Don’t focus on their path, he said. You follow me.
August 29, 2014 § 3 Comments
When I was 23, I had never had the experience of walking into a restaurant and sitting at a table alone.
To be honest, I hadn’t yet learned the value of quiet and stillness and solitude. More on that later. The closest I had come was sitting on the roof of the farmhouse I occupied in Canada. When you walked up the stairs, there was a small kitchenette at your feet, a bedroom to the left and a bedroom to the right. Straight ahead was this awkward common area and two more bedrooms. The place was massive – 6 bedrooms in all – and 13 of us lived under the one roof. It could be, well, stifling. When it got warm, I would sometimes crawl out the tiny window in that awkward common area and sit on the roof and just be still.
At 23, I felt this need to try to sit alone at lunch. So, I walked into The Olive Garden (judge away!) and asked for a table for one. As I’ve come to know is the norm, they confirmed “Just one?” Yep, just me. And let me tell you, it was the most difficult lunch I think I had ever eaten up until that point. This was before smart phones (I know – WHAT?!) and there was little distraction. I visibly squirmed the entire time.
But, a tiny little piece of me knew that was good for my soul. And so, I almost subconsciously tried to find moments to be alone. The invention of incredible earbuds helped this. I’m in line behind arguing families and piles of drama amongst a group of 12 year olds out for the movies? Lalala, earbuds in, problems out. Sometimes, it’s nice to get wrapped up in solitude. On the whole, I feel like not enough people know how to do this. And I don’t know why because it’s the most liberating thing EVER. Just today, as I’m hiding out at a friend’s beach house, I went to the store. In my basket was a malbec, great bread, brie cheese, two peaches, some hot tea and an entire bag of Chex Mix Muddy Buddies that I plan to eat as quickly as possible.
And NO ONE CAN STOP ME.
I know, amazing, right?
I came back to my home-for-the-week and went and had dinner with myself on the beach in a swimsuit. Then, I went swimming.
All of you Momma’s kind of hate me, I’m pretty sure. And that’s the rub.
Being a Momma is your lot.
It’s the rub because since I was 23, and for years before, I’ve longed to be called Momma. You can read about it all over this pretty well-worn blog. When I see you, it’s everything in me not to just take your babies out of your hands. There are times that I, literally, have to have an internal conversation to prevent this. I wrestled for years with the fact that I wasn’t yet holding wee ones of my own and I don’t ever talk about it in person because it overwhelms the outgoing facade you see every day.
It’s better now. My ovaries only come tromping up the stairs to yell at me occasionally. They like to holler the loudest when we see brilliant papa’s with their kids or a man with class throws us a really long glance. Let’s get real, occasionally I can get bitter and sad. I just try to not stay in that moment. Sometimes, me and the girls argue behind closed doors, but it’s rare.
Yes, I’m talking about myself and my ovaries in the third person. Don’t you judge me. 😉
I mean, seriously though, I would rock the baby selfie photo market.
For now, though, I’m okay by myself. Though I’ve felt like I was meant to be a Momma, my path is no less beautiful. My experience as a woman is no less valuable. I said about a year ago, I asked Jesus for babies and he brought me a business. And I adore it. 🙂 This is my lot.
My path is my path and it doesn’t look like your path. It doesn’t make either one less beautiful. And until a husband and babies comes along on my path, I hope you’ll let me hold your babies and chase your toddlers and throw around the 4-year olds and help with homework and buy backpacks for those that are going off to college. Small acts that keep the ovaries from screaming. And I’ll use my gifts to show you that you’re beautiful. Please sit in front of my lens.
I will happily bring you coffee and let you visit parts of the world you wish you could see through pictures on a screen. Because while you’re here wishing you could go, I’m there, wishing you were standing next to me.
You women are gorgeous.
No matter your lot.