It felt like it came out of nowhere. I had been struggling to find it for years, trying to reach this place, arrive at this moment. But I wasn’t expecting it – at least not then.
I had been valiantly searching for the little kernels. The perfect memories caught in time, hanging there waiting for me. Even in those rare moments when I could catch one, I could never make it feel real. As a result, I thought I was going to be formalizing my list of bullet points. Writing them out. Expanding the details. Creating the book that would tell the poor-me story.
Instead, there we sat. In the moment. Side by side. Eyes forward. Shoulders just slightly grazing each other as we shifted to find comfort on the long wooden pews. A warm summer breeze blowing through, stirring up the musty smells of the countless souls who had been here before. Listening to the singing. Young voices. Full of optimism and hope. Naive.
“Every long journey is made of small steps. Is made of the courage, the feeling you get. You know it’s been waiting and waiting for you. The journey’s the only thing you want to do…Every long journey, what drives you to go, it’s half what you know and it’s half what you don’t…”
I love that song but I found I could only silently mouth the words. There was something about this moment. I knew if I sang too loud I would start to cry. Trying to control my emotions, I took a deep breath in and once again felt her shoulder brush mine. I glanced over cautiously from the corner of my eye and, as I saw her tears freely flowing, realized those lyrics held the weight of a lifetime for both of us.
Then, out of nowhere, it came. Suddenly, it was so obvious. Why had I made it so hard?
It wasn’t weight. That was the wrong word, the wrong feeling. It was beauty. It was pain. It was life. It was this moment. This was it. The kernel. Finally, it felt real.
In that small moment, I felt the burden of forty-seven years lifting from me. I found faith in the process of life.
I was not meant to go back. I was meant to stand in this moment and step forward. I could not recreate, but I had always possessed the power to create. I just hadn’t wanted it. I had wanted someone else to do it for me. Plus, I had the balance all wrong. I thought I was supposed to make the past equal the present. It never will.
I said a silent thank you to the journey that had brought me here.
I took a first small step onto the path that I had worked so hard to find.
I leaned in closer, allowing my shoulder to rest on hers.
This was originally posted on my blog - www.animperfectheart.com