In the last few years, the month of November is filled with reminders of my personal pendulum. The sway see-saws as I move from sadness to happiness, struggle to grace, and darkness to light. This November the same pattern continued. I’ve experienced some of the same emotions. My vague undertones and overtones color my words. I am sorry, but my ambiguity is purposeful.
I am holding back. Even I am willing to acknowledge that all stories cannot be told. Because not everyone can or is willing to understand what we carry. And what we sometimes hide.
These reflections culminated in a moment I experienced over Thanksgiving. For the second time, I decided another feeble attempt to ski. I already felt heavy, the ski pants and jacket felt like an astronaut suit on my body. As soon as I landed in my ski boots, I took a single step. Each movement felt as if I not only carried the gravity of my current emotions, but also the weight of what I couldn’t see or feel. My arms hugged my skis and poles and the imbalance materialized in my walk. Each step, even before I hit the ice, was tentative.
Even with all this hesitation, I committed this slice of time to skiing. With an awkward shift, I moved my boots into the skis. The slipping and sliding was expected. I steadied myself, shifting the weight of my body so I could stand without falling. I kept repeating, “You can do this. You got this.” I looked up and saw that so many were doing perfect circle eights in the snow and they stopped and started in their skis as if their whole life they prepared for this particular meeting with the ice.
Firm with conviction, I placed one ski on the sliding escalator that led to slope and the unforseen happened. I slipped not on the ice, but the moving belt. Tilted to the side, I stared ahead for a moment. Inside I filled up with a little anger. Why did I fall? Why couldn’t I just get this? It led to other bigger questions as I struggled to convince the skis to separate from my boots. Several minutes later, I pulled myself up and gathered my skis, poles, and ambled toward a nearby bench.
Inside I welled up with tears. At that single tick of time, I realized that sometimes I am tired of the process. The process is hard and filled with no guarantees. And it may not lead to success. Or it may.
I understood something about myself. What is holding me back? I am unwilling to commit to the fall.