I awoke to the phone ringing. I answered.
“Where are you?!” she pressed.
“In bed!” I yelled, jumping up as I realized the problem. “I’ll be there! I’m coming!”
Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! I may have brushed my teeth. I grabbed the bag I had packed. Luckily we lived really close to the airport. Sometimes planes flew right over the house. My husband drove me, really fast. Luckily, too, he was a cop and had been trained for that.
“Please let me go to the Bahamas today,” I said over and over in my mind, to Whomever Grants the Wishes.
It was my birthday. We had a plan to get away. To escape our business for a few days. To shake off the cold, wet Spring with some sand and sun. I also needed a break from him, from the conscious effort it takes to accept someone’s addiction day after day while living with it.
It was the shortest wait in an airport I have ever had – more like a beeline through. She stood there with an attendant so as I got to security, they said “C’mon, c’mon!” She has a way like that. People bend to her will. She held up the plane. We were the last ones on. Some people stared. We flopped into our seats, exhaled and laughed. Off on another adventure.
Those were the end years. The waiting was intense. The clock ticking. A window was closing, I could just feel it. I would say to my friends, “If I go through all this and then someone else gets him sober, I’m going to be pissed!”
12 step meetings. Live and let live. Boundaries. Move the boundaries. Acceptance, compassion. Focus on myself. More acceptance. But most of all patience. It’s got to end sometime, right?
There was just enough to keep it alive. Like living on crumbs. Some good times. Mutual respect, care, a match of wit, a lot of humor, and years and years of history.
One day at a time, they said. Which adds up. A year, and another. During which I learned presence. “Is this ok for me today?” I would ask on the regular. It was. And it was. Then it wasn’t. It was one lie that broke the camel’s back. An insignificant one but the last one.
The window closed. Yet somehow a great wind came through and swept my life clean down to the dirt floor. I left the house I had chosen. I had to put my dog down. He and all the excitement and drama that he brought were gone. The life plan scrapped.
You know what comes then? Lying down. Glorious, uninterrupted sleep. A great deal of quiet. Some tears. Then you get to turn it all on yourself – the acceptance, the compassion, the hard-earned patience. They’re gifts for you, for waiting.
This is a piece that flowed out as part of a 21 Day Writing Challenge that I am in the middle of right now. We meditate and receive a prompt each day to start the writing, then write for about 30 minutes. I am including this in the Listening to Life Whispers series as the part on life speaking to us through others, through our relationships. It’s a not-so-subtle Life Whisper. It’s learning and growth that we need, gifted to us, often by the challenging people in our lives.
Is life talking to you right now through a lover, relative, co-worker or boss, or someone else presenting a challenge? What is it that they are helping you to cultivate?
Are you learning to stand up for your self and find your voice?
To focus on yourself?
Trust that it is the perfect thing for you to learn and develop right now. Our souls came here seeking lessons. Say “Thank you.“