a year ago at the mall - sunny day - blue sky - birds singing - all things well
me and my friend C
C and i were having a lovely time shopping at target - or ross - or the dollar tree - hmm those tricky little details ... when we decided that we were hungry. so she drove her car and i drove mine to the other side of the mall for burgers. i noticed that my car was a little slow .. not as peppy as it usually is. but i didn't give it much thought until i pulled into my parking spot at the burger place and ...
... noticed that my emergency brake had been on the entire time -- tight enough to make my car sluggish -- not so tight as to burn things or make a smell to alert me to the emergency brake being ON!
after thoroughly enjoying the humor of the situation and telling my friend how i had just driven with my emergency brake on, it hit me, sometimes i emotionally drive with my emergency brake on. there are days when i should really just stay put. stay parked. stay in bed and rest. but instead i get up and push and push and push . the end result is a sluggish, tired, weighed down me. and so i am giving myself - and you! - permission to have 'emergency brake' days//moments//weeks where the most important thing is to take care of me and how i'm feeling so that i can release that brake and drive well later.
two days ago - driving out of my parents' neighborhood. recent construction on the main road i was attempting to pull out onto. lots of orange cones and signs and directions. very visually overloading. crossing two lanes of oncoming traffic to make it to the median and merge with outgoing (?) or going the way i needed to go traffic.
me and snoppy (my car) - guest appearance by the nice man in the mazda, fast driver in the jeep, and punk neighborhood kid in the lime green kia.
i'm still having some stomach issues -- so needless to say i'm not feeling super fabulous. and when i'm in physical pain it's like that part of my brain grows and shrinks other 'thinking' parts of my brain. so many normal things that are usually simple become very difficult. such as making decisions. i see the mazda (driving in the lane i'm in) and the jeep (driving in the other lane) - who is ahead of the mazda - both coming my way. and i think to myself "surely i can make it across to the median" while at the same time thinking "and not only to the median but merge into the outgoing traffic lane" while at the same time thinking "is there even an outgoing lane? i can't tell!" while at the same time thinking "huh maybe i can't make it" while at the same time thinking "there sure are a lot of orange cones throwing off my driving groove"
when amidst all of these brilliant thoughts it hit me : "YOU'RE SITTING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MAZDA'S LANE SWITCHING GEARS FROM REVERSE TO DRIVE AND THE PUNK KID IN THE LIME GREEN KIA IS BEHIND YOU!!!! YOU'RE STUCK!" so so awesome.
i did what any calmly confused person would've done in my situation : smiled, looked to the mazda driver, put my hands up and said 'i'm so sorry' he then signaled that he was moving to the left lane since i was sitting in his lane, and calmly drove around me. after the jeep and mazda drove away i pushed the gas pedal down, found out quickly i was in reverse, changed to drive, and made it across the lane and a half of traffic i had left to cover and merged gracefully albeit confusingly into outgoing traffic.
and so another nugget of emotional truth from my driving experiences : sometimes we are parked / stopped / stalled in oncoming lanes of emotional shit. there will be times when the shit will signal that it's going around us (such as the nice mazda man) and we are able to smile anyway and let go of the hurt ; other times the shit will switch lanes but flip us off, leaving us feeling hurt, confused, and M-A-D, making letting go of the situation much harder ; and then there are times when the shit sees us, smiles, and hits us right upside the face making our emotional journey the hardest, because before we can let it go we have to clean it up, look at it, sort through it, and let's be real, that's just gross.
loved this more but it wouldn't load onto blog :)
SUMMARIES OF STORIES
in my journey i've experienced all three of these shit flingers. the ones that go around and i can let go quickly and easily : the ones that flip me off and leave me spinning in circles confused as to whether i'm coming or going - good or bad - broken or fixed : and the ones that smack me upside the face leaving it impossible to ignore and forcing me to examine what happened, why it hurt so much, how i can forgive and let go. (btw - this last one is the hardest - and that's why i'm grateful for counseling)
and all of this leads me to one conclusion - something S told me a lot at the beginning of my journey and reminds me of now and then - "trust the process." it will be painful. it will be messy. it will hurt. but in the end it will be worth it. so be in the moment. and trust what is happening in your life.