Moments that bring a lump to my throat are few and far between these days. The older I get, the more I need those moments. There is a cynical, weather-worn voice that raises its ugly head on days when I feel like life has crapped all over me again.
I want to give in to that hard-hearted voice and look at the world around me through cracked and broken lenses, to see the lack, the scarcity, the inhumanity of it all.
Then a ‘moment’ stops me in my tracks and a lump rises to my throat, my eyes fill with tears that long to spill over. We all have those moments, they leave us with a split-second choice. Soften our heart and let them spill over or grit our teeth, swallow it down and listen to the voice.
For me, those moments are usually quite unexpected and surprising. They are found in the spontaneous acts of my grandchildren. That moment when Miss Three wriggles herself under my arm for a ‘nuggle’ and mumbles ” I love you Nannie”, or the light in Master Five’s eyes when he sees me arrive. When Miss Five’s face crumples because it’s time to go home or the twirls of my other Miss Three when the music is simply irresistible.
Today the moment came watching a video clip of a horse the world had given up on. She was meeting Pat Parelli for the first time to see if Natural Horsemanship could help this uncontrollable, dangerous horse. Seeing the sheer terror in the whites of her eyes, the stiff legged way she moved spoke reams. She wasn’t just afraid, she thought she was going to die. Through the magic of video the transformation happened in minutes, although I have seen Pat calm a horse and ride it in half an hour at a live event. So what was the moment that brought me undone? Seeing her being confidently ridden? Watching her chase cows with no fear and quite a lot of curiosity? No, the lump in my throat happened when Pat gently stroked her face and she let him; someone finally understood her.
The lump came, the tears threatened along with the choice…
I swallowed past the lump, by choice, because I listened to the voice in my head. “Why are you getting choked up over a horse?”
This is the same voice that criticizes my writing. Telling me I shouldn’t bother, that no one would want to read what I write. The voice is familiar, it has spoken all through my life, bringing me undone when I least expected it. Shaming me, making me second guess myself, blocking my creativity and just being a bully in general. Until today I hadn’t realized it was so connected to my heart, that it was having an influence on how I express my feelings, even to myself. I was the only one there, no need to stop those tears, to feel the wonder, the awe of seeing the trust in that horse as she placed her life into his hands.
This blog is me, in part, taking a stand against the voice in my head, just the act of deciding to make my writing public is my rebellion against the voice. The voice tells me that blogging is passe these days,”it’s so last year” and yet I will write.
“She stood in the storm, and when the wind did not blow her away, she adjusted her sails.” – Elizabeth Edwards-