There was a day like today, almost two years ago exactly. I was walking the trails at Campbell Station Park with the dogs. It was a gorgeous fall day. And there was a moment on that walk that was a perfect, single moment of clarity and peace. Everything felt right with the world. I was as happy as I had been in a long, long time. We'd been in our house a year, and married just a little longer. We both were feeling secure in our jobs, Matt was doing well in school, and I had beaten the most recent challenge in my life, my Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis. I felt good that day. Really, really good.
And then, as we all know, a few days later the shit hit the fan. I lost my job, my focus, my family contentment. I cried a lot. And even though the two years since has seen it's bright spots (becoming a cake decorator full time, Matt graduating and getting accepted to law school), I haven't been as happy since. The last few months, in particular, have been possibly the worst. Charles' passing and my dad's health have weighed heavily on my family. Matt constantly battles frustration with his job and with law school, and sometimes I feel like I'm the only thing keeping him from quitting it all. And while most days it's nice to feel like the good thing in someone's life that keeps them grounded, it's a whole different feeling the bad days, when you feel like the anchor that's dragging them down. Medications and lifestyle changes have piled on 20lbs or so that I worked so hard to lose. It's not in my nature to be a depressed person, and to simply exist in this manner has exhausted me, frustrated me, to the point where I no longer feel like myself. I've disappeared. Life is complicated, and I know it was just as complicated on that sunny October day two years ago, but Oh, did it seem so much more manageable back then...
Today was my second Monday home. The second week in a row that I have handed over to my replacement at work. I worked three days last week, and just on custom cake orders. I'll work two days this week, doing the same. Next week, I might only go in once. We're slowly cutting the cord, and I've reached that point I needed to, where I no longer want to be there. I'm ready for the job to be hers. I'm not sorry, not scared. I don't regret this decision to leave, however totally confusing to everyone it may be. That job was never supposed to be permanent. It was a temporary measure, a quick fix, it was a job when I needed one, and it was in a field I had to explore, just to see if I wanted it to be my forever. I don't. It's beyond my time to go.
I got up this morning with the alarm, as usual. Matt and I had breakfast together, and then each retreated to our respective computers for a while, just as we start every weekday. When I finished, I went back upstairs to our bedroom where Matt was at his desk. I was feeling crampy, and since I wasn't obligated to be anywhere, I climbed back in bed, whining and puny. The dogs curled up on either side of me while Matt took his shower and got ready for work. He brought me some aspirin and kissed my forehead before he left. I stayed in bed for a bit, feeling guilty as I watched the sky turn from pink to blue, listening to the garbage truck cruise the neighborhood and thinking of Matt and everyone off to work, being productive. The aspirin kicked in, and I felt purposeful again. I rolled out of bed, threw on some sweats, and loaded the dogs in the car. We were at the park at exactly 9:00.
Still in the mid 40's, it was a chilly morning, and our breathing left frosty little cloud trails as we climbed the hills. The first lap felt so good, we did a second. I do all my best thinking out there on those park trails. And I thought about how happy I was to have this time to myself, to have left the bakery and to be working on my LIFE. To be getting my house in order. To finished and folded loads loads of laundry on the bed. To a weeded garden, trimmed shrubs, fresh mulch and newly potted mums. To being clear headed and focused for the first time in a long time. To be climbing those hills, working my body, increasing my heart rate and improving myself, my health, my life.
And suddenly, I had a familiar feeling. It was one I haven't had in two years. I had my moment, once again, of perfect clarity and contentment. I had my moment of peace.
I'm back. And, you guys, I think....everything's gonna be all right.