Just today, the weather turned a bit. As I type, I can hear the wind raking through the willow trees, scattering green confetti on my patio. I am in my salon (as some Spanish call the living room), with a quilt on my lap, the only sound being the click of the keyboard and my dog’s steady slumber.
But before I sat down, there was breakfast and school uniforms. Pestering. Noise. And I felt an exhaustion deep in my bones—this is my life; I will forever be peeling clementines and pouring glasses of milk. So many hours spent making beds and brushing teeth, packing lunches and sweeping the front patio.
And now, as another gust rocks the house, I give myself what I need. Hot peppermint tea and my lumpy green couch. I hear my yearnings, which only unlock themselves when I write.
Today, I watched the man in front of me order the ingredients for las lentejas—he spoke with Manolo, as he placed an onion, carrot, garlic, and a pepper in a bag. He would take all the ingredients home, and cook them with lentils, making a warm, delicious soup.
I didn’t know you could do that–order a recipe. I asked Manolo about it, and our words just didn’t meet up. “Espero que mi espanol era mejor,” I said. I wish my Spanish was better. As I walked away, I felt little pinpricks behind my eyes. Why?
Because I fear I will squander my time here, breaking up squabbles and driving to Boy Scout meetings. That exhaustion will prevent me from running a half marathon, or completing my book, or getting a handle on the past and imperfect tenses.
And so, I write about it. Sometimes you read about it, but often, it’s for me.
Writing is my prayer. I feel an unwinding, like a kite unfurled. I write myself into the sky, finally unbound.
I can detach myself when I write. I read back my own fears and worries. And like Christopher Robin, I muss my own hair, and mumble, “Silly old bear.”
Because it’s always scarier and harder in your mind than in the world. Sharing is a release. When I write, I breathe.
When I step out into those gusty winds again, I will smile and nod to Manolo as I walk to the school. I probably won’t order lentils from him today.
But because I wrote, I may try tomorrow.