she flicked the turn signal to right and eased her faithful black van off the too-busy interstate onto a rambling country road. rolling down the windows with relish, she breathed in the bittersweet smells of fall. oak leaves danced across her path as the dried corn stalks swayed along in the fields. sun streams infused her body with warmth and invigorated her soul.
at the sharp s curve, she passed an abandoned farm with a barn lot of ancient, rusted farm equipment. she kept meaning to write a poem about this combine cemetery of steel workhorses put out to pasture, forgotten, yet lovely in their own way. she longed to stop and wander the relics with her nikon in hand. one day soon, she promised herself.
almost-ripe pumpkins glowed in the sun reminding her of the fall activities she had missed the last few years. she made a mental list of the things she wanted to do this year -- the orchard, baking bread with her daughter, carving pumpkins, greeting trick-or-treaters in a funny costume. she’d missed so much as her joy had waned.
her mind turned to her life and the choices she was struggling to make. she’d always believed that every gain in life is balanced with a loss. sometimes the potential loss is evident but most times it sneaks up on you, slowly becoming an unwelcome anchor. she’d been weighed down by her personal anchor for way too long. she knew her path to happiness meant hurting someone else and that it would take a great deal of courage to be healthy again.
determined to enjoy the delicious day, she randomly punched #6 on her dashboard CD player, smiling in anticipation. it had been some time since she’d felt like singing in the car. the opening notes of keith urban’s “days go by” had her foot tapping and her fingers dancing. just like the old days she sang out loud, this time letting the years of hurt and isolation float away. and she thought, so this is what happy feels like.
so many changes in my life right now, all too personal to let out into the world yet. please know that i am feeling better, finding my way and rediscovering the blessed joys in the simplest things in life.