Inspired by Heather King and her awesome Just Write movement..
All night long, we heard the wind. The wind here wasn’t taking lives, uplifting homes breaking apart families and stealing security, it was just blowing dust, sweeping the desert floor of dried branches, cleaning house. And when the wind whipped the loudest, Zoe called for me, over and over and so I would soothe her back to sleep and then stumble again back to my own bed, the comfort of my pillow and the warmth of my husband.
It is spring in the desert, a few days almost summer like. My favorite time of year, the way it is cool in the morning and the desert is blooming. I like to plant, and nest and bake and celebrate it’s new beginning, this short lived season before the Arizona heat takes over and we hide from the strength of the sun on long summer days. This spring I turned 46 and could feel for the first time, getting closer to 50. I feel like I am wiser, now. In small ways, like the way I wanted Nike athletic shoes for my birthday, to wear almost all the time, the way I shop at Sprouts and spend so much time chopping vegetables and herbs, trying to preserve what comes from my garden, my good health.
The way I worry is wiser now too, I know for instance that I have four years now to prepare my oldest to find her way in the world, cultivate her talents, and know herself fully, to manage her health issues and that clock is ticking, always present, in a calm and steady way.
I know for certain that when Zoe goes under anesthesia soon she will remember this time, the way the mask feels on her face before she is forced to sleep. That soon we will know more about how her future looks, and that no matter what there will be love and family and security and home to return to, where we replenish and restore before going back out to do it all over again. Home is our place to celebrate family, favorite things, it is a safe place to cry, it is our sanctuary. A place where my husband tends his roses and shares his dreams, it is a place to feel fear and then push it away.
I know I am wiser for writing my words, and that by reading them to an audience and speaking them to a room full of people, I will even grow stronger, yet still I am young enough to be nervous about all of it, how I will sound, what others will think and how I will look, ..the fears of the young that stay with me still.
I am wiser because I know the importance of kindness. I live it each day, sometimes weary from wind filled nights and kids that still need me, it is that soft voice, unexpected touch or helpful person who is just kind -that helps me carry on, that makes me smile and gives me strength. Kindness is something I once knew nothing about, in my youth, kindness now, is something I crave.