Thursday, April 19, 2012
walking the fine line
tonight, i lean up against the kitchen sink and glance out my large window to the backyard i'm so thankful to have. it's cluttered with lawn furniture and chewed dog toys. the grass is long, and the weeds abundant. i have plants from last year holding firm and dead in my pots. the deck is green and needs cleaning. the kids have dug holes in all my flower beds looking for worms.
i flinch. i wonder when we can clean it up. surely, we need the sun and a good 12 hour day to get it in tip top summer shape.
i rest the weight of my body on the counter and close my eyes. a decision weighs heavy on my mind. so heavy, i woke up in a panic the night before and tore something in my back as the muscles fought to protect my spine from the worry that surrounds it. i take a huge gulp of water at the chiropractors request. 'lots of water, rest, and just try to take it easy'.
'ok' i mutter. knowing only the water is within my control. so i drink feverishly.
i close my eyes as the kids beg for a snack, and for dinner, 'mom, do you know where my book is?' i sigh. because i don't. and it reminds me that the 'read-a-thon' paperwork was due. and i realize i have no idea where it is.
i tip my head back and it hurts. it tip it forward and it hurts more. i wonder what it's like not to have chronic neck and back pain.
i open my eyes and focus on a giant tub of 'johnsons caramel corn'. it's a family favorite from the jersey shore sent as an easter gift from sean's parents. i smile. i focus on a week there in july where this rest and relaxation my chiropractor speaks of may come true. i can do this.
ian grabs my leg and whines, 'where's daddy, i want daddy' and i muster the words i say so frequently these days, 'he's working late, honey'. i look down at his perfect little face, marred imperfect with a scar over his right eye from a biking accident. he's now spotted with tiny freckles across his nose and he's filthy. from digging for worms i'm sure of.
i wonder where alex is and i feel sad for our conversation this morning. where she told me she is sad in her heart that she's the first to daycare and the last to leave. 'why mom, do you have the longest work ever?'
i finally pull myself away from the kitchen counter and walk to the dining room where a pile of papers a foot high waits for me. i search for the read-a-thon packet and find only bills, and kindergarten enrollment papers, and due dates. i pull out all the magazines and junk mail and set it aside. the 'to do' papers are now half the size. i breath a sigh of relief, this was productive.
i look around the house, i'm thankful to have and see clutter. everywhere. a house i cleaned over the weekend now looks like a tornado came through and turned everything on it's side.
i make a mental note to de-clutter, and drive a car full to the goodwill.
i hear the dog scurry to the garage door, whining and whimpering in gladness. could it be? is he home? no, he said after bedtime.
and sure enough. it's sean, he's here.
now that my backup has arrived, i pull myself from the table and walk to the cabinet that holds our many vitamins and pain medicines and find a bottle of muscle relaxers. like it's gold, i fumble the lid off and wash one down. more productivity, i'm drinking water. clean, fresh water. i'm thankful again.
in one moment, life can seem so imperfect. so hard, and impossible. and in the next, you feel so overwhelmed with gratitude and appreciation for all you have. i wonder, is this the journey? coming to terms with the good and the bad and finding that balance? teetering on the tightrope of life, swaying left and swaying right and trying to find that middle sweet spot. the spot where you stop and breath and notice the small imperfect freckles on your perfect 4 year old's nose?