this weekend i made an impulsive decision to drive to salt lake city to spend time with a friend. for the first time in years, i’m working an 8-5 job and have had the feeling that i’m losing my sense of adventure. truth is, i just needed to get out of town. so, after work on saturday, i began the drive through colorado, wyoming and finally, utah. the last few hours were spent in a whiteout, but once i pulled up to the house, the tense shoulders relaxed and the stress disappeared. the next 30-odd hours were spent laughing, drinking coffee, taking in a movie at sundance, eating good food, wandering around cities i’d never experienced. and i did with a person i love and admire, which is even better. impulsivity paid off this time.
i left at a god-awful hour on monday in order to make it to work by the afternoon. but just minutes out of the city, i hit a patch of ice and my car began to spin. it spun a complete 360 but i gathered myself and was able to gain control as i crossed the three lanes of i-80. the car spun another 180 and i ended up at the edge of an embankment, facing the wrong direction. no cars were in sight and i marveled at what i assume was divine providence – that i was unharmed, not a (new) scratch on my car and no one else was hurt. i gathered my bearings, turned the car around and continued the drive home. grace.
last night i was out with a friend and i was recalling the ways my life has felt like a shit show lately, BUT it’s also been filled with an oft unnoticed grace. in the midst of dealing with a less than desirable set of circumstances and consequences, i’m alive and i’m okay. and i’m choosing life. choosing life means walking through the pain and not ignoring it. and sometimes it means asking others to join us in that pain and lend perspective. another kind soul reminded me this morning that suffering is what happens when we avoid the pain. it’s unrealistic to ignore the pain and expect life to be grand. instead, choose to acknowledge it, muddle through it, trusting that there is grace at the end, enjoying the really beautiful moments on the way through. enough with shaming ourselves and others because of pain. to walk through difficulties with honesty and grace is ennobling and hopefully enriches our experience on earth. so, here’s to being a little more honest with ourselves and giving ourselves and those around us a little more grace than we think necessary.