Friday, June 21, 2013

Remember How It Is

Remember the teamwork between the two of you as you travel. The last minute packing, the exhausted anticipation as you drag yourself to the airport and try to check in without coffee in your system. The shyness that overcomes you both as you navigate through gates and trams and baggage claims, holding hands at take-off and smiling all the while. Remember that it was this easy once.

Remember the heat. The wall, the wave of oppression that hits you the moment you open the door. The weight of it suffocates you. Above all it smells warm. Remember the way you enjoyed the stark contrast to home, the way you can live in the moment, briefly, and understand that though harsh, it's seasonal and impermanent.  
 Remember homemade breakfasts and lunches to go. The hurdle jumped when you finally left chicken fingers and blue box mac and cheese behind to try chicken parmesean and wheat pancakes with backyard apricot syrup. Don't forget the love that's folded in each slice of bread, each bowl of fresh fruit, each bought soft-serve.
Remember her quiet strength, always present behind eyes searching for the moon and falling stars, fingers dusted with soil and dirt and clay. The way stories always circle back to Him; His strength, His love, His sacrifice. She wants better than the best for you and if she won't settle, you shouldn't either.
Remember the stories, over and over and over again. Your favorites about the family you've never known, the history of the county she grew up in, the puns and play on words. She challenges you, without intending, to think about how you communicate. You came home with new words on the tongue and a bevy of story ideas.

 Remember the thrill of a new trail and the nostalgia of an old one- the smells and sounds of the world. The crunch of sneakers on a trail, the slurp of a water bottle and the wide-eyed stare of startled deer. Remember the bugs, all over, everywhere- wading through spider webs and stepping on ants. Your stomach squirms (just a little) but you're old and wise enough now to know you're bigger and they won't hurt you.
Remember the way your husband falls quiet when he's done with the day. The way he gets subdued, introspective. Remember that he's here for you, because of you, but most of all with you; forgoing his preference for staying at home to cater to your hiking, car-riding, sight-seeing whims. He loves you like crazy and it's all he can do not to grin like a fool when he sees your childhood haunts.

Remember staying up late to play cards, or read, or just to watch the bonfire burn because you can. There's no pressure to entertain or to fill your moments because your vacation is your escape from reality. Do with it as you please since you answer to no one but yourself. No one can take this outlook from you but you had best defend it dearly, all the same. 
Don't forget how it feels to balance your commitments for once. Worry and stress have no place in the mountains and there's nothing you can email or search or apply for when you don't have internet access, so stop the guilt about not multitasking. This is your moment, your peace and your zen. You needed it, you wanted it, you deserve it. 
Relax. And remember.

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Mrs. E