In 2008, I was a crew member for an eight man team on the Race Across America, which is a 3,000 mile bike race from Oceanside, California to Annapolis, Maryland.
At one point in the race, I found myself in a large dirt parking lot. I had no idea what state we were in. I wasn't even sure what day it was. I was at my wit's end with fatigue and emotion. All I could do was walk in circles around the parking lot, trying to figure out my emotional state of mind. I managed to get ahold of my oldest sister during one of my loops and I burst into tears at "hello". I vaguely remembering blubbering about not thinking "it would be like this". She very kindly laughed and said, "I was waiting for this call."
That sentence stopped me in my maniacal looping.
It blew my mind that this emotional state of mind could be remotely "normal", given the circumstances. (sleeping in four hour shifts, driving endless hours behind cyclists, getting up and jumping into a car in the middle of the night, and the middle of the United States..) I somehow always manage to think I should "hold it together" just a little bit more. Shouldn't I be charging ahead? Aren't I immune to hitting a wall? It's such a good cause, how can I be ready to pack my bags and run home?
my husband, rocking the latest in hospital garb. i prefer leopard print over hospital wear.
When I got home this afternoon, I realized I felt like I needed to find a dirt parking lot and call my sister.
At the same time, I felt silly for wanting to do so. After all, life is GOOD.
My husband is healing nicely after his bowel resection. My eldest is home for a couple of days to help out. We have had friends reaching out, praying, bringing meals, taking care of Brenna, etc.
But at the same time, my husband, who I liken to a shark (if they stop swimming they die) is sleeping 10 hours at night, takes a three hour nap during the day and-are you ready for this?
WATCHED THREE MOVIES. IN A ROW.
So, yes. I will admit it.
I needed a dirt parking lot today.
All these emotions!!! Good ones, hard ones, tired ones. They take up so much brain space. They take up so much room in my chest. I don't realize how much until it's too much.
Instead of beating myself up for taking up room and feeling needy, I realized that this amazing ability to FEEL is o.k., and there are times in life when the emotion meter is going to be on the crazy side, and maybe a dirt parking lot is the safest spot I can be in.
i want to be in the dirt parking lot that this guy pulls into.
I vote for this during the next couple of days:
Take a walk. Even if it's in circles.
Know that you are normal.
Call your sister.
Call me and I'll tell you that you are normal.
Have a second cup of coffee.
Put on your favorite sweats and slippers.
Hug your husband.
Kiss your child's head.
Go to bed early.
Love you all.