The other night I snuck back onto Instagram and soaked in the mosaic of moments. I got lost in a few feeds that I did feel a new appreciation for now that my mind has the bandwidth to process other artists' work again.
All of the remaining shared moments and intimate words, none connected to my own life in any way at all, left me desiring nothing more but to slip farther into the arms of obscurity. I’ve learned in today's world that obscurity, if we dare let it, equals intimacy.
He fell asleep last night, his hand wrapped around the inside of my elbow. In the past I would have posted it to Instagram so that the world would know that we are in love. I worried for a brief second that my absence from social media has left others believing it's because something awful has happened. It’s just the opposite. We somehow have found ourselves even deeper in love as of late and all I want to do is be with him undistracted.
When I logged off social media I expected to feel disconnected, forgotten, and left out. What I did not expect is arriving at the day where I said out loud that logging off was easily the best decision I've made all year. I couldn't see how odd it all was until I climbed out of the water and saw it from afar.
I've begun writing a book. There is a fire burning deep within me. It's our story burning to be shared. The story of the American Dream that crumbled, leaving two people heartbroken and confused. The story of how I was being prepared for such an unfolding from a very young age. The story of how releasing control and surrender gives us - every single time - the life made for only us.
An excerpt written:
I’ve come to my family’s home tucked in the woods of Banner Elk, North Carolina. I’ve grown-up in this house, spending thousands of weekends, spring breaks, Christmases and summer days here, but this is my very first time in this home by myself. I’ve come to write.
Last week I celebrated another birthday. Thirty-six. This means it has officially been a decade since that walk along the Mississippi river. A lot has happened since then and a healthy, viable pregnancy is not one of them. Yet I am a mother.
An infertile mother.
The walls of my house are covered in photographs of myself squished between the love of my life and small and chubby and long and lanky arms wrapped around my waste and my neck. Our dining room art is made up of tiny hands dipped in neon paint colors and layered onto white paper. Our living room is filled with baskets of Legos and dolls, books and CDs of terrible children’s music that I swore I’d never be the type of mom that would own, much less dance to. I’m a mother. A very happy, very normal, mostly tired mother. I drink wine at night and watch really bad (read: really entertaining) TV and then I tiptoe upstairs and I gently move the hair off their faces before I give them each one, two, three-four-five kisses before I tiptoe back out.
Yet, this story begins and ends with a longing. A longing and a bit of sadness. My life’s thread. It has become my greatest motivator. It grounds and inspires me, reminds me that I’m raw and real and keeps me soft. Just soft enough to hold everything with open palms. Just soft enough to not sweat the small stuff. Just soft enough to feel and act deeply toward things that deserve fiery emotions and action.
This past weekend my pastor told a story about his children saying, “I used to pray for their protection, that God would spare them from pain. But then I learned I had it all wrong so I began to pray instead that God would give them stories.”
God certainly gave me a story. A story I would never have been brave enough to ask for. A story I wouldn’t trade for the world. Not even a pregnancy.