Life feels so utterly calm in the wake of the chaotic, mess of a world around us. I feel, for the first time in a very long time, peacefully content. I feel at ease- with myself, with my immediate surroundings, with the days as they come and as they go. Recently, I took a few small, promising personal steps toward healing and self preservation by visiting a therapist and doctor to work through some of the sharp things that creep around my edges: the anxiety, the sadness, the anger. And since I’ve faced those difficulties head on, I feel emboldened. I feel strong. Physically, mentally, emotionally.
I’m sitting in the dim of my kitchen, glass of pinot noir at hand, dead flower petals and strings of ear buds scattered about my desk as I catch glimpses of darkening grey through the window. This shade of slate won’t seem to let up, though we were teased with a few days of shimmery sunshine and afternoons filled with the fluff of cherry blossoms.
Driving through the sunlit, endearingly gritty streets of Tacoma yesterday evening, I chat with my friend Ben after what felt like a very long, very sad day. We were both hurting for different reasons. Me because of one of the many little deaths out of which life always returns, and he because of the ugliness he had encountered that day with his students.
Sometimes in a moment alone after a thread of days spent around people for extended periods of time I’ll feel a very distinct feeling of hollowness. For sanity, I require time to just be quiet and still- maybe scrolling through websites, paging through a book, or staring out the window. Although necessary and mostly tenderly enjoyable, there’s a barrenness to the space around me when instead of clattering around in the kitchen or chatter from across the room I hear only the mechanic purr of the heater and cruel tick of the clock.
This Saturday we finally celebrated my mother’s fabulous marriage at a bridal shower that was beyond special. A bit belated, but perfect regardless.
This last week I got to spend time with my sister, Hilary, and my brother in law, Ron at their home and where I like to call one of my “happy places”. The places where I feel at ease, where stress’s chilling fingers find it difficult to find a full grasp, and where I feel unconditional love.
Well kids, it’s been one week since my mom took off on a plane back to Washington and guess what? I am still alive! I am well(ish)! I am eating, drinking, and making merry! As we dropped her off at the airport, it felt like it would be ages before that would be a possibility or that life would fall back into a natural rhythm for quite some time. Although I do feel lethargic, without much motivation to go to the gym or out to do much socializing other than under the comforting roof of my favorite restaurant run by some of my favorite people- I know I have to push through to this next week and get back into action full force, bright eyed and bushy tailed.
It won’t be until 10:10 today that my dad died four years ago. I honestly and embarrassingly can’t remember whether it was morning or night, the fluorescent hospital lights and agitated sleep on hard, angled chairs warped time and reality.