Funny thing about epiphanies - they happen when you least expect them. My most recent one was here, on vacation in Chicago. We have rented an apartment for the week, and it’s amazing. The three bedroom, two and a half bathroom apartment has a fabulous view of downtown and the lake and is right next to Grant Park. We’re in walking distance to...well, everything! The decorations are minimalist and refreshing, speaking as someone who has been living in a much-too-small-home for the last couple years. By minimalist, I mean... there’s really nothing. In the master bedroom, there are two framed pieces of woven bamboo and one red clock. One.red.clock.
The night we arrived, I noticed that the time was off on the clock in my room. I took it down, set it to the right time (3 am) and hung it back up. I figured the next morning I would know if I had fixed it or if it was just needing a new battery.
The next day Max said something about not knowing what time it was since the clock in my room said it was 3. I told him it was a dead battery and not to worry about it. Then a funny thing happened... I realized I heard the tick, tick, tick of the clock on the wall. Weird. Upon further examination, I realized it wasn’t a dead battery, it was a stuck clock.
The second hand just keeps going... and getting nowhere. Nowhere! From the sound of it, the clock is functioning just fine. Look at the clock for a moment and you think it’s in working order. A casual glance won’t really tell you that the clock is not fine. Not fine. Not in working order. Working on the surface, but a mess inside. Spinning in it’s tracks.
The red clock is stuck in time. Then, the epiphany...stuck in time... just like me. This is the place I have found myself in for the last few months. Time’s gone on, things have changed, and as the weeks and months have passed I feel like nothing.has.changed. Without getting into the personal details too much, I’ve been waiting for time to heal the pain... for the passing of time to magically take me to a place of peace and acceptance... to finally be in a place where I don’t live in the what ifs and the regrets of things said or not said - constantly wondering about what might have been. I’m a stuck clock.
Let me tell you, it hasn’t been fun at all. I haven’t been “happy.” I haven’t been “ok.” In Alison Krauss’ song “Paper Airplane” she sings a line that makes so much sense to me: “How many days should I smile with a frown?” How long do I have to hide the sadness, the discontent, the longing that’s been in my heart? How long do I have to wait...
I have spent so much of the last seven years of my life waiting. Waiting for the divorce to be final. Waiting for the court stuff to be over. Waiting for the next job. Waiting for the right guy to come in to my life. Waiting...waiting...waiting. The whole time, I’ve been wanting things - wanting to move, wanting to start my writing full-force, wanting to do what I want to do. At the end of the day, I’ve come to a place of feeling horribly, terribly, painfully... trapped. Please don’t read this and think “She’s a terrible mom - she wishes she didn’t have her kids.” That’s not the case at all, my kids are my life. That being said, I’m tired of everything in my life being dictated by the restrictions placed on me because I have kids. I’ve come to understand that part of being a good mom is showing my kids what it takes to be a happy, healthy adult. There’s a fine line between doing something selfish and doing something that’s better for everyone, whether they know it at the time or not.
I don’t know what I’ll do. I don’t know what changes will be necessary to unstick my clock. What I do know, what I have to know... is it will happen. It might be a small change, it might be a big one. Whatever it is, you can rest assured I’ll be sharing it here... and if you miss the blog, just listen for the tick, tick, tick coming from my unstuck heart.