Travel

Ever hit one of those bumps in the road and think, “This … this is the one that’s gonna break my axle.”

But it doesn’t. Does it?

That’s the funny thing about bumps because when you’re up and on ’em, you’d swear you’re never going over and down the other side. No way. This is the worst one. Ever.

But it isn’t. Is it?

DSC_0810 (3)

Of course we all hope for clear skies and calm seas, but the truth is the ride’s never that easy. Boats will rock and the road will heave and one way or the other, we’ll all get where we’re going.

Won’t we?

Sunrise isn’t quite as spectacular without a few clouds sharing the horizon, but I know of no one who wishes for more clouds, beautiful as they color that sky at dawn. And sitting here on the bottom end of a bump, I’m as certain as I could possibly be that I’d be just fine without another one.

Thank you very much.

But then I look back. And ahead. And back again. I see that last bump and others, higher even, and I think, “Wow … wouldja look at that … I survived.”

Didn’t I?

It’s important to take a minute and see how far we’ve come. Sure. There’s more road to travel – thankfully – and I’m sure there’s bumps up ahead I can’t see yet. Curves. Potholes. Maybe even a stall or a crash. But that’s okay. We’ve got insurance.

It’s called faith.

 

 

in Just spring

DSC_0092 (2)

in Just-

spring   

Wouldn’t it be cool if fairy godmothers were a thing?

One quick wave of the magic wand and everything’s fairy-tale beautiful and happily-ever-after.

Guess what? Spring is the thing. Have you been outside? Someone’s been out there wand-waving,  for sure.

It’s spring and all the world stands on tippy-toes – awake with possibility!

when the world is mud-
luscious         the little
lame balloonman
whistles          far          and wee

 

Haul out the marbles, jacks, and jump ropes. Suddenly there’s time for chalk doodles in the driveway and Frisbees fly across college campuses.  The boys of summer are back in the ballpark and where’s my bike?

and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it’s
spring
One more thing … color’s back in town! Some sort of fairy magic blues the sky and greens each branch. Daffodils and forsythia yellow rock walls by the side of the road and any day now, you can expect the lilacs to show up smelling all purple pretty and inspire the bees out of hiding.

DSC_0141 (2)

when the world is puddle-wonderful

There’s an invitation to a beach party just a hop, skip, and jump away so maybe it’s best to start feeling good now so we’re ready when summer comes.

the queer
old balloonman whistles
far          and             wee
and bettyandisbel come dancing

from hop-scotch and jump-rope and

In New England, we know spring’s got its own agenda. Snow today, rain tomorrow, and the forecast calls for sun in the seventies next week. And that’s part of the magic. Because dreams don’t come true all at once and even a fairy godmother’s magic is only good until midnight.

So it’s important to get outside and live it up on our own because …

it’s
spring
and

         the

                goat-footed

balloonMan          whistles

far
and
wee
DSC_0281 (4)
Many thanks to e e cummings for spring inspiration. Weeeeeee!

 

On Courage

DSC_0380 (2)

Anyone else been feeling a little powerless lately?

If I’m honest, I feel at least a little powerless every day, most often during World News Tonight, but sometimes in the morning on my way to work or during the middle of the night’s tosses and turns. My inability to solve anything, for me or anyone else apparently seems to elbow me most at the top and bottom of a day.

Intellectually, I understand world events, for example, are beyond my control, but what’s to become of us after that basic recognition? What we’re left with is a whole frightening range of feelings to live with and none of them pleasant. No resolution. No control. No hope of changing what feels so far and away out of our reach.

Days tick into nights, weeks pass, and we tuck all those feelings away.  And we move on. Because we must. We may feel a little more frightened or a little less certain, but there’s work to be done and bills to be paid and dinner to make. We live our lives, dream our dreams, and hope for the best.

Until whatever happens next – and these days whatever’s next seems to arrive within days of the last- stirring up panic all over again.

And we feel powerless.

So much in our personal lives makes us feel powerless too. I told a friend recently that some experience, email, event, news, or decision shakes my head in disbelief almost daily. In the past few months, I’ve grieved with a mother who lost her son to a drug overdose, listened to a woman I’ve known for years tell me she has breast cancer, and mourned the death of three 21-year-old men in a car accident.

And after an especially challenging week, what I’ve discovered about myself is my tendency to gather all of these things – and many more heavies – into some sort of metaphorical backpack and shoulder the weight of them day after day. It’s been so hard and hopeless to carry.

Until this Friday morning when I finally and unexpectedly reached some sort of empowering pause … and dropped it all.

I realized I have courage.  And so do you.

We’re all some shade of courageous every day of our lives.

Some days, courage comes just from putting our feet on the floor in the morning and giving the day a go – whatever it may bring.

We can’t control the choices our children make, but we’re  courageous when we parent them in the very best ways we know how.

We find courage while we wait for our loved ones to come home, and some of us bravely face the world each day with a bit of grief for those who will not.

We make up our minds to be strong, courageously and petulantly stamping our feet, and decide: no more, not me, not today.  Whatever the decision, whatever the reason behind it, it takes courage to make it once and for all.

It takes courage to talk truth to ourselves, face to face, without blinking. There’s courage sprinkled all over the words we finally speak aloud when we can no longer hold them in.

There’s courage when we challenge what’s always been with new ideas and philosophies of what should be.

We’re courageous when we try again and again and again. Today, tomorrow, and the next.

Failure be damned.

I’m courageous enough to fight for my own little corner of the world.

And so are you.

This post was inspired by a writing challenge I’m participating in with my mother. We both want to write more, so we’re taking turns offering a prompt to write about. Our first was COURAGE. If you’d like to join in, we’d love to have you. Post a link in the comments.

Dedicated to Liz: who always encourages me to be my truest self and Jim who’s been feeling a little powerless too.

Linking to Emily P. Freeman’s blog.