Time has passed since my last blog post. My pounding heart has come back to a regular rhythm. It is Feb again. As I sit calm and look out at the rainy day, my mind wanders to last year at this time. I was in a whirlwind of Business and living… I thought I knew my surroundings and never dreamed that the chaos I feared would rear its ugly head and take a slash through my world. I start to feel my heart race as I realize that one year ago, I sat calm and happy and was oblivious of the crisis that was to be in my immediate future. It was March 2nd that I was thrown over the cliff in my clear plastic bubble of chaos. Placed on a path that had no bearing on the world I had known. Cast off so suddenly that there was no prep time, no way to grasp the validity of what had happened and no point of reference to gauge where I was or what would happen next. At first I just tumbled around in the capsule a wild mess. Scared, and set apart from everyone. Nothing my loved ones said could reach into that clear bubble capsule and penetrate my space. I saw only through the haze of plastic everything continuing in life; but I rolled by unnoticed. The desperation crept in as I realized that no one could reach me; they could wave, yell, run beside the bubble as it rolled, but no one could stop it or get me out. I was truly alone on this wild ride. The bubble capsule continued to roll day and night. Never stopping… just sometimes a slow roll through a flat space where out of pure exhaustion I would sit down and rest, only to get a crazy gust of wind that would push me faster again and rouse me to another dizzy day of crazy. From inside the capsule I had no control… I could sometimes press hard on the bubble and it would lean in one direction, but any little bump in the road caused it to bounce and turn. There was no rhyme or reason to the path– just crazy twists and turns. At some moments it felt as if I was being pulled by an invisible line, which at any moment may be jerked tight and cause me to catch my breath over a quick flight that landed in a hard bounce… Several times I had the wind knocked out of me when the capsule would land hard over bumps or turns, but I gained my breath again quickly as there was no time for recovery on this road of chaos.
Even though I felt out of control and like I was watching the world from a foggy plastic shell– I was not hurt physically. As the days went by I learned how to control the capsule some…. not very well, but able to use some focused energy to lean toward a somewhat consistent path. As the path widened, I one day came to a sudden fork in the road. I leaned left with all my might causing my capsule to take a quick turn and BOOM! I had run over a metal spike that punctured the capsule. As suddenly as the capsule had engulfed me it was dissolving around me. The air felt piercing and the world was loud. Sounds that I had longed to hear- seemed abrasive in this moment of sudden clarity. I walked, then ran….. then sat and cried- the ride was over, I was out. Everything felt new and overwhelming. I faced new opportunity and while excited I was also terrified. Am I strong enough…. am I good enough? The capsule had become a familiar prison that I hated at first, and now struggled not to feel small without the idea of its walls. I bolstered my courage and struck out on my new adventure. Talking to myself with words of courage and embracing the engaging words of those who loved me and were happy to see my capsule dissolved. The ones who had run beside my capsule, now walked beside me. I had lost some along the way and it was clear who was with me now. It was a new day!
As the next 6 months unfolded, it turns out that I had found myself in a new job which posed an environment similar to what I imagine a coal mine– very toxic and riddled with intense hardship testing my mental and emotional fortitude at every turn. Every time I thought I was gaining some ground, I would get reassigned to another new area to labor hard and long with no help or direction. there was much ridicule during this time by outsiders, I tried to keep my eyes fixed on the edge of the ridgeline, where the mountaintop met the sky, but it was difficult to breathe in the mine, and I often broke down in tears of despair. My hope was so shredded at the basic level, I leaned heavily on the strength of my core group to remind me that there was more outside the mine.
Then on a sunny day when I was just dredging along the best I could, I got a message that my days in the mine were over. I was shocked, but perplexed. While I was trying to decide what I would do next… I got the phone call. My application was approved for my next journey. In a matter of hours, I had been set free from the mine and moved to a new path in the valley. Good grief…. I must marvel at times the pace at which my life journey takes place! My time in the plastic capsule made me appreciate the raw air of the mine….. the drudgery and hardship of the mine made me appreciate the sweet grass of the valley, even though the dirt path is rough and basic… I am walking, breathing and taking in every sound.
So….. back to my rainy post of writing…. due to the sensitive nature of my journey, I must share through parable and protect the onlookers that may be watching. I am beyond grateful and quiet in my spirit today to share this moment of reflection with you from a resting place on my path. The message is a reminder for me: Take in the moments….. use them for what you can. Don’t dread the future or live in the past! Life must be felt at all cycles – ride the waves of the tempest, so that you can appreciate and welcome of the sunny shore.