ask again and again about the relationship between the books they buy and learning; toys that are purely entertainment are low-level and naive, not only unworthy of people spending hard-earned money to buy, It will also cause unnecessary burden on housework.
   Thus, the initial appearance of my home was formed in this way: items were randomly placed in various places, some of which had not been used for a long time and had gradually been covered with dust, and the things belonging to children were no different from those of adults, books, books, etc. Clothes, some daily necessities, reveal a serious atmosphere, but also exude a contradictory carelessness towards life.
   In retrospect, that casual indifference to life may have come from the fact that our parents didn’t really consider it our home—we moved several times due to work. For them, it might just be a place to stay.
   But at that time, and many times now, I couldn’t help but blame poverty and busyness for all this.
   I remember once I went shopping with my mother in a night market that was prosperous in the early years and has long since declined. When we walked to an old clothing store, there was an “ancient” atmosphere: all kinds of men’s clothing could not be seen The styles are densely stacked on the clothes rail, and only the fabric has a cheap and bright luster; the styles hanging on the wall are clear at a glance, but the exaggerated prints are nailed to every corner of the clothes one by one from left to right like patches; The white light of the tone fell miserably, and it dealt a heavy blow to the already depleted desire to buy. The owner of the store is a woman, who is sitting on the counter and watching short videos boredly. Even if a customer comes, she can’t be aroused. In another corner of the shop, there is a common desk in primary and secondary schools—an imitation wood-grain glued-layer table board and a painted iron table frame—a little boy who is also crooked is leaning over the desk to do his homework. Behind him, there are still piles of dense cardboard boxes and old elementary school textbooks, which must be accumulated waste products to be sold.
   A sense of long-standing familiarity made me feel dazed for a while, as if it still smelled like dust. But I have not set foot in this declining commercial street for nearly ten years, and what I have experienced in my life has nothing to do with clothing sales. I was a little confused until those old textbooks with curled edges waiting to be recycled coincided with every recycled elementary school textbook I could remember.
   It turns out that what I am familiar with is this feeling: I regard the present moment as a temporary stay only as a last resort, so I show a careless and careless laziness towards life.
   And what my neighbor brought me was another kind of subversion: not rich, but well-organized, especially the care for children that was inadvertently revealed by the children’s toys like a hill, revealing the meticulousness and warmth of life everywhere. .
   Occasionally, I take pictures on the street. Afterwards, I often find that what touches me are some scenes of “wild growth”: morning glory vines entangled with dusty cement mixer trucks that have not been used for a long time; cleaning tools and careless people are randomly placed on the balcony of old residential buildings at night. Wet clothes hanging on the ground, but a green plant with teeth and claws hangs down long branches; a discarded full-length mirror is broken on the ground, and the mirror reflects the blue sky and overgrown weeds in summer; Next to the car full of fruits is a bright red plastic chair, on which the old man who keeps the stall sits, and behind these are wide six-lane vehicles and hurried passers-by… everything is full of
   people I am fascinated by the traces of the past, seemingly desolate and dilapidated but full of vitality.
   As I know more and more people, and the life I have seen has become richer, I have long understood that laziness in life is not always “bundled” with poverty and busyness. The “family poverty” that our parents told us when we were young “Teaching” is more just to let children understand the hard work of parents. And our family has long changed from the previous state of running around: the temper of the parents is more gentle than before; There are different kinds of roses, and I can smell the subtle difference in the fragrance of each rose; the living room is always lit with warm yellow lights, and there is a full set of tea sets that my father likes, and the smart home that my brother likes… everything is thriving, warm and meticulous.
   But the obsession didn’t go away.
   From time to time, the open door of the neighbor’s house entered my mind.
   Inside the door is another hidden world: just like the inexpensive but brilliant primroses blooming at the door of the old house, the wormwood hanging at the door of the Dragon Boat Festival of people living a hard life, revealing the enviable busyness and hardship There is also a gentle quality that cannot be eliminated.
   Perhaps the so-called “beauty that touches the soul” is just digging and repeating everything in life that has not had time to chew through at the beginning, but leaves obvious traces? Or am I simply envious of the kind of caring and tenderness that can’t go back?
   It is said that people with childhood shortcomings tend to have excessive self-compensation in adulthood: a child who is strictly controlled by snacks will often buy snacks excessively after being able to control money freely; people who lack love always have to prove that they are worthy of being loved ; a man who had a down-and-out childhood may turn out to be a miser. Major events in childhood always affect our choices in ways we know or don’t know. But everything that happened cannot be repeated, and the missed growth has been missed forever. Only the shortcomings remain in my heart, waiting for the long digestion and understanding in the future.
   When I used my current self to replace my parents back then time and time again, and really talked to them in the past in my heart as an adult, those hurtful experiences no longer aroused my response to a certain extent. I have long stopped treating my parents as almighty gods, thinking that they should provide their children with wholehearted love and care without making any mistakes. But certain episodes still flash back in my mind at certain times.
   Maybe when I look at the half-open door of my neighbor’s house again and again, what I hope most is that one of them will push the door open, come to me, and tell me about their life, so that I know, all that is just my beautiful imagination. Then, those confusions, regrets, and complaints that occurred during the growth process can all have a suitable frame of reference and be reasonably explained and settled.
   To this day, even though the relationship between my parents and me has made great progress, the pattern of getting along with me inherited from my childhood is still affecting me, and it even affects my views on the relationship between people: children’s likes and dislikes, worries They are all trivial fights, and the overly lively character should be classified as bad, and it seems to be full of disregard for the hard work of the parents, which should be corrected. After realizing this, we no longer tell our parents about any little things in life, whether it is joy or troubles encountered in the process of growing up. Parents are used to being serious, and they know little about their children. Even if they occasionally get interested and want to talk to their children, they can’t find anything to talk about, so they have to sacrifice their studies, work, and marriage. The conversation turned into serious preaching, which further aroused the child’s tension and desire to escape.
   The closer you get, the less you can express yourself correctly and honestly, and the wrong expressions led by mutual accusations are “unimpeded”. This vicious circle of unhealthy relationships still retains its great effectiveness today. But I still want to see the real feelings for each other hidden under the seemingly bad surface, and what I’m still learning is to find a natural and unobtrusive way to express everything correctly.

error: Content is protected !!