"Tell me it's all going to be ok," I said in an email. "You can lie if you have to, I just need to hear that it's all going to be ok."
"It's not," She told me, "It's going to be what it is. But you're going to be ok."
It was the last Wednesday in October and I was driving down the back roads at night, the radio playing so loud it drowned out my thoughts. As loud as it was, something about the whole thing felt still. Even though I was tucked safely behind the windshield of my car, it was like I could feel the wind coming through, going right through my sweater and the layers of my skin and blowing between each rib that makes up my ribcage, whipping away all the thoughts and fears and needs I had and leaving only stillness and serenity. And for a split second, it was all ok. Everything I needed was right here, for one minute. I felt full but for the first time in days that feeling of fullness didn't hurt. It felt like safety, security, solace.
I'm not sure if it's possible to find Holy Ground in the driver's seat of an old Jetta but if it is, I think I found it.
I have this friend who says things I think about saying but never do. And I told her this one day, sitting in a school assembly squished between her and another person. She told me that I should say it anyway, and who cares what people think.
I watched a spoken word once about apologizing for taking up space. It was late June and I decided to stop making apologizes for how I chose to live my life. "I'm sorry," I said rather defiantly, "But I'm not sorry."
I'm not sorry for saying I love you and meaning it.
I'm not sorry for loving too much.
I'm not sorry for believing in God and love and magic and the hidden power that comes in a box of hair dye and a tube of red lipstick.
I'm not sorry for not being the person you want me to be and I'm not sorry for needing you and I'm not sorry for not having it in me to be the person who can still look at you the same way and not be bitter and not be the person who has these moments where all I feel is the pain and it hurts so much I can't breathe and a scream gets trapped in my lungs where it turns to ash.
As I lay here, with all of these feelings pressing hard up against my bone, I remind myself of this. I remind myself that one day all of this will have burned down to ash that I will then scatter in the wind of the wide open space I've learned to call home and it won't hurt as much as the burning of it all.
And I remind myself that life will be what it is, but everything I need is right here, even if I don't see it yet, and that no matter what happens I will be ok.