So. I’m adjusting to my “New Normal?” How about my “New Abnormal?” I flew all over the place last month. Seemed like I’d never touch down again, I’d only light on a branch, and only that for a moment.
I had a few speaking engagements, and meetings in September, and I was lucky enough to do something I’ve always wanting to do – airport hop in my airplane! So often you can get in a rut flying the same routes, so this shook me up, sharpened me up, and honed my flying skills to a shiny gleam. Ah, and it felt so good! Added on top of the challenges were open blue skies, beautiful sunsets, and the joy of a trip into Washington DC at night. So peaceful.
I felt free as a bird.
I was like an aeronautical cowgirl. Arriving at another airport, feeling easy – like I was going to unhitch my horse to take off to my next destination, and she (my plane) and I were going to keep each other great company along the way. When we landed, I’d tie her up, and she’d wait until we we’re ready to go again.
Patrick always said that one of the things he liked about flying was – he could pick when and where he landed. I never quite understood this pleasure of being in command of his destination. Until now.
I wondered. Was I extricated myself from my “New Normal” life? Like a balloon cut loose? There have been so many things I’ve been exploring in how to find, and live in my new and strange life without my husband. This certainly was different. And wouldn’t you know it, here and there, the thought kept nagging that I should stop my trip, stop it and come back down to earth; that, for some reason, I wasn’t being practical to be so cut loose and fancy free. Not responsible. Fact is, I’ve rarely allowed myself that kind of freedom.
But maybe it was time I did!!
I wasn’t hurting anyone, not breaking the law, and I was having a great time! So, why couldn’t I do exactly what I was doing?
What makes me think that I have to conform to some kind of rigid life, like a member of the wonderful storyteller, Garrison Keeler’s, church in Lake Woebegone aptly named “Our Lady of Perpetual Responsibility?”
Am I going to spiral out of control if I wander off the beaten path?
I have another widow friend who, after her husband died, decided she was going to get on a ship, and cruise the world. And after she was done, maybe she ‘d do it again. An acquaintance of hers looked at her sympathetically, and said, “Honey, you’re going to have to get off that boat sometime.” My friend (who has quite a bit of money) thought a moment, then shrugged, “No I don’t.”
And while not all of us have the money to cruise the world, why can’t we, in our own ways, go…just a little crazy? I say let’s do it!!!
So, okay, here. If I’m building a new life for myself, why not include things I really enjoy? And what if…what if it is just a little wild?
As October came, my trip winded up as I flew back West. I pulled up and hitched my plane at my ranch (where I petted some real horses, and fed carrots to them). I had come to miss all my animals terribly. And they were a very good reason to come back down to earth.
And yes, while on the ground, I did responsible things: ordered feed, booked the farrier, did some of my never-ending book keeping work… And you know what? After my trip, I had fun while I was doing it. I felt so blessed.
One of the lessons Patrick and I learned when he was sick was how valuable it is to stop to smell the roses. It was easy learning that with him, and now, I’m realizing that I’d have to learn how that lesson works for myself, on my own.
And I just thought of a new concept for living. I say we stay free, alive – and we show up for those we love.