Explorations of mind, paths, and life

Gathering my Shoes

Posted on November 26, 2011 - Filed Under beach, fear, feelings, JP, memories, ocean, self concept, self reflect

The avoidance detrimental, really. A quiet, shifty eyed, uncertainty sitting under my skin, under the happy and work, under the smile and respites on the beach or on long drives. Some things have hit a state of hibernation in my core, and I ask myself to bring them forward, but I think I am afraid of the potential tumble backward into beliefs I have worked hard to unwind and sort out. So, in the quiet space that is my blog I coax them forward – perhaps give them a voice for just a moment – in hopes that I can return to some of the habits I was finding most healing before May; Writing, Art, Working out.

I never imagined the impact of my son’s time in the hospital last May – the fear numbed for the sake of the strength I felt I had to carry forward each day. The disappointment in ways my community of friends failed to show, and the deep gratitude for the few whose faces came forward to lend a shoulder and keep me from falling. The layers of alone that curled around me each night on the hospital couch, the deep tired that was so challenging I couldn’t hold my journal up to voice my pain and fear. The journal I abandoned; the journal I had consistently written in for almost a year, every morning, working through all that was happening in my life. I was afraid to even lend a voice to the tired and fear, certain that would leave me incapacitated. And the resentment of the system, of my struggle with Justin’s dad to provide help, of the way that those I believed would be there were not, of the little voice that is always murmuring that I will always be alone… doing the hard work alone. I want that voice to go away.

I took a long walk on a local island yesterday, with a guy I have been dating. On our return, we took a moment to sit on a bench  and gather our shoes. I leaned back into his arm, his warm sturdy body, my head resting on his shoulder, staring off into the softening light and waves. My core began to collapse in that space, wanting just to exist there for an hour, until I had my fill, until I felt somehow replenished and not so alone. He has no idea what that space felt like in my body or heart. I question if that is what I am really seeking right now, a place to feel supported, held up when I am tired. I am not sure he will do that in my life, in the emotional connected sort of way. I have not found that at all in the meandering dating I have done. To feel almost like a child, wrapped up in the space of another, peering out and knowing it is safe out there, someone important has my back. “Well, shall we get going?” he asked, reaching down for his shoes. “No, just give me two more minutes here, please.” He paused. There was no kiss on my forehead that says, “I see you.” There was no squeeze of the shoulder, or light touch of my hair. He simply leaned back, looked at his watch, and said, “we can do that.” And I wonder what he feels there. Weighted? Tired? Eager? Uncertain?  I take a breath, and resume my gaze through the wavering grasses out to the sea. I am trying to implant that feeling so i can take it with me later, when I am alone and uncertain, and need to know the feeling of being nestled in the clement shoulder of another. I am blatantly aware that I don’t know, at any moment, who I am to him, what I mean, what I feel like, but I impose the belief, for just that moment that this space is what I need.  I assign it the meaning I need, regardless of where he is.  It is only later that I realize that it feels confusing, and creates uncertainty that I am not sure I can manage with regards to his emotional reserve.

Are we all emotionally reserved? Do I ask too much? Do I create distance, by the nature of the way I am. Do I look like I don’t need deep, meaningful, consociate connection? Does my smile not bring safety, for an opening, or does it have nothing to do with me? And there is that little voice that is always murmuring that I will always be alone… doing the hard work alone. I want that little voice to go away.

Navigating life beyond work, dancing, and photography… navigating the connections, the frustrations, the questions, the uncertainty of what I am really ready for. Do I have pain beyond what I know with regards to my divorce that makes this harder? What to make of the disappointment? Am I afraid of being disappointed again? Is there something out there that matches where I am at? What am I really seeking?

On the trip out to Caladesi Island, the boat drumming up salty breezes amidst the pound of soft wakes, I watched a family of 6 children, close together, limbs and fingers tangled on the benches between parents. A mother held her second youngest, with his thumb shoved firmly, contentedly, in his mouth, while they rode out the cool breezes. As goosebumps rose on his skin, he curled deeper into her embrace, her chin resting on his sand-dusted hair. I could remember easily, holding Justin’s half naked body against mine when he was tired from a day at the beach, his head pressed into my breast, my heart calling, “Thump Thump, Love Love” under his face. I remember the sensation of skin, touching skin, and the immense joy that filled me to the brim, that I could love with ease this creature. His moppy curls and brown eyes, the inferno his little body could create against me, his giggle. I watched this mother, and could not recall a memory of being in the arms of my own mother – but somewhere in the depths of sensation I know. I could not know that peace without having had it. It was there, I am sure.

Perhaps this was a trigger for my own desire to “sink in,” to feel my skin braised by the heat of another human touch, when I spend days upon days, untouched. Perhaps that is part of my delight when I dance, converse sneakers snug on my feet. Opportunity and delight that I am held, sometimes close, in a whirlwind that leaves little room for thought. A hand on my back, different smiles, fluctuating ardor, and the invitation – “would you like to dance?” Would you like to move with me through this moment, to this beat of hearts, palpitating with the fervor of swinging feet and arms, through this song, and these touchstone smiles? And I pay close attention to the feel of different hands, to the different texture of skin, sometimes young, sometimes aged, and the smells that different dancers carry on their skin… and then I reset, and rest, eager for the next invitation to connect. I am sometimes so trusting on the floor that my eyes close and all that moves me is the music,  the waves of energy that turn me, shift me, push me out and in, and spin me again.  I get connection within the boundaries of the dance floor. And, is that the only place I will find connection – one I walk away from until next Tuesday, or Saturday? Until the next visit, or walk on the beach?

And I gather my shoes and feel the pace of  walking in the sand, sunset at my back, wonder and uncertainty riding my shoulders, clinging to me like stubborn children, tired, and that little voice …



One Response to “Gathering my Shoes”

  1. Ruby on November 27th, 2011 7:44 pm

    I love that you are beginning to write again. Reflection is a warm blanket over the soul. Thank you for being so open to your heart needs and allow us to take a pick into it.