|found via facebook, artist unknown, please contact me for credit|
There’s a chill in the air. Her body is tight. When she takes a breath, the air stays up high, never reaching her belly but racing around in place somewhere behind her throat and at the top of her chest. She can’t do anything about it. It’s just the way it is. Every year at this time. With the first hints of Fall.
As she walks, she listens to her heels on the sidewalk. They sound hollow. Unless she steps on a leaf or a tuft of weed sneaking out between the cracks. Then they sound muted, muffled, their hollowness softened by nature.
Softened by nature. What a funny thought, she thinks. And there’s her breath again, still stuck behind her throat, at the top of her chest. She looks up, wondering if she can shake it lower like a long-necked goose trying to shimmy down its food. And when she does, she sees it.
Dark and foreboding, hovering with weighted promise, and inviting, no begging her to take out her umbrella. And fast.
She rummages through her bag and finds it without a second thought. Always prepared. Always ready for the worst. She smiles at her cunning. Softened by nature? Ha. Aware of its tricks.
She pops open the umbrella.
And the wind begins to howl.
She holds on tight. No way this black hover cloud is going to turn my umbrella inside out. It’s her favorite. The red one with the white polka dots that goes with everything. And, not just that, she hates getting wet. So she holds on tighter, angling it just right—into the wind—the way her grandmother once taught her. It’s her against the black hover cloud. And she’s got one up on it. She’s aware of its tricks.
Did it see her smirk?
Did it hear her dare?
Or was it happenstance?
Definitely not happenstance.
This was orchestrated.
That black hover cloud let its wind howl so hard and fierce that it lifted that red umbrella and its owner right into the air, finessed it so nicely that not even a single prong got bent out of shape.
And refused to let go.
And fought hard.
She wasn’t going to let it win.
This was personal.
And she had the upper hand.
She pulled and finagled, and sweat beaded up on her forehead and under her arms, and when she wanted to cry she scowled instead, gritting her teeth and making her body as weighted as she possibly could.
Let me down! She screamed.
I didn’t ask for this!
Give me back my simple walk to work.
Give me back what I had planned!
But that black hover cloud didn’t care what she had to say. Instead, it took her higher and higher, further and further away from anywhere she had ever planned on going. Further and further away from any thing she had ever known.
Until finally, she took a breath. A real breath. A deep breath. The kind that takes the air right down into your lowest belly. Yep…she did one of those. And boy, did it felt good. So good that she did it again. And that one relaxed her so much, she lost her hollow shoes. They fell right off. And her bag of remedies? It fell, too. Swirled like pigeon poop all the way down, down to the ground with a plunk. And you know what she did then? She laughed. As she flew through the air, surrendering to the winds of her life, no longer attached to everything she had planned, but now, finally, just enjoying the ride, she laughed. And laughed and laughed and laughed.
* * *
This week my Wish for you is to surrender to those things that sweep you away, unexpectedly, from what you had planned. For your day, for your week, for your life. To surrender to a force bigger than yourself, to the wisdom of the universe, and to trust, that where it is taking you, is much more beautiful than anything you ever could have designed for yourself. For when we surrender, we see with new eyes, hear with new ears, and live lives driven by inspiration, not fear. By wonder not expectation. By faith in the magic of life. And maybe best of all, we grow older with joy, with happy … with laughter.