Field Guide to Now by Christina Rosalie
“This is what I know: Remarkable things emerge from the smallest, most ordinary circumstances – from taking note and then taking action.”
A field guide to now is one of my favorite books. Christina’s writings are like poetry, and her observations of the world around her, nature, the seasons and her life, delicate and raw at the same time.
I recognize myself in her, she experiences life, nature, deeply, and she wants to be fully there to feel it with all of her soul, to not miss a moment or take it for granted. At the same time she struggles with the everyday, mundane challenges that life brings; mess to clean up, frequent interruptions being the mother of two young boys, worries about money, the future, while her heart is urging her to find silence, solitude, to reflect, and to bring out what lives deep down inside and wants to be born.
Christina is determined to create her dream life, to answer the call of her heart. And by sharing her journey with us, through her writings, her illustrations and her insights, she inspires and motivates us to do the same.
“ When I woke this morning I had a headache and I wanted to cry, but now the kitchen window is open just a little and the air rushing in is sweet with rain and new leaves and the first blossoms, and if joy had a scent it would be this. Rain-drenched, fragrant and stirring with birdsong.”
Christina lives with her 3 year old son and husband in an old farmhouse in the countryside. They have trouble making ends meet , his job as a day trader is not bringing much income anymore and it puts a strain on their relationship. Her heart is drawn to writing and painting, but she still has her day job as a teacher, and being a mother takes up most of her time and attention, leaving her often frustrated and yearning for time and space to create. Then she becomes unexpectedly and against all odds pregnant of her second son and she has to throw all her expectations of what the future will look like out of the window, and focus on welcoming this new situation. We follow her as she says yes to life, to her bigger family, but also finds time, or maybe sooner moments, to answer the call of her heart in between everything else that is happening. As we follow her story, her life’s moments, and her musings, she shares real nuggets of wisdom.
“ I want you to know that this is the way things almost always begin: innocuous and small; a note jotted down on a napkin, a phrase that circles in your head for days, a feeling you cannot ignore. This is when you must pay attention. This is when you must do whatever you can to begin. Let this book be an invitation. Leap with arms flung wide toward the heart of your life. ”
We follow Christina and see how life happens, how ideas and plans move forward even under the most unlikely circumstances. The perfect moment is almost never there, but that’s not what you need to make things happen. Christina urges us to enjoy and deeply experience each moment, be fully there, and seize those small opportunities that come round every day to create, to move forward, to take those little steps that will slowly but surely get you where you want to be.
“Obstacles are mostly things we create in our minds, and if what you long for is joy and abundance, then let it be measured by how far you can bend, and how gracefully you can move around the hurdles…
… Some days it takes everything I have to simply move forward without leaving anything behind: coffee mugs on the roof of my car, appointments, tenderness. Other days, more is possible. What I am trying to say is this: It’s easy to look at what is achievable in a single day and always come up short. But it is just as easy to underestimate what you can accomplish in a year.”
With her beautiful book Christina reminds us that now is the moment things are happening: now is where the beauty is found, now is the moment to pay attention, now is the moment to take action, to take that first step, and to continue on that journey of creating your heart-shaped life.