I braved the cold and went for a walk on the beach this morning. Every time I test myself against the harshest elements of winter, I feel strong. Like I’ve come home to myself.
It was absolutely frigid; my thighs went numb right away despite my long coat.
There were chunks of ice littering the beach that had been thrown out by the waves. It was like walking on broken glass.
I had the beach to myself. I turned my face to the sun, and let my heart crack open a little. The shore of Lake Michigan in the winter felt like the safest place to do so. I was deeply in touch with myself, and strong enough to handle what came up.
I am afraid to be quiet and alone in my new home. I am afraid that I’m not strong enough to face the challenges ahead in the next year.
I am afraid that ending my marriage was the wrong choice. He was one of my best friends- he still is, in fact. I was so tired of struggling to get him to be kind to me. Of swallowing my voice to avoid conflict, of feeling like I wasn’t accepted as fully human by him; being his project to “fix”. Yet, I am still afraid of losing that connection.
I am falling for Hurricane. In my head, I know that it’s a bad idea. I know that I am not even close to the life I want to build for myself. I know that neither of us is in a place to truly commit to another person. My heart won’t listen though. With the next look, or word, or touch, I fear that I’m a goner.
Standing on that beach, I knew, deep in my being, that I can let all of these feelings wash over me. These fears can buffet me like waves on the shore, they can and will change the shape of me. But I will endure. I will emerge from this eternal winter of the soul. I will go on.
I am not able to think in poetry these days. I hope to get back to that sometime soon, but for now I need to accept that the furious creativity of last year is gone.
I hope you’ll find something of value in this new form. I think that I will.