It took me longer to find you yesterday than I planned. It was my first trip out of town by myself in a significantly long time and I admit that I got lost a couple of times. I was anxious about what I would say and how I would feel once I found you. My detours were a suiting accompaniment to my thoughts as I traveled. The long winding country roads hosted incredible landscapes of trees bursting with the full spectrum of fall. My mind took in the beauty of it all while I wondered – would it feel awkward? would it seem real? was I doing the right thing by finding you?
During our time apart I’ve learned more about you than I ever knew I could understand. Some of what I’ve learned feels almost tragic while other revelations and “keys” to the lock boxes of answers have been almost therapeutic in their clarity. One thing has become abundantly clear however – you loved me and you never stopped loving me the best you could. I can only hope you’ve been able to find an understanding of how much I loved you too…the best I could. Imperfect love from a damaged woman loving the best that she can is fierce in so many ways; especially when the woman heals in a way that redeems her. I hope you’ll be able to tell I have been redeemed in so many beautiful ways since I last saw you. I hope you have found your own redemption and that we can find a way to love each other well while being in two different places. Is this something we can do? Am I ready? Will I find you?
I should have known my practiced calm reserve would disintegrate as soon as I found you. The memories, the pain and all of the regret surged back into me and settled familiarly into the grooves of my mind and my soul. I’m sorry I cried so much and forgot so many of the things I wanted to say. I wish I could have asked all of my questions instead of just crying “Why? Why?” And there were so many things to tell you but “I love you” and “I’m sorry” were the only thoughts I could manage to articulate while I was there with you. Maybe it is the memory of the last time we spoke or maybe it was just the contrast between the beautiful day and the anguish of finding you so silent, but I unraveled. I know that it’s always upset you when I fall apart like I do and I wish I could have held it together better for you.
Even though you may not have been able to tell yesterday, I am healing. I’ll be back and I hope that each time I visit I can be a little stronger and less emotional. As usual I did all of the talking yesterday and filled the uncomfortable spaces with blubbering desperate attempts to distract my myself from your deafening silence. Maybe during my next visit I’ll manage to quiet my mind and my own voice long enough to listen. Even if I just listen to the birds sing, the cattle calling from the pasture and the wind rustling the fir trees and leaves around us, I look forward to sharing that silence with you.
I have been looking for you for most of my life and I’ve found and lost you many times. And as I pulled the weeds away from the last place I’ll ever find you and placed the red roses next to you, I prayed you are finally happy. You deserve to be happy, even if it isn’t here with me. And today I pray that maybe, just maybe, if I wait quietly and settle down on my next visit like you’ve always asked me to do, you’ll speak to me and let me find peace in your words once again. You are missing from me.
So how does one convince herself to just get over it, start typing and get back to writing after months of self doubt, half finished blog posts and a serious case of the meh’s? I don’t have the answer to that question and I have no idea if this blog post will actually be published or if it will languish in the graveyard of unpublished good intentions with the other two or three dozen attempts I’ve made over the past couple of years. What I do know, however, is that I no longer care if I publish something, if it gets read and shared or if I finally write that best seller so that my sister and I can live in a really awesome compound with enough space to accommodate all of our children, our extended families and our besties…and gardens and goats and sh*t. And chickens. Oh my god yes…I need chickens again in order to be whole. To accomplish my sister-chickens-compound dream a little faster than my current speed of nada, I would like to write that best seller but I can’t worry about that at the moment. Instead I need to just worry about being delightful and being delightful is a lot harder when I’m not writing. So I’m chickenless but I’m writing, so still f-ing delightful.
I just don’t have a wholesome essay of self discovery inside of me anymore. No more words of wisdom or strained reiterated and tired old epiphanies and triumphs. I’m pretty sure at this point in my life I’m as wise and mature as I’m ever going to get and, quite honestly, I’m okay with it. I laugh at inappropriate moments, forget my own address, have full conversations with inanimate objects and often go days without brushing my hair because “I just can’t even…” If I were 20 years older I’d be called eccentric. If I were 20 years younger I’d probably be institutionalized. Instead I’m stuck in midlife without the option of being eccentric yet and so far I’ve managed to avoid being locked up, so I’m left to wander the tiny little itty bitty of portion of earth I call home while simply being…strange. It’s time for me to simply accept myself as exactly who I am and I am strange. Strange, but still f-ing delightful.
Maybe it’s the state of humanity as a whole that is strange. Sometimes I wonder if I’m actually exceptionally sane and its the rest of the world that has lost all sense of reason and appropriate conduct. Consider my tendencies to never leave my home, fear computers, avoid humans, forget where I’m going or what I’m doing at any given moment and (my personal favorite) to scream and throw things at televisions broadcasting news reports or commercials. Maybe these “oddities” are actually a reflection of my imperfect yet upright stability in a topsy turvy world. I like the idea that I might actually be more right than wrong. Imperfect and somewhat flighty and unpredictably volatile, but still f-ing delightful.
As I’ve continually severed my social media connections, eschewed technology and avoided any and all news outlets, I’ve found that being delightful is much easier than it was when I was intertwined with the people and events around the world. I’m intentionally oblivious and uninformed about the world around me and, I’ve discovered, I’m much happier this way. Perhaps it’s true – the best way to see change is to be the change you want to see. I want people to stop being so angry, bitter, scared and hateful. I want a world in which free thinking is encouraged, all lives are considered precious, self actualization is sought and obtained without fiscal or legal barriers and peace is a natural byproduct of a healthy collective of respect, love and the pursuit of happiness for all. Maybe I’m a dreamer, but I wish and pray for a world that is simply f-ing delightful.