Easy to say but not easy to do.
I’m snuggled on a couch, old dog snoring next to me as I rest a foot fresh from surgery. A small growth in the my arch and the breakup of my 32 year marriage has brought me to this point. I harbor in an old church converted to a home, not mine. A unique woman keeps me sane and safe while my mind flushes again and again trying to clear out so much debris.
In a little while it will be time to move back aboard, back on Ava. There is still unsettled business and many questions. I look forward to the time these aspects of my life are rendered powerless. I think about them constantly making it hard to focus on anything else.
It’s Christmas eve. Tomorrow it’s time to open presents, eat and drink too much. It’s a time to be with family. I’m missing mine terribly.
Why not be with them? They are ghosts to me. Quiet and in the background. My boys are young men with lives of their own. We hear from them rarely but I don’t blame them. Thinking back to when I was so young I was too much on fire about life to spend much time with my ‘old’ family. Girls, their family, new adventures were all I thought about. My sons are now me. I wish them well and love them very much. My daughter has distanced herself, a part of her Mom’s world and all the female that implies. My hopes for her are that sometime down the road she comes back to me, at least to ask a few questions. She is as strong as the boys, maybe stronger, and will do well.
Often we do what is needed to transition from one generation to the next, protecting each other long enough to be safely buried, all cares gone. Somewhere in that process a person may falter, stumble, even fall. We help that wayward soul back to the path if possible. If he fails we label him a deviant, shaking our heads in disbelief.
Once in a great while someone breaks with this tradition, stepping outside the lines without the expected crash. They ask the question ‘why’? There are so many quotes from great men about the young ignoring the lure of societies expectations to become their own person, but that leaves me wondering about the rest of us.
I would ask, what about the older explorers? We started down the expected path, preformed as required (and wanted!). Our lives unfolded as needed and yet our unrest was always there for those looking for reasons. Late in life our stumble is explained away as so much latent childlike behavior. The idea of this mid-life crises is legendary, made fun of.
It’s real and those of us cursed/blessed with it are shaken to the core. We can not so much ignore it as we will try again and again to control it.
My life has been one of uneasy distraction that I think has culminated in my own crises, the one I’m living now. But that is for another time. I wish to write about recent events and why I am here reminiscing about Christmas on this Christmas Eve.
But I get ahead of the story, because even though recent events didn’t begin with her, I can safely say my midlife crises started with Ava Chantel.