On the way there I saw that rolling farmland which I'd come to see without seeing--a dangerous path to ungratefulness--through Kyle's eyes. I saw again the brilliant, brilliant green that paints the entire countryside. I see the somehow perfect-looking cows, and the dirt roads and tractors, and the little churches and shops... and I felt the closeness and the campiness associated with those images. I felt camp all around me miles from campus. And everything started to feel right. When my phone lost signal, I felt an emotional sigh of relief, nearly physically. When the dust from the road billowed up and settled on the windshield, I settled more comfortably into my seat. Tension in my brow, which I hadn't noticed before, softened... I was home.
We got some business with paperwork out of the way, and we toured campus. Finally I left Natalie alone, left my messenger bag in the car, and we hiked. We just hiked up to the CC and then to the fire hydrant. And it was so nice. It was strange without kids. With children comes a predictable kind of noise: nervous chatter, questionsquestionsquestions, laughing, snapping twigs, and shrieks following buzzing or slithering. Without it, the air felt heavy with silence. It was not uncomfortable, though. I think an older version of myself would have crawled out of her skin in that silence. I needed sound to drown out the information, both true and untrue, I didn't want to acknowledge or remember. I tended to use television, conversation, mindless games, and even books to deflect from my own insecurities and broken-heartedness. But I'm stumbling upon an epiphany I intend to post about after this. I just can't jump around that much.
Anyway. I felt the weight of the silence, and for the first time it was a load I felt capable of bearing. It isn't too hard a hike, but it felt good to do something physical and outside. It felt good to breathe the air I use candles and potpourri to imitate in my daily life. There's magic in untainted air. And then we made our way around Nashville. We ate at the Hob Nob (tip of the hat to Sean), and bought some candy at one of those candy places--both remembering the women we had yet passed up for Mother's Day.
And I talked camp the whole way home. Because it felt good to be there. Because I had so much to say. Because nothing felt right to say and I felt like if I kept going I might figure it out as I go. Truth? It just made me even more of a chatterbox. I'm assuming Kyle didn't mind, because he never stopped me... I feel like he knows me well enough to tell me to shut up when the time comes that I should do so.
I came home feeling so much more positive. I came in through Grandma's side to say hello and to pet the dogs. Grandma likes listening to me talk about camp. She always has. So we sat and told her about our day. That makes her feel important, and I have a feeling it's more lively and less politically charged conversation than she's grown accustomed to with her circle of friends. She's a liberal among elderly, small-town women. She would rather talk to Kyle and I.
I was so cheerful that I didn't mind walking the dogs. I was happy to wait for dinner so I could sit and talk to my parents when they came home from work. I went where they wanted because they'd had a long day, and mine had been full of whimsy and childhood pixie dust and stuff. I didn't throw baby fits about getting refills because I had enough energy to do it. Just didn't mind anything, really.
And then I came home, got ready for bed, and opened myself up to this little free, Dell laptop whom I've named Minerva. I know you think I'm cool, so it's good I don't really care what people think anymore. (More allusions to my Epiphany Post.) Anyway. This is turning into the rant of a tired woman, so I'll let Minerva sleep, and enjoy my rest as well. Good night my tabby cat, and good night my passengers.
|Isn't this picture magic? Tell me this isn't full of whimsy. These are my baby tomatoes.|