I work with my hands. Right now they have several tiny cuts and a couple rough blisters from sweeping our back patio and back yard borders and mopping floors. There's a callous under my wedding ring. For the past couple days they have ached off and on. And they are always dry. I wash them constantly throughout the day after dishes, laundry, before preparing food, after picking up the yard, after touching the dog or the kids' dirty socks and shoes that litter my living room. I should thank God for these hands that work so well they bear the marks of their labor perpetually. Nevertheless, when I touch my husband's bare skin, I am always self-conscious about my rough working hands.
His? Well, they are a desk job's hands. Always smooth and supple. No callouses, no scratchy fingertips.
My words pour out of me, their genesis in my tumultuous thoughts. I try to bite them off, chew them up, keep them from coming out, but, inevitably they come. Forget bottling up my words that feed off my emotions! I need to let them go. Release them like a continual balloon message for heaven, doing no harm to me or others here on earth. But I am flooded with words that come from thoughts that gnaw on my feelings that roam in packs. I should be grateful for words and thoughts and feelings that can inspire my writing, but I wish I could just let them go, could sneak out to find some peace away from myself. I am not using them for my writing in any productive way right now. I am stuck all day with them, alone together in this house.
As for him? He is calm unless I ruffle him. He has few excess thoughts, fewer excess emotions. Considerably less words.
The days now are not what I envisioned they would be. I thought I would feel a greater sense of purpose in my writing. I thought I would complete a thousand projects. Storm the halls of creativity and contemplation. Be content, inventive and energetic. Be studious...purposeful! But I am floundering. Feeling still incompetent, not doing anything full throttle as a wife, mother, writer, friend, volunteer. My days are full and empty. They seem to drag and pass quickly. And I am still who I was. The woman who writes too little, cleans too infrequently, doesn't spend enough time with her kids or respond to their needs or wants as quickly as she should. I am still the Nowhere Woman.
And he is going somewhere constantly, surrounded by people. But he's earned it.
What can a woman with rough hands, too many thoughts, emotions and words, and long, fast, dragging days do? Well, she can thank God she is alive. And she can thank Him
for her children
for her husband
for her health
and her many words that she must wrangle every day to ward off explosions
for her family's abundance of food
for a life in the United States of America
for her husband's excellent desk job that provides so well
for her time, her sweet time with beautiful human beings
for her volunteer work with children, done by the grace of God
for her chance to fight to be the writer she knows she should and can be
for all the abundant, beautiful, enriching, magical, mystical, natural and supernatural LOVE she has known every day of her life.
And she can and must remind herself that, from herself and for herself - in the pithy words of John Lennon - all you need is Love.