regrets

an rsvp sent to friends with whom I will be missing our annual reunion.

Good morning friends,

I awakened, as I imagine many of you also may have, to exubertant birdsong celebrating the return of life from the long sleep of winter. I am in Tennessee where the awakening is vibrant. The drive south was like a fast motion film of spring’s arrival, with blooming redbud painting the roadsides and hillsides throughout Virginia before the first dogwoods made their appearance in the southern end of the state. I’m always struck by the way in which the spring vistas seem to be mirroring a subtler shade of autumn, the softer pastels of those reds and yellows and apple-greens washing  over the land.

We visited the Smoky Mountains, for a few brief days, before making our way to Nashville for Easter with my daughter.  There the forest floor was blooming with promise after the devastating fires that had ushered it into its deep sleep last November.

As you know, I will be missing our annual time of reconnection and renewal.  It was not a hard decision at all to accept the invitation to go north when it came, though as with so many decisions to say ‘yes’, there soon came the tension of the necessary ‘no’s’ that were naturally attached to it. Even as I write this, I note the regret that would have me in angst about my decision, but I am seeking to live a life less torn asunder by so many pulls on my heart, a life where I can be present as wholly as possible to the place where I stand.

Perhaps that is one of the reasons I go. When I am there, I am there.

I trust that, with you all, one of my deepest desires will be true, that I can be connected and free at once. A paradox, of course, as all the deeply true things of life seem to be.

Don and I continue to search for that balance, I suppose, too as we seem so often to be pulled in opposite directions…. his ESTJ to my INFP, his southwest to my northeast, his human-made material and concrete world to my natural intangible one.  In good times, we wonder together about our complementary pairing. In stressful ones, we wonder what we were thinking!  I sometimes think about those householder, childrearing stages of life in a marriage, the way that two disparate selves come together to create a separate third, an actual new life into which the two then also come together with mutual passion and love.  I think I am waiting (longing?) for that 3rd love that the two of us might pour ourselves into at this stage of our lives.

Don had a second ankle fusion surgery last fall, and the recovery has been difficult and long. He is still not physically able to walk without a cane and has significant pain. WE are hopeful, but I am coming face-to-face with the reality, much sooner than I’d anticipated, of having married a man 10 years older than me, something that is inviting the deeper practice of surrender in me, no matter how I resist.  It has been a frustrating time in our marriage these last 2 years, as being nurse/caregiver to your partner develops habits, establishes roles, and reveals communication and control issues in the relationship. I have recently realized quite a bit of anger in me at choices and actions made by others, including my husband, that impact the direction of my life. So often, I feel like George Bailey on the train platform with my suitcase in hand… When I am able to step outside and observe, I find it fascinating that my partner developed a problem that kept him grounded in place at precisely the time when my long-waiting spirit had been imagining flight!

Connection and freedom.

I won’t go on, lest I lose you in my endless ponderings, but I wanted to share with you all here something of my life , as I will miss the sharing we have when we are together. ( gosh, and here comes that longing again…. See! It isn’t the other at all, it is me who does this to myself)

Loving you all,

Vicki

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