My blonde hair was in a high ponytail, wisps falling from the lake breeze. My blue eyes hid my feelings behind cheap sunglasses. The water was calm, my toes dipped in off the edge of the dock. I had a cold beer next to me and a pup gazing sleepily at me with his head on my lap. I smiled as he waved from a jet ski, acting ridiculous to make me laugh...
I looked out over that perfect view and did the only thing I could. I prayed.
I talked to God. I apologized for not trying for so very long. I thanked Him for such a happy, strange, beautiful moment. I asked Him why I have so much doubt. Why I have such a hard time believing in Him, even when I know a scene like the one I was sitting in could only be painted by a higher power. I asked Him why no matter how hard I try, I can't get it together. I asked him why I'm so broken. I thanked Him for listening even though I'm so far away from Him right now.
I wish I could say I felt peace after that. I didn't. And that's okay. Like I've said before, God and I have been on the outs. That road of my life, like so very many others, is going to be a slow, painful, and windy one.
I have to walk all these roads by myself. And that's where I am right now...I'm alone. I don't say that in a bad way. I say it honestly.
In 3 days, I lose my job. My nanny family, whom I love dearly, is moving away. They've been my stability for a long time, and now they're moving forward.
I have a broken heart, we all know that. And for the first time, I don't have a "fall back guy." The one who helps you forget about the one you love. I've deleted those numbers from my phone. It's just me and the pain this time.
My friends are all moving forward as well. Boyfriends, moves, weddings, babies. They love me, but they've got big things going on, great things. They're here for me, but I'm in a very different place than them. And let's be honest, sometimes being around the sad girl can get a little draining.
It's just me. Me and a lot of pain. Me and a lot of mistakes. Me not being able to fix things right now. Me having no choice BUT to stand my ground and fix things right now. From the inside out.
I tend to do the opposite. If I can just run farther or lift heavier, the rest will fall into place. That didn't work this time. All it did was get me shin splints and plantar fasciitis and a good chance of not being able to run an entire marathon in two months.
Or if I can just run away somewhere for a few days, I'll get a fresh perspective. We all saw how that worked out.
Everything in my life is yelling at me to stop and figure it out. Stand still and listen. It's not whispers anymore. It's rock bottom yells.
I know I'm not alone in this. I know other people are in a place where the yells are too loud, and they're wishing they had listened to the whispers.
It's time to figure it out.
When I was driving home from Wisconsin last week there was a long stretch of empty road and green grass. That was it. Nothing else.
And one, tall, gorgeous, lonely yellow wildflower.
It was beautiful. Almost a sunflower but not quite. And it stood it's ground, roots deeply planted while cars and trucks whipped by.
The wind tried to blow it down, but it stood anyways.
I doubt anyone else noticed it. People were driving so fast. I noticed, though.
I didn't stop and take a picture, and I didn't stop to pick it from it's spot. I just took a moment and said to myself, "never, ever forget this. This means something."
And it does.
I've had a lot more bad than good this year. A lot of it was my own doing. And I'm terrified about what's going to happen next.
I don't know how I'm going to do it. I don't know where I'm going to work, or when I'm going to wake up and not be so sad, or what it even means to begin to fix the mess I'm in.
I don't know if I will continue to pray, or if I will try to run farther, or if I will just become the crazy writer who locks herself in a room and writes her life away.
But I know I'm going to figure it out.
Because sometimes it takes being alone on the side of the road, with the world whipping past, to realize your own strength.
And sometimes it means continuing down that road, by yourself, to get to where you're meant to be.
I'm going to figure it out.
And I promise you will, too.
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