I’m startled by my own weight when the alarm rings and dragging myself up through gravity feels like dueling a rip tide. This isn’t the kind of heaviness that spins the needle on our bathroom scale, though I’m surprised it doesn’t; it feels so tangible, a lead apron clinging to my bones.

I don’t need a scale to tell me I’m off the chart in soul-kilos though. I recognize the heft of each and every piece in this baggage set—

fear of who might be lurking on the other side of a shadow

anxiety over a future that refuses to be planned

disoriented terror that flits from potential disaster to potential catastrophe

every opinion formed about me that I’ve accepted as my identity

every opinion I’ve formed of others that reflects more on myself

dependence on a houseful of breakable, stealable things

my list of wants and the moving target at the end

this worry I carry around like a custom-fitted brick around my heart

stress, stress, stress

and my arch-frenemy, the compulsion to Fit In

They’ve traveled with me into the new year, and here I am, startled by my own weight when I try to lift myself out of bed, up from the table, off the sofa. It’s too much, it’s all too much, and the truth I’m trying to lift my head enough to see is that not a piece in the set is mine to lug around.

I’ve been wrestling with my “one wild and precious life” more than usual lately, and some Big Thoughts are coming to the surface, some surprising twists of perspective that I need to spelunk properly before I share. If I’m a little quieter than usual, that is why; spelunking is a mysterious and silent art, after all. I do know this though—each step back to take in a new angle is a step closer to returning a lighter woman than before.

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  1. Spelunking is something I too have started lately.
    Definitely a new thing for me to do.

    The deeper I go, the more interesting it gets.

    Wish you all the best for 2013!

  2. I will be standing by your side, silently while you spelunk away. Here’s a hug to keep and revisit whenever you need it. xoxoxo

  3. I would say exactly what Megsie said . . . You have my love and support from all the way over here. Spelunk away.


  4. I want to hug you tight. You wrote the very dregs of my heart today. Thank you. 🙂 XO

  5. John – Thanks!

    Megsie – You better believe I’ve been revisiting that hug. Thank you, sweet friend!

    Erika – I know I do. <3

    Krista – "the very dregs of my heart…" I love that writerly heart of yours. 🙂

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