I ordered this picture from One King’s Lane yesterday:
It captures perfectly the current state of my mind. I just want to take that curvy black line and straighten it out, but it would probably just spring back like curling ribbon. The wildness of the lines appeal to me, and the colors complement my living room. Only after I’d clicked Place Order did I wonder if it might make me nervous to look at it all the time.
My mind is a jumble of emotions, fluid, like the lines in the picture. Sorrow and elation, anxiety and contentment, remorse and satisfaction. I don’t write because it would take too long to sort everything out, and I have other tasks to complete. I don’t complete other tasks because I haven’t sorted everything out through writing.
Exactly 20 years ago today, I was in a car accident in which I broke my leg. I was living in San Antonio, working as a professional picture framer and a waitress, trying to figure out life after college. I couldn’t work while my leg was healing, and I had no car, so my mom and sister drove to San Antonio to help me pack up my post-college dreams and move back to Houston. I spent that summer thinking about what I should do next; not surprisingly, there weren’t many job opportunities for a 23-year old sociologist/picture framer/cocktail waitress who had just graduated from Trinity. By the end of the summer, I had discerned my calling to teach, so I went to graduate school, earned my Master of Education, and settled into a life of teaching, church volunteering, and spending time with family and a few close friends.
My life today could not be more different, and sometimes that awareness overwhelms me. I am happy now, but I regret taking so long to feel this way. This is what I am constantly trying to sort out in my mind.
So, I am going to write every day and try to let the words flow through me like a sieve. I need to get as close as possible to the line where my 40-is-the-new-30 life begins. I’ve analyzed the past 2 1/2 years more than is probably necessary, but I haven’t fully exorcised the demons. I am my own worst enemy. Vulnerability scares the crap out of me, but Brene Brown says being unguarded is how people learn let go of their imperfections and make choices that are consistent with who they really are, so I’ll give it a try.
When the picture arrives, I hope I will be able to look at it and appreciate the messiness and the uninhibitedness and how it pushes me to embrace openness and change. If not, perhaps I’ll consider a nice, soothing landscape.