One of my favorite lines of Buddy Wakefield's is from his poem "Information Man": "Even at your fucking worst, you are incredible. So return to yourself, even if you're already there, because no matter where you go, or how hard you try, or what you do, the only person you're ever gonna get to be, and I know it--thank god--is you."
How often do we mistake ourselves and our reality for our mind's imagination of our reality? How many distractions do we seek out? I've thought a lot about refuge of late, and the fact that most often we seek refuge in the way we want things to be instead of the way they are. And in the past weeks? I've been afforded the luxury, the absolute embarrassment of riches, of finding refuge in the way things are.
I've found refuge in the past weeks in the spaces that have been present all along, but that require me to be able to get my mind and body in the same space so that I can actually see what is afforded me. I had to get quiet and still enough--to fight my (instinctual) flight response--to be able to see where I am.
This journey to remain still was punctuated by a singular, but not isolated, experience of reconnecting with a best friend--of the past and now the present. The simplicity of walking alongside someone who knew me in striped tube socks with chlorine streaked hair as the partner in crime who read every book in the school library in elementary school--and was right beside me in the quest. A friend who knew me again as someone who couldn't quite wrap her head around the small midwestern town that she was plonked into as a teenager (when I showed up in Birkenstocks and flowing skirts in the world of blue eye shadow and permed hair). And someone who has lived a parallel life all along--and sought out the tough answers all along as well. For many this might be par for the course, but for military brats, this is not. The connections and good-byes are recurrent, and the idea that paths will cross again? Slim to none. This latest reconnection was not a dwelling or worshipping of the past, but the recognition of the past that has shaped who we are. It's so rare to be able to celebrate who we are and where we come from in this world. So often we get trapped in the longing for the past or the constant stories, but sometimes it's so liberating to say, "whoa, we lived through all of that and learned a shit lot." [Note: I've determined that "shit lot" or "fuck lot" are phrases that should be used sparingly, but regularly. I think they communicate quite a bit.]
So, here's to imagination and reality merging. Here's to the embarrassment of riches we find when we truly inhabit the spaces we stand in. Here's to no more second-guessing, to moving through, to not clinging, but to knowing who and what is important to make time for. And breathing through the rest.