1. What (woman) hasn't sat outside like this centering herself around some courage she knows God gave her, asking "why"? Knowing deep down she doesn't have to be brave. She just has to do it because the Author of her life has written this part for her and to deny it is to deny His love. And there isn't a bone in her body that could turn from that kind of love. Not a single bone. So she packs, she loves, she leaves her love in several places, one in her home, the other in her guitar, her notebook, her voice, her garden, her dreams with the tears in them.
2. What woman hasn't cried herself to sleep while the one beside her could have held her then but didn't?
3. Who told her she couldn't, had no right to, couldn't dare, wouldn't ever be able to, was too loud, too big, too bold, too stupid? What woman hasn't believed it and spent years with tears trailing behind her, shoulders slumped like a deadly umbrella over the seeds of her footprints, too shy, too shy?
4. What woman rises alone in the morning and balances the necessity of herself, her children's selves and the care of them between the love and work? She wants to give herself completely to them, in their hearts and in her heart and in the other hearts she speaks to but the time passing and the amount of space seem limited and, damn, she's getting older, and getting older is making her curse more because. Just because.
5. What woman hasn't had days she couldn't drive her kids to school because she was sick but she did laundry, cooked bread, played, bathed, loved, sang to, pulled red tomatoes free, cleaned the mud from shoes, emailed and prepared to speak in public?
6. And what woman hasn't felt the sin of self-pity creep into the lines around her eyes as she looks in the mirror in the morning and gets dressed because getting dressed means you are prepared to meet people, talk to people, be somebody, not doubt, but live with all her heart and soul and the work of her hands? She gave it all to God because He first gave it to her.
7. And reading devotions anytime she eats, what woman hasn't asked forgiveness for the days spent just getting by, ignoring that everything is gift? Everything is worthy of praise. Even this moment when she thinks so little of herself.
8. What woman has been afraid to say words like these because she was supposed to be perfect, supposed to have faith, supposed to know, to have it together, living right, aware of blessings, a good mom, good at her job, but still alone, still not sure what the future holds and honestly scared a lot of the time when she thinks she might have to do it like this the rest of her life.
9. What woman knows that the precarious emotional roller coaster of having only been alive for four years isn't something we should be afraid of? That we can love them, hold them, guide them, accept them, see the gift in the leg throwing, "I will go out and get another mommy," eyes like deep souls that simply feel too much at one time? And yes, I have felt that, too, dear one. Come here and I'll hold you till it passes.