You could call me intuitive. It’s the way I’m wired. I sometimes get a sense about things before they happen. And sometimes I wish I didn’t know.
A few weeks before our recent move from California to Washington State, I sensed a foreboding of sorts. Nothing alarming, just very real to my heart. Hubby and I were riding our bikes on a trail near our home when I casually announced,
“I feel like I’m going to go through a narrow place in our new city.”
He gave me a quizzical look and in typical black-and-white man-fashion with an Italian twist blurted out, “what does that even MEAN?!” as he went on listing every positive, wonderful and practical reason my thinking was flawed on this matter.
After all, this wasn’t his premonition or revelation, it was mine. About me. So I didn’t get defensive, I simply replied,
“I don’t exactly know how to describe it, but in my heart I understand it.”
And I knew in my knower that this was a thing and it wasn’t going away and it wasn’t gonna be easy. And in typical emotional-woman fashion, I cried. A lot.
The rest is history as you might know from my previous blog posts. (Click>> HERE for all the juicy details!) The week of our move I broke my [driving] ankle in two places and was immediately ushered into a very narrow existence, beyond what I had anticipated.
House arrest. Handcuffed by pain and swelling, crutches, then a cast, a second cast, a scooter, and now – the human cone of shame – a walking boot…in the middle of one of the biggest, most complicated moves of my life – my MIDLIFE mind you! Restrained not only by these earmarks of injury but by my utter and often humiliating dependence upon others; their schedules, their intuition, their personalities, their moods, their decisions…and their Costco runs! Thanks be to God!
Narrow? Try suffocating. At times, infuriating. And yes, in particularly helpless moments, depressing. (I may be whining. Sorry.)
Then, the property I felt really excited about (that was potentially gonna earn me boatloads of cash) I tried to buy twice – didn’t come through twice. Sigh. God always answers our prayers, just not always on our timeline or in the manner we expect or with the answer we want, despite our begging. Sometimes the answer is silence. Sometimes the answer is ‘no’. I don’t like ‘no’ except that a ‘no’ is protecting me from the wrong thing, so a ‘no’ is a good answer, right? And sometimes the answer is ‘here, take a break while I work on that.’ #bigeyesemoji
Consequently we decided to rent (which means now I get to move twice, hallelujah) and moved into one of the cool old mansion-turned-apartment buildings in our city; walkable, bike-able…if only I still had my bike, the one I’ve used for 10 years, my faithful companion through the trails and trials of Northern California, but it was stolen. Along with my laundry. My newest most beloved summer pieces – they left some nice ones, too, which made absolutely no sense. (WT? You don’t like ALL my clothes??) Because yes, now I live in an urban as opposed to SUBurban apartment with communal coin laundry a few floors down. I know, QUARTERS! It makes me feel like I’m at a resort LOL. And hubby and I share a bathroom for the first time in….hmm 36 years. That’ll test your marriage. And my scooter doesn’t fit in there. Talk about narrow. Sheesh. And as I hobble about my new city and my new small spaces, I surrender to the burn of the pressing narrow of my now. Hand me a tissue somebody!
A thought came strongly to me the other day, “in quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” Hmm. Ponder that. I think that’s a verse from the Scriptures. Haven’t read that one in ages. Gotta look that up. Yep. Isaiah 30:15.
Lord knows I’ve experienced lots of quiet and alone places in the past 2+ months, and as I reflect upon my adult life, I’d have to say it’s the quiet alone places I’ve found to be the seedbed for the wonderful things in my life. Solitary places of meditation, prayer and repose – I can envision those actual physical, geographical spots even now – scattered literally across the globe the past three decades, which have been places of preparation, even launching pads, for my future.
And I’m reminded that lots of vital and precious substances like coal, zinc, platinum, pearls, gold and diamonds are created in narrow, dark, alone places. In truth, despite the torture of my narrow, I’ve found an oasis of serenity being stuck on my arse without the usual options I enjoyed in my former existence. And I must confess…….I’m almost afraid to go back.
Sometimes you have to go through a narrow place to get to a broad place. Think butterflies and babies.
And sometimes the road gets very narrow right before the break through. And I have a hunch that before long I’m going to understand the importance of this season, my Summer Break on the Isle of Immobility, and I truly hope my struggles have benefitted you somehow. See you next time…