It creeps up on you slowly, small drips of sadness that quickly dissipate before you are forced to address them. Then the feeling is more prominent, a muddy puddle that is larger and deeper than you first thought. The irritation at these interruptions becomes a consciousness that says, “Here it comes, you know what this leads to. Time to look carefully at what is welling up and if necessary, let it wash over you.”
I always set a time limit. I tell myself this is normal, life happening as it should, and the facing of it head-on will allow me to see there is another side, a place where the puddles dry and the drip stops. An emotional pattern is like a weather pattern. If I stop and acknowledge it, I can forecast the joy that balances it out. Little things bring it on; a trip to the salon that takes me past my old home. Memories swell on the first passing. “Did I make a mistake along the way? Wasn’t that life OK?”
I pick up a high-end fashion magazine at the salon; it reminds me, in the life it depicts, of a fate that will never be mine, though once or twice I’ve been very close. On the way home, I cannot turn my head to look at the house, it has become too raw.
Finally, force-feeding myself a chicken pot pie before the nightly TV news, I break down. They end the broadcast with a story of a woman who donated her child’s heart and met the recipient. And you know what? I let myself cry. I sit back and let go for a few minutes to wash the ground clean. It is calming.
Am I on the other side yet? Probably by the time this is public, I will be riding a new high – the possibilities for happiness are endless right now. Just like the weather forecast, if you are patient and watch, the sun comes out, Spring arrives, the puddles nourish the earth and gardens appear.
But at the moment, like every other human at various points in life, I have a water hazard to address. Thanks for listening…