Posted on | August 28, 2011 | 13 Comments
Things move fast around here: time, toddler feet, swirls of emotion. And I am running, always running, to stay ahead… of something. I have to be one step ahead of J, one step ahead of my boss, one step ahead of the collections agents.
But I can’t seem to ever get even a half step ahead of my thoughts.
This weekend, as we always do, J and I kept busy to ward off the flood. We went for a walk around the neighborhood and then finished pulling ivy from the back yard. We shopped, and cooked, and cleaned and played. We watched movies and colored and took naps. Somewhere amidst all the madness in my head, I decided it was a good idea to clear a spot in the back corner of our yard for a DIY paver patio… and once the idea is there, it’s hard to shake it. I look out my back window now and sketch the chair and fountain or birdbath that may one day sit there in the corner. I draw myself into the chair, sipping a tall glass of lemonade while J plays in the spaces around me.
There is always only the one chair.
Somehow the thought of being alone doesn’t frighten me the way I thought it would. When I dip my toes in the idea of it, I find it’s almost warm, tepid enough to bathe in or to soak my tired feet. I have spent almost all of my time running from what is there, from what is real and true for me in this moment. I’ve been afraid to let my feet rest, to let the wave of whatever this is catch up to me… I’ve been so afraid that it would drown me whole, seeping into my pores and leaving me water logged forever.
But when I sketch that back patio, there is always only one chair.
There is no empty space beside it where another chair should be. There is no ache in my heart when I see myself there, book in hand, laughing with J. It doesn’t reduce me to tears or violent shakes. It doesn’t make me want to kick my feet and scream that life is not fair… even though life, as you know, is totally not fair.
It just feels right. It feels true. It feels like I am accepting the life that is around me. We are building a life here, J and I, and it is a good life. It is not the life I thought I would have or the life I wanted to have, but it is the life that I have.
It is mine.
It is ours.
If I am going to enjoy even the briefest moment of it, I have to stop running so far ahead. I have to stop running. I have to just stop.
It’s time to pour a glass of lemonade, pad my way out to the imaginary adirondack in my mind, and enjoy the moments that THIS life has to offer me. Because this is the life that I have. This is the only life that I will ever have.
And it’s time to stop running from it.