This time I wasn’t going to turn around and go back. That line means so much in so many different ways.
This time I was going to keep going, and even if I looked back, it would only be briefly, in the way that one should walk in the woods, always turning to look back the way you came, so that you can recognize the your path from both directions.
This time I wasn’t going to feel bad about my decision. I’d made it. That’s what mattered.
I tend to worry and wobble and waffle a lot. Should I or shouldn’t I? I run through the myriad variations of what could happen IF....
I’m really good at talking myself out of things. But lately, something’s shifted in me.
Maybe it’s age. I’m coming up on what some folks call “double nickles” and for some reason it feels more significant to me than the big Five Oh. Maybe it’s because my children are all grown, and though not all gone (one is still in college and so will likely be home for a couple more school breaks), my days as FULL-TIME-MOM are over.
Those may be contributing reasons, but I think the main reason is that after spending most of my lifetime doing for and being thoughtful of and working around others, I now want to do some of the things I want to do, whatever they may be, and irregardless of whether others (family, friends, complete strangers) may think.
Yesterday, when I kept driving, and then arrived at my destination, getting my campsite set up all by myself, I felt self-sufficient. Something I’ve not felt very often in my life. Instead, I’ve felt very dependent. Oh, I’ve had moments. But for the most part, I was always something–daughter, girlfriend, wife, mother–that defined me by my relationship with others. And as a result, that’s how I thought of myself. I never thought about what I would do if .... I could do anything I wanted. Because that’s never even been a concept I could relate to.
What’s amusing though is that lately I’ve been thinking of myself as “incorrigible.”
incorrigible |inˈkôrijəbəl, -ˈkär-|
(of a person or their tendencies) not able to be corrected, improved, or reformed: she's an incorrigible flirt.
a person of this type.
That is not something I would have ever thought of myself as in the past. Incorrigible. Or a flirt for that matter. Hahaha.
Where was I? Sorry, I got lost in a bit of a reverie.
And the trees behind me are reflecting on my laptop screen and its pretty. And it’s kinda nice to not be connected to the rest of the world. What I hear is this: someone driving in stakes for a big tent that will provide shelter if it rains (I’m at the Maine Primitive Gathering), someone else setting up their own tent while talking to their neighbor, crickets and cicadas and rustling leaves, the occasional car going by on the road, voices and occasional laughter. A small plane far off. The birds are quiet right now, but I imagine they’ll make their presence known later.
There is no particular point to this post. It’s just me realizing that my life has shifted, and I’ve shifted with it. I still get triggered by situations that evoke memories of past difficulties (there’s a euphemism if there ever was one, hahaha) and react in ways I wish I didn’t. But I do tend to chill once I recognize where my reactions are coming from. In the meantime I may have pissed off and/or upset folks. Or at least exasperated them. Tough. I have to stop apologizing for being who I am.
I want those people who like/love me to like/love me for who I really am. In all my incorrigible glory. Yes, glory. I’ve hid that side of me for far too long. You know that feeling that just makes you want to burst with overwhelming joy? That feeling that makes you want to make love to the whole world - everyone and everything. That feeling.
What’s that saying? Well-behaved women seldom make history. I bet they were incorrigible too.