Marital strife. The illness and death of my mother. The drug abuse and addiction of a loved one. The uncertainties of grad school and a new career. Financial stress. Infertility. Miscarriage.
My life looks nothing like the life I thought I would have. I’m 33, twice divorced. I am staying with my cat in a home owned by my parents. I don’t have a couch, or a television. I don’t have a garden. I don’t have a husband. I don’t have a baby.
The past six years may have taken away my dreams, my home, the woman who was my best friend. But in all that I have let go, I have cultivated the gift of personal truth.
This may not be the life I planned on, the life that was expected of me. But it is mine, a tender seedling nourished by solitude and the relentless beating of my heart. I feed my reborn life with crimson blood, honoring my truth by making it my own. I travel. I plunge into the wilderness. I take big bites of the foods I love. I listen to great songs twice, and then I listen again, but only if I feel like it.
Are finer things beyond the horizon? I don’t know. It is by some strange grace that I can I open up my eyes and appreciate that today, despite grief and uncertainty, is actually pretty wonderful. I’m healthy, with strong legs that carry me to mountain peaks and canyon depths. Legs that stroll the banks of sacred waters and skip along Manhattan sidewalks. Perhaps as months and years pass, the seedling of my life will transform into a wizened old oak tree, all craggy and leafy and deeply rooted. But at this point, there is too much uncertainty. I don’t know the direction my branches will ultimately point. But the missteps, the pain and the loss of the preceeding years have cultivated a new start, an opportunity to discover what to do with this one wild and precious life. I know this much is clear–
I am the flurry of beating wings at takeoff.
I am the unfinished symphony.
I am the unexpected breeze that lifts your skirt.
I am free.