Yesterday, I slipped off my shoes and stepped onto a shore full of September sand. The sun was out. I’m wearing my favorite grey t-shirt and the scarf Kara gave me two autumns ago.
I take dozens of awkward steps towards the water. I have been thinking about the ocean all morning. I don’t know why. I know I woke up pressed on every side by the city. By the dry cleaning van that pulls up at 7:55a.m. across the street, by the street cleaners, by the sirens. I lost my job a week ago, that was the same week I found out why I’ve been not feeling so well lately and the same week my father wrote to say he’s living in Colorado now. I cried for two days straight.
Between scrolling craigslist for jobs, figuring out how to make coconut bread, and trying to decide how to text my father back, I’ve been fighting the heaviness and scribbling down questions. Questions like, how long, why, and where are you? Sometimes I murmur them like a crazy person until I fall asleep.
I woke up two mornings ago; the morning was still blue and my eyes found no grand answers, but promises: “I will satisfy the weary soul, and every languishing soul I will replenish.” I don’t know when the sadness will end. But I know there will be “grace in the wilderness.” I have been fighting for order for as long as I can remember and now I am completely out of control. “And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you…will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.”
I pocket these promises the same way I pocket purple shells and black stones. I have no answers. But yesterday, I sat on rocks and listened to the ocean lash against the rocks. I can’t tell what is happening in my life. I just want to stay here in this grace-filled space, with my eyes closed, my knees held to my chest. Up here, I am safe. Up here, the water can swirl and rage and lash but it cannot reach me.