Waiting and Listening

It takes an embarrassing amount of effort to crack open the windows in our third-floor apartment. My dog chases the sun as it spills over the hard wood floors. As I stand by the window breathing in the sweet aroma of spring, I hear the silence of winter melting away. I observe the noise of keys dangling as people walk, birds hopping from branch to branch and music pouring from other open windows. I begin to prep my simple breakfast of eggs and toast, smiling as I listen to someone singing to Billie Holiday’s Easy Living.

spring is hereI prepare my cup of matcha green tea to help wake me for the day. The bright green color mirroring the regenerating grass below. Closing my eyes, I let the sunshine and the rich aroma of green tea envelop me and calm my rushing mind. My to-do list will be there whether or not I fuss over it.

new directionsMy husband and I are preparing for our second cross-country move in two years. Our stay in the east coast is slowly coming to an end, and we have a few weeks to tie up loose ends while preparing for our next adventure. I take a moment to think about how much life can change within a couple years. I look out and think how much I’ve seen this beautiful oak tree by our window stir and bend with every season. How much I’ve felt my heart grow and stretch; how strangers became the friends I’ll miss so much. When the rushing stops, I start to realize how much it hurts me to say goodbye to the home we’ve created in such a short time. I feel the pang in my chest, giving me just a taste of how much I’ll miss those who’ve opened their arms and so generously shared their lives with us.

Taking another sip, I sift through my emotions, careful not to silence or suppress them with the busyness. Careful to just wait and listen. It takes a lot of effort and reminding to stop thinking about all the stuff I need to do – just for a few minutes. Goodbyes will come. New jobs and programs and communities will be waiting for us, and for now, I just want to relish in this time. The calm before the boxes and U-Hauls and gas stations in North Dakota. I want to be careful not to rush through this next month. I want to savor each moment, and it’s a lot harder than it seems.


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