Monday, August 10, 2009

Sultry August day

A storm just blew past. It chugged down from the Catawba Valley, skirting the mountains, unleashing its fury in batches as it neared my house.

Rain struck the windows like a million fingers tapping for entry. Thunder angrily told me that the humidity and heat had reached a boiling point. Lightning tumbled across the sky like a million mean pixies hellbent on vengeance.

I huddled by the window, taking it all in. Within moments the weather cleared and the rain stopped, but not before it dumped a 1/4 inch in my rain gauge.

Moments ago, I stepped outside to get a better view of a doe and her fawn and almost gasped at the temperature change. At 11:30 a.m. when I looked at temperature gauge it said 112 degrees in the sun.

Now it's a pleasant, if slightly damp, 75 degrees.

I wonder if it will heat back up and do it all again.

Today I gave myself permission to stop worrying for a while. I have worried since May 1 pretty much nonstop. What would I do to replace my main client? What about our income? How will I get the house my mother left me rented back out when no one seems to want it? How can it be that I am 46 years old and yet again having to reinvent myself? What are my goals? What is my passion? Do I even have a passion? Would it be enough just to be my husband's wife, and nothing else? What else do I need? What do I want? How can I go after something when I don't even know what the something is?

At least for the morning, I ditched all of those questions. I plunked myself down in front of my old computer, which still works but not like it once did, and played Dungeon Siege. It's an old game and I'd played it before but it had been so long I scarcely remembered it. I'd been playing it in small time increments for a few days prior; this morning into lunch time it was an hours-long marathon of hacking and slashing my way through lava terrors and something called a slek in hopes of gaining the ultimate gamer's victory - the screen that says "you win" and then the game credits. The absorption was such that those worries went the way of the evildoers in the Kingdom of Ehb. Everything was in little bitty pieces and seemed much less threatening that way.

My lunch of chicken salad and the tomato from my garden tastes a lot better when it isn't tainted with concern.

Ah, the sun returns. The wet grass is actually starting to steam as it heats up. It's 2:15 p.m., and the day still has many hours.

I think today I will be the husband's wife, and go and tend the laundry.


  1. Anita,

    Some unsolicited advice (but it's free): You WILL reinvent yourself. In the meantime, you are beginning to do just the right thing -- relax, rest, and let your mind wander. Just let it happen.

    I'm 62 and have been forced to reinvent myself several times, mostly because my husband has changed jobs and we've had to up and move so many times that I just gave up on starting a new teaching job in a new state. It's okay. Opportunity presents itself and you can live a creative and enjoyable life if you are just patient.

    Good luck. I have a hunch you'll be fine.

  2. I stopped the re-inventing as well after Hubby moved us four times in 10 years to different cities and different states each time. You begin to know yourself very well and count on yourself for entertainment since the close friends are now all very far away.

    Worrying is not constructive. You have to just let it go, not give it so much thought... opportunities will arise.

    Everyone tells you to write that book... so what are you waiting for?

    The Blue Ridge Gal

  3. When I worry, I re-read this quote I learned during a sermon at my church, "Worry does not empty tomorrow of it's sorrow, it empties today of it's strength". It's from Corrie Ten Boom. What a wise lady!

  4. Some of the questions I've been asking myself. I'm always envious of people who are passionate about something - it doesn't matter what. I just don't have interests at that level. I continue to be optimistic I will stumble across something and feel that way one day.

  5. Rest is one of the first steps toward restoration. It would make sense that you have been hurt and upset about the changes in job. Pause is good. I had chicken salad on tomatoes for lunch as well. Definitely tastes better sans the side of worry.

    So many people seem to find a new direction after 50. You have got lots of time! Maybe as you go through the zen-like motions of laundry and garden and life you will surprise yourself by being on the right path without even knowing...

  6. I'm a worrier from way back and not without reason as almost nothing in our lives has worked out as we've planned. But of course, worry does nothing but eat away at your spirit. It's an ongoing struggle for me to learn to release my worries to God.

    Sending positive thoughts your way, Anita. I hope you can find peace so that you can write that novel. There's no better time than now.

  7. Shed the guilt of enjoying yourself, and don't set a time frame on who you need to "become." You're already there...

  8. I too think a lot about who I really am and what I'm doing with my life and time. Sometimes I imagine escaping into some little job that would take no emotional investment or challenge on my part. But then I know I couldn't bring myself too. Sometimes I want to be anonymous.


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